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Then What?

     A theme in my 2005 book, The Long Emergency, was the counter-intuitive idea that the federal government, rather than becoming the omnipotent Big Brother Moloch so many feared, would instead spiral into impotence and become too incompetent and ineffectual to run everybody’s life. Another theme was that the USA was entering a political impasse comparable to the years that preceded the civil war, with many of the same old grudges playing out in disguise. What we’re seeing is an empire that had grown too quickly to even acknowledge it had become an empire, enter, just as quickly, the throes of contraction.

     Hence, the great unacknowledged task before the leadership class is managing contraction. The radical Republicans, even in their Jeezus-driven transports of Dixieland retribution and John Bircher paranoia, come a little closer to recognizing the situation than the Democrats with their Leviathan problem — their nanny-state grandiosity. So, those red state radicals are gonna run that ole ‘possum up a gum stump now and see what happens.

     What will happen is whole lot of uncertainty that will further undermine a faith-based economic system lurching on the fumes of legitimacy, especially where money and banking are concerned. The trouble with this kind of brinksmanship is that it is bound to produce unanticipated consequences. When the Carolina secessionists bombarded Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor, they didn’t have in mind the carnage-to-come of Spotsylvania and Chancellorsville. Similarly, the genteel spectators who rode carriages out of Washington to observe the doings at Bull Run as if it were the NFL season opener. In short, neither the Union or the Confederacy had a clue that they were entering upon the world’s first extravaganza of industrial mass slaughter. So, one wonders if their descendents today realize that are toying with the financial suicide of an advanced technocratic society.

      The merits of the case for or against Obamacare are almost impossible for even well-informed and educated citizens to parse. You start with a law roughly 2,000 pages long, cobbled together largely by lobbyists for the insurance and medical industries, both of them hideous rackets, and move to a labyrinth of 50 different state’s systems for administering the darn thing, and then consider the supposed beneficiaries, namely young people so burdened by college loans in an economy that only offers minimum wage scut-jobs that, from one day to the next, they probably don’t know whether to shit or go blind. They don’t even have the scratch to pay the opt-out tax, let alone purchase an insurance policy.

     Beyond that kind of uncertainty is the certainty that a whole lot of things are primed to shake loose. One that deserves the anxiety it is generating is the question of US debt, which translates directly into the question of US currency, i.e., the fate of the dollar. Does the legislative branch want to play games with the only thing that supports the market for US Treasury paper — the dollar’s proxy — which is the generally-held notion that the full faith and credit of the nation stands behind promises to pay? 200 measly basis points in the ten-year note is all that stands between the pretense of economic stability and some pretty serious chaos in the government / banking matrix. The one-two punch of the continuing resolution for appropriations and the imminent debt ceiling crunch may rip the fabric of our constructed financial reality and open a black hole into which the wealth of nations disappears forever.

      Some observers think a government shutdown would be salutary, the beginning of a wholesale house-cleaning of federal agencies and pain-in-the-ass public employees who get paid too much, enjoy too many benefits, and work strenuously to impede honest enterprise. There may be something to that. But the current actions in congress are more likely to produce a kind of epileptic seizure of all economic activity, public and private.

      If congress is really hot to de-fund something, I suggest they start with defunding suburban sprawl, which enjoys more direct government subsidy than even the medical racket. I bet that would not go over so well in the big red Nascar states of Dixie, where driving in a car to do anything has been more-or-less mandatory for decades. This is the kind behavior that is truly killing American civilization, but it’s the last thing we will pay attention to.

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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.

238 Responses to “Then What?” Subscribe

  1. Arn Varnold September 30, 2013 at 9:41 am #

    But the current actions in congress are more likely to produce a kind of epileptic seizure of all economic activity, public and private.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Frankly, I don’t think this has anything to do with the economy. I think it’s a racial power play against a black president.
    I don’t like Obama; but my dislike is about policies, not color!
    The republican party is finished; they have shown their childish disdain for any ability at adulthood.
    They are children deprived of their toys; throwing temper tantrums; and deserve no attention for their immature behavior…

    • lsjogren September 30, 2013 at 10:04 am #

      Quite possible. The Republican Party has pretty much died out in the state of California, for example. Now the Democrats are the sole architect and supervisor of the demolition of that state’s economy.

    • fugeguy September 30, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

      I am sure it is because he is black and has nothing to do with five years of out-of-control spending, failed policies, endless foreign entanglements and records set for scandals and acts of treason …

      …lucky that he is 1/2 black because a Caucasoid president would have been fired long ago based on such performance.

      • rka September 30, 2013 at 1:56 pm #

        OH yah? We had 8 years of W. I don’t recall that he was black (or any other ethnicity other than connected caucasoid). As for performance; where exactly did our problems begin? Certainly not with a black, half black or brown colored ethnicity. It was OK for them. It seems to me your sensitivities are skewed (did I spell that right?)

    • Janos Skorenzy September 30, 2013 at 4:50 pm #

      You aren’t pro-Black but your political enemies are anti-Black? You wont give them the benefit of the doubt but you demand it – despite the cultic status Obama’s skin color gave him in the eyes of so many both White and Black.

      That being said, I think you are wrong. To bow down before the gods of diversity is a necessity to be in good standing in the Republican Party. Corporations love Affirmative Action because it crushes small and medium sized companies far more than it hurts them.

  2. Mister Roboto September 30, 2013 at 9:41 am #

    That’s really it in a nutshell, isn’t it? I weep for this country.

    • Malthus September 30, 2013 at 10:28 am #

      I don’t I really want to see and be part of the complete collapse of this house of cards designed to make the rich richer and everyone else slave to just live.

      • Mister Roboto September 30, 2013 at 11:52 am #

        Really? Well, you know what they say, be careful for what you wish, because you might just get it and get rather more than for which you originally bargained.

        • HARM September 30, 2013 at 1:18 pm #

          He said he *doesn’t* want to see it.

        • Malthus October 4, 2013 at 8:51 am #

          Yes, I did say I want to see it and be part of it. Never FEAR I really hope it is worse than even I can imagine. The only ones are afraid are the ones that are attached to this illusion and think they can only survive by being part of the herd. Which are you?

  3. Neon Vincent September 30, 2013 at 9:43 am #

    “[O]ne wonders if their descendents today realize that are toying with the financial suicide of an advanced technocratic society.”

    I don’t think the “suicide caucus,” as Charles Krauthammer called them, has a clue. On the other hand, some of their big money funders just might. Ryan Lizza of the New Yorker thinks that after the markets tank today and tomorrow, they’ll call the GOP leadership and tell them in no uncertain terms that what they’re doing is bad for business and to stop the nonsense. Even before this, the business wing of the GOP have gotten sick of the corn pone fascists of the Tea Party. Here in Michigan, two local businessmen have announced their candidacies to challenge sitting Tea Party Representatives. The country club Republicans have had enough of the crazy riff raff running things.

    “If congress is really hot to de-fund something, I suggest they start with defunding suburban sprawl, which enjoys more direct government subsidy than even the medical racket. I bet that would not go over so well in the big red Nascar states of Dixie, where driving in a car to do anything has been more-or-less mandatory for decades.”

    Good luck with that. Subsidizing home mortgages and highways is even more popular than maintaining our empire, and both the Democrats and Republicans are imperial parties. It’s just that the Republicans are more honest with themselves and others that they are. You’ll have to go to the outsider parties, such as the Greens and Libertarians, to get that program going and have it work from the bottom up. Speaking of which, there is a Green Tea coalition of young people who’ve put together the Ann Arbor Mixed-Use Party to contest City Council seats. They’ve decided to attack the zoning code first to increase density and reduce sprawl. I wish them luck, they’ll need it.

    crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/09/examinercom-article-on-mixed-use-party.html

  4. Newfie September 30, 2013 at 10:05 am #

    The IPCC released their latest report last week. In a nutshell it says if the human race doesn’t stop burning fossil fuels completely within 15 years, we are going to fry the planet to a crisp by the end of the century. All the other “problems” we are facing kind of fade into insignificance after the planet turns into a smoldering blackened crisp. Helloooo ???

    • Neon Vincent September 30, 2013 at 10:30 am #

      “[W]e are going to fry the planet to a crisp by the end of the century….after the planet turns into a smoldering blackened crisp.”

      As long as there is carbon to burn and the desire to burn it, humans will push up CO2, which is already at Pliocene levels, to Miocene, then Eocene, and even Jurassic levels. However, the planet wasn’t a blackened crisp at those times. It wasn’t even Venus. Save the talk about Earth as a blackened crisp for when the sun goes red giant in five billion years.

      That written, the truth is bad enough. NASA simulations show significant warming and drought over North America, with an average US temperature 8 degrees F warmer than today and up to 10% change in precipitation by the end of the century.

      crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/07/warming-and-drought-in-nasa-simulations.html

      • ednguyen September 30, 2013 at 11:36 am #

        In the Jurassic period the planet had large and healthy forests cycling water through the atmosphere. Those forests are now mostly cut down.

      • Newfie September 30, 2013 at 1:37 pm #

        The “blackened crisp” was just a metaphor. But a projected five degree rise in global average temperature is not going to be a minor “happening”. Check out “Under a Green Sky” by Peter Ward.

        worldchanging.com/archives/006386.html

        That kind of future is within the realm of possibility.

  5. George September 30, 2013 at 10:05 am #

    “Hence, the great unacknowledged task before the leadership class is managing contraction.”

    I’m not an avid student of history but I don’t think that any empire ever acknowledged that it had to manage contraction. Other than the three decade long British experiment with socialism in the latter half of the 20th Century, I doubt there are any precedents to follow. Though Rome eventually succumbed to barbarous hordes, the UK managed a brief period of prosperity.

    Things appear to be past the Point of No Return. Congress seems hard-pressed to function as outlined in Article I. Contraction is probably waiting in the wings ready to enter as the next act. As a society, we’ve organized ourselves to do only a few things well and now that we’ve seen the results it’s clear that few if any of these things were sustainable.

    We’ve learned that it’s difficult for large organizations to change the way they operate, even when it’s clear to most in those organizations that things are amiss. How then can a whole society as complex and diverse as the US be expected to change the way it operates if the leadership cannot acknowledge basic facts defining the prevailing conditions?

    http://www.thesisa.org

    • Neon Vincent September 30, 2013 at 10:47 am #

      “I don’t think that any empire ever acknowledged that it had to manage contraction. Other than the three decade long British experiment with socialism in the latter half of the 20th Century, I doubt there are any precedents to follow.”

      The British also peacefully gave up their colonial empire at that time. To a lesser extent, so did the French (Algeria and Indochina did not leave peacefully). The Dutch, Spanish, and Portuguese also realized that they would have to give up most of their colonial holdings. All of them faced reality that they could no longer run half the world as their possessions. Of course, it helped that they had someone to hand over effective hegemony of the planet to, us. The U.S. doesn’t have the same luxury right now. Who are we going to give over control to, the Chinese? We might be willing to share power with them, but not give it up to them. Of course, the Chinese might just buy control, one piece at at time.

      crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/07/codominion-news-from-reuters-and-al.html

      • WW September 30, 2013 at 2:14 pm #

        Britain gave up its empire because the empire bled it dry. The commitment of bring most of the countries into the 20th century cost far more than the empire produced. Unlike despotic empires the treasury recieved little other than local taxes whilst spending far more. By the end of WW2 the difference was so apparent that giving independence was as a relief and something to be achieved as quick as possible, often complicated by the cold war and communist insurgencies that politically were necessary to defeat whilst finacially it would have been more desirable to just jump ship asap!

  6. AKlein September 30, 2013 at 10:06 am #

    JHK has has predicted this denouement for years. What we are witnessing now is the throes of a society constructed on multiple layers of facades – nothing is real or, at least, not what it appears to be. Just consider “The Law” and “Finances”. Not a single topic in our society is deemed worthy of earnest public examination and discussion. So, what does this generate? Belief in nothing. Utter lack of belief and faith in anything. What’s left? Go buy a lottery ticket. Money for nuthin’ and chicks for free. And then die. Then you won’t have to worry yourself about shit. Good deal, eh? Welcome to Hotel Californis.

  7. Greg Knepp September 30, 2013 at 10:08 am #

    True, making health insurance available to everyone won’t necessarily make it affordable. It has been reported that even a bare-bones policy for a healthy young adult will cost at least $350 a month. That’s a big piece of change for a person just starting out in life.

    I’m an oldster and have Medicare. Three months ago I went to the local urgent care center sporting a 3/4 inch cut on the back of my hand. Seven stitches did the trick – a twenty minute procedure at most. A month later I received a bill for $186.00. I called the facility and complained that I had given them my Medicare card (with both A and B coverage) and that this should have covered all but about 20% of the bill.

    Their answer…”it did.”

    • AKlein September 30, 2013 at 10:14 am #

      Greg, stop complaining. We have almost 1000 military bases around the world to support, all there to “protect” our way of life. You complaint suggests that perhaps our “way of life” isn’t so great. Aren’t you a team player? Welcome to the world as constructed by the likes of Dick Cheney. From Cheney: “The American way of life is non-negotiable.” Little did we know that the comment was directed at “us”, not “them”.

    • sprezzatura September 30, 2013 at 10:37 am #

      “$350 a month”? – That’s about what Canadians pay, except that it’s collected in the form of sales taxes that we don’t notice.

      What’s the difference between U.S. and Canadian health care? In the U.S., if you get really sick you can go bankrupt for medical costs.

      In Canada, they charge us so much in taxes to support health care, that we go bankrupt anyway :o)

      To paraphrase the old saw: What’s the difference between Capitalism and Socialism? Capitalism is Man’s Exploitation of Man. Socialism is the reverse.

      • HARM September 30, 2013 at 12:56 pm #

        Oh boo-hoo. In Canada, you spend about half per capita than we do in the US, get 100% coverage for it, don’t have to support wars of empire, and live longer and in better overall health than Americans. The scourge of “socialized medicine” indeed.

  8. retired guy September 30, 2013 at 10:15 am #

    Jim, Good Blog. Your idea that the Government will become incompetent, ineffectual, and weak, is right on target. When you really give the idea some thought, it’s not counter intuitive at all. The power and the ability to mess around with our lives that it now has, requires vast resources and huge numbers of government workers. When the resources aren’t available any more, the Government will collapse. Peak oil and peak other materials, should be something that all those government bureaucrats and politicians fear more than anything else. It means the end of their power. All of the grandiose future plans such as Obamacare, along with all the huge systems already in place such as, the interstate highway system, Medicare, the present healthcare industry dominated by large hospitals and high tech medical tools, Big Box Store chains, etc, they will all disintegrate. We are on our inevitable way back to “local”. What’s always puzzled me about this world wide decline in, population, standard of living, etc, is that so many supposedly smart world “leaders” seem totally unaware of it. Do you have any ideas on why that is, Jim?

    • ozone September 30, 2013 at 11:32 am #

      Excellent supporting observations. Thanks.
      …And I have the same ending question with a small addendum: Are they unaware, or are they deliberately hiding these critical issues from the public so as to maintain control? (I’m of a mind that this is a race between total control of the populace vs. political collapse, as I’ve stated before.)

  9. Smoky Joe September 30, 2013 at 10:33 am #

    No disagreement. The system is broken. I favor basic and preventative health care for all US citizens, the least a civilized and moral nation can do. But it’s too late.

    Back when we still had a working government, socialized basic care might have actually contained health-care costs. Now, however, I fear we are in for what I call a “Kunstlerian sprial” down. The evidence is all around us. At the State Fair of Virginia yesterday, a sizable percentage of the visitors rode around in motorized wheel chairs. They were not old, but fat and slowly dying from their own bad choices. Beside them waddled the walking cardiac-arrests-to-come.

    That’s our future, if the system limps along. And it will break any efforts at reform.

    One good thing: if a new Civil War erupted, many down South would be too fat to fight. That’s a comfort.

    • Bukko Canukko September 30, 2013 at 10:49 am #

      They wouldn’t need many common citizen Southerners to fight, Smoky. The lean and angry hard-bodies already in uniform could cow a huge herd of bovines with no trouble. Especially when those sheople are already disposed to bow down to authority “because they’re keeping us safe.” In my past dealings with border guards, airport SSecurity and everyday police officers, I could size up most of them and think “Yeah, if you got the order to machine-gun a crowd of protestors, you’d do it. And you’d tell yourself you were just protecting the Amerikan way of life.”

      P.S. A nation of fat waddlers is easier to overwhelm than a lot of lithe people who can run and fight. The question is — why would TPTB WANT to protect such a lot of slob-slugs? But that will be the next phase of the Amerikan experiment — eliminating the useless overeaters…

      • Smoky Joe September 30, 2013 at 1:39 pm #

        Bukko, you hit a very fat nail right on the head. Of course, our military elite does pledge an oath to protect the Constitution. Thin reed to cling to, but I trust them more than our undereducated waddlers, at least as long as the enlisted men obey their officers.

        As for the police and para-militaries you note? I would love to see some would-be Rambo law-enforcement dude pull a takeover and have real military come down on his head. Same for the civilian fatsos in BDUs who play army with their anti-guvmint buddies.

  10. BackRowHeckler September 30, 2013 at 10:35 am #

    But Jim, the Suburban Sprawl keeps growing, leastways ’round here. Not a week goes by when yet another Soviet Style billion $$$ project is announced, mostly funded by the State, all of them involving the pouring of oceans of concrete and the laying of acres of black pavement. For example, in my town there exists a plot of land of about 80 acres which since ancient times has been owned by the City of Hartford. Recently it was revealed, with great fanfare, this property would be developed into a suburban office park, which is puzzling because this entire valley is full up with office buildings, built in the 70s and 80s incongruously in the middle of cornfields and orchards, which now sit empty and abandoned. What type of businesses there will be in this office park no one seems to know. But I don’t think it matters anyway. I’m convinced, unlike you, the Government, with their modern police forces and ability to create money from nothing, can keep things going forever. I point to the Postal Service, which is losing 16 Billion $$$ per year but continues to operate without changing anything

    This weekend there were record crowds at Eastern States Exposition and the Durham Fair. This morning I heard on the news that GM cannot build big 8 cylinder Chevy Silverado Pickups fast enough to meet demand. If you ask anybody around here they’s say ‘we are in recovery’, as banal as that sounds.

    –BRH

    • aka_ces September 30, 2013 at 11:17 am #

      According to the below, some things are changing at the US PS —

      “Senator Diane Feinstein’s Husband Selling Post Offices to Cronies on the Cheap”

      nakedcapitalism.com/2013/09/senator-diane-feinsteins-husband-selling-post-offices-to-cronies-on-the-…

      [ a dup of my above comment got into the wrong location of the comment flow — perhaps the Editor can remove it ? ]

    • This is the way it goes in whats left of the domestic economy.

      Places of lesser desirability (those places hemmoraging jobs) are losing people that migrate to places of higher desirability (which create money by taking out loans to finance aforementioned asphalt and concrete).

      Internal migration in the US provides enough grist ot fractional reserve banking to keep development going. Its really not mysterious. People are going to move to where there are jobs and growth or quality of life. As long as this happens, banks can issue loans that magically create more money.

      Of course what happens in this cycle is that the leading edge of the movement (where ever it is) first increases the desirability of a place, and then decreases it. The places left behind will suffer a precipitous decline in quality of life.

      Instead of the agrarian pattern of even development across the territory as stakeholders stayed in place and improved life wherever they were, we now cultivate a population of internal economic refugees and the territory becomes stratified between urban concentrations and rural vacancies.

      These rural vacancies will be colonized by large corporate agribusiness, energy, or investment hedge funds in the vacuum.

    • caseyf5 September 30, 2013 at 11:28 am #

      Hello BackRowHeckler,

      The reason that the Post Office has a problem is with the Kongress Stooges mandating that they prepay 75 years of pensions in 10 years. Even Microsoft and Apple couldn’t do this and still operate! By the way the money put into the pensions will be looted by the Hedge Fucking Funders that are looting every pension system that they can!

    • HARM September 30, 2013 at 1:05 pm #

      The Postal Service would actually be running a surplus if it weren’t for the ‘baggers in Congress effectively forcing it into default.

      “…the United States Postal Service (USPS) lost $15.9 billion last year… almost 70 percent of this shortfall is due to a payment of $11.9 billion to the postal workers’ retiree health fund. This is noteworthy because Congress has required that the Postal Service prefund its retirement fund at a level that has no match in the private sector.

      …To put it another way: the Post Office is broken, in large part thanks to unhelpful meddling by Congress. And it won’t get fixed unless and until Congress gets out of the way and stops forcing it into the corporate equivalent of ketosis, essentially consuming its own flesh in order to survive.”

      Self fulfilling prophecy.

  11. Bukko Canukko September 30, 2013 at 10:38 am #

    If the government-haters on the Right want to defund something, there’s a simpler target than JHK’s amorphous notion to stop subsidizing suburban sprawl. (Whatever specifics that would entail?) How about strangling the flow of money to the SSecurity SState? How many billions of dollars are spent on the salaries of vicious leeches whose sole purpose is to spy on their fellow citizens?

    People complain about clerks at the Department of Motor Vehicles as an example of officious government bureaucracy. Suppose those DMV clerks had handguns and Tasers and could shoot you with impunity if they didn’t like the way you were eyeballing them?

    I cross the U.S. border from time to time from where I fled to Canada. I refuse to fly within the fascist “TAKE OFF YOUR SHOES!” American airline system, so I jet to Toronto or Montreal and drive to the Washington, D.C. area when I want to visit relatives. I get pulled aside to be hassled almost every time. I find the pointlessly hostile demeanour of the border guard goons to be far more offensive than some bored functionary at a Post Office. No mail carrier ever pulled my rental car apart when I tried to re-enter the country where I’m a citizen. Canada, where I’m a migrant worker on a temporary visa, is far more welcoming to me as a foreigner when I drive back onto their turf.

    The atmosphere of police state permeates every facet of life in the U.S. now. On the highways, I’m amazed at how many cop cars I see compared to where I’ve lived in Canada and Australia since escaping the U.S. in 2005. Walking around D.C. this past week, it’s revolting to note the scores of District and other police on all the streets, wanding me because I want to walk into a museum. Then there’s the barriers buried in the streets around major buildings, ready to spring up to stop what — tank attacks? Suicide car bombs? Yeah, you’ll get plenty of advance notice of those so you can raise the steel gate…

    Nowhere in the spurious controversy over the government shutdown have I heard any suggestion of disbanding the security theatre known as the TSA. Who’s talking about not paying the salaries of the NSA eavesdroppers? “Oh, the military will still get paid if there’s a shutdown” the media assure us, because they don’t to face the prospect of an immediate coup if the troops miss a meal. How’s about we START by laying off half of America’s uniformed murderers, then look at who to starve with more Food Stamp cuts?

  12. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 10:42 am #

    How come there’s no God of Reality?

  13. James Kuehl September 30, 2013 at 10:51 am #

    Kunstler grabs the spike in one hand, the sledge in the other, and drives it home. The Long Emergency has proven to be a reality reference point that gives readers some basis for what otherwise is bewildering behavior.

    When the official word went out that the USSR had tanked, lots of Russians said, “No shit. Where have you been for the decades we’ve spent making a living in spite of the boneheads in Moscow?”

    Peasants in the Ural Mountains probably said, “The WHAT collapsed? Excuse me, but I have a leaky roof and a missing goat.”

    As for Dixie, they’ll be fine. Pulled pork recipes work with all kinds of critters, regardless of political affiliation.

    • Smoky Joe September 30, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

      Sad thing in Dixie: very few can make a decent pulled-pork (or whistle-pig) BBQ now.

      For so many would-be “Southern Men,” if the food ain’t in a bag and passed through the F-350’s window, it’s starvation time. I see this sort of incompetence all the time now. Sad legacy for a bunch whose “butternut scarecrow” (nod to Shelby Foote) ancestors nearly whipped the Union despite their lack of weapons, factories, food, even shoes.

  14. aka_ces September 30, 2013 at 11:14 am #

    According to the below, some things are changing at the US PS —

    “Senator Diane Feinstein’s Husband Selling Post Offices to Cronies on the Cheap”

    nakedcapitalism.com/2013/09/senator-diane-feinsteins-husband-selling-post-offices-to-cronies-on-the-…

  15. ozone September 30, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    ” Some observers think a government shutdown would be salutary, the beginning of a wholesale house-cleaning of federal agencies and pain-in-the-ass public employees who get paid too much, enjoy too many benefits, and work strenuously to impede honest enterprise. There may be something to that. But the current actions in congress are more likely to produce a kind of epileptic seizure of all economic activity, public and private.” -JHK

    Well, yes, I agree that will be the FINAL upshot, but what we’ll see at this time of congressional blackmail and posturing is another round of can-kicking. I think George (above) has got it about right and they’ll drive “this sucker” (tm GWB) into an old-time craftsman’s sturdy brick wall at 100 mph. Pre-scripted in this scenario, the congressional driver will be arguing with the congressional shotgun-seat rider about how best to goose/stimulate “growth” and “good jobs” with such intensity that the brick wall will not even be noticed until the actual point of impact. That’s the only thing that will stop these idiots from talking bullshit — when their jobs no longer exist/have any meaning. (The job description now is: “Bullshitter, extend-and-pretender, lobbyist for corporate hire, personal fund-raiser, ideological rabble-rouser. Previous experience a plus.”) No understanding or contemplation of contraction is to be entertained. A blind[ed] faith in the current ‘system’ and its’ perpetuation is absolutely mandatory.

    Right at this very moment, they’re discussing the ‘health care’ act (with much attendant confusion) on the radio, and the terms ‘consumer’ and ‘tax credits’ and ‘poverty line/level’ keep being bandied about. That should give an idea of the clusterfuck that this is set to become and an indication that it’s likely one of the final bilkings and milkings of the former middle class by the abusive insurance and medical industries, while there’s still a little juice in the turnip to be extracted before seriously desperate hand-to-mouth becomes the overwhelming norm.

    Two things ‘back’ the dollar: Oil sales (denominated in it) and the implicit threat of a huge and deadly military in the case of ‘non-compliance’. Don’t know how far into the future that vicious swindle can be stretched.

    Finally, as Al K. says above, damn near everything is now based on various mirages, swindles and lies. Even the facade of suburbia as a stand-in for “country livin'” is a divisive destroyer of trust. It’s now ACCEPTED that everyone is out for #1 and will lie, cheat and steal to ensure that. As such, you aren’t going to have much of a cohesive society that is worth the name. Re-establishing real trust between local folks is going to be the hardest part of the whole kerfuffle; we’ve lost that skill by succumbing to the lure of separateness/privacy that we’ve been told was highly desirable, but which, in fact, was just another extractive scam in the end.

    • LLPete September 30, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

      Ozone, I think you really hit the nail on the head with this one, “Re-establishing real trust between local folks is going to be the hardest part of the whole kerfuffle; we’ve lost that skill by succumbing to the lure of separateness/privacy that we’ve been told was highly desirable, but which, in fact, was just another extractive scam in the end.”
      Why do the real powers out there glorify the cult of the rugged individual? Because individuals are easily controlled and contained. Now groups, groups of all kinds scare them.

      • ozone October 1, 2013 at 9:30 am #

        Will they be even more scared as more people abandon their power structure and tax collections?

        Your clear-eyed comment points to something we’d be well-advised to consider: What would be the behavior of a panicked/frightened, and militarily powerful government? Let’s hope it crumbles from its’ own weight and we don’t have to find that out.

        And, what historical precedence do we have that might be germane to the US empire? As of now, we have no one ‘storming the gates’ or ‘fighting in the streets’, so who will appear as “the enemy” to those in power that they’ll need to maintain fear and their hierarchy? We probably should consider that this country is awfully spread out for effective central control, and I think this is why the fast-tracking of total informational awareness is going forward without legal constraints. “See? Don’t worry it’s all perfectly legal, like that nation-of-laws thing you’ve heard about.” You’re right, they’re very scared of their own citizens, otherwise they wouldn’t feel the need to identify internal threats, anywhere and everywhere (whether they exist or not). They’re seeing ghosts… now how they react will tell the tale of their fate, and [as they’ve made sure by over-complexity and centralization], ours.

  16. mdhendler September 30, 2013 at 11:24 am #

    If the US enters an extended period of default with all the resulting economic and political turmoil, then that might be the time for a military emergency committee to step in and do what needs to be done to restore not just order but basic sovereign existence. K has often mentioned such as scenario. Now might be the time.

  17. beantownbill. September 30, 2013 at 11:27 am #

    A rational approach for me, at my age, is to sit back in my armchair with a nice glass of red wine and watch with amusement the Keystone Kops movie unwind before my eyes. There was a time I would have acted with indignity, but I had already known we had had it by the time I saw Jerry Rubin without a beard, with coiffed hair and wearing a suit and tie, sometimes in the ’70’s or ’80’s. it’s no longer like the late ’60’s/early ’70’s in Harvard Square, eh, Jim?

    On that note, I’d like to repeat a recent quote made by a commenter who had in turn quoted some Eastern philosopher, either on this blog or another one, that resonated with me:

    Depression is from living in the past.
    Anxiety is from living in the future.
    Peace is from living in the present.

    • ozone September 30, 2013 at 12:08 pm #

      Good one, Bill.
      However, if one’s present is living in the middle of a war-zone, one ain’t gonna have much peace! (Damnit, there’s always a glitch! ;))

      But you’re correct, we don’t have much influence over anything outside of a tiny circle of mileage, so we’d better work on that (presently) and keep a skeptical observer’s/learner’s eye on what the empire is up to and why it’s up to it.

  18. jdcandon September 30, 2013 at 11:38 am #

    On the issue of Obamacare, the Supreme Court would not have

    found it constitutional unless the POTUS had blackmailed them via

    his IRS or his NSA. As for the Federal government, it is fiscally

    broken, shut the whole thing down! The conservatives excepted,I

    pray for the POTUS and the liberals in Congress to get their heads

    out of their asses and see reality. This entitlment mindset has to end.

    The only ones buying our debt are our own elites, the Federal

    Reserve. Elites keep guns, taxpayers give them up! Crazy!!

    Dynan Candon

  19. swmnguy September 30, 2013 at 11:42 am #

    What I’m seeing is a devolutionary process that takes longer than any of us expect. We’re culturally conditioned to expect things to act quickly, and that’s what we demand, “Fast! Fast Relief!”

    I don’t think that’s going to happen. As far back as Sinclair Lewis’ prescient “It Can’t Happen Here” in 1936 or so, we’ve seen what’s going to happen. Fascism will come draped in the flag, carrying a cross. It will promote the very worst among us to the minor thug-level, whom we disregard at our peril. See the woman Pilar’s story in Hemingway’s “For Whom The Bell Tolls.” And then go to the airport. Here in Minneapolis, I see a TSA agent who shares a birth name with Ozzy from Black Sabbath. I used to hang out in the same bar he did. He affects not to know me. Clearly his IT career has ended and now he works for the employer of last resort. Good thing he’s never met my wife, who is a hot little thing. One wonders, having read Lewis and Hemingway, what might come of unmet desires in a time of social unraveling and authoritarian upheaval.

    It’s quite possible the Country Club Republicans might be tiring of the authoritarian/populist antics of the Tea Party types. But that reveals the subservient status, understood or not, of the Country Club Republicans. Why did the Elites buy out the Tea Party types in the first place? They understood full well how “bad for business” they were, just as the Henry Fords and the Mellons and Krupps and everyone else understood Hitler perfectly well.

    Here’s the deal. These bulls in the china shop serve a very useful purpose for the true elites. They wreck stuff and they’re “bad for business,” at least at the retail level. But they perform a far more valuable service. They promote the notion that representative democracy has failed and does not work. That is their function. To discredit the idea that the hoi-polloi can govern themselves. To reinforce the idea that we need a firm whip-hand to make the trains run on time, and if that hand allows the elites to loot us, that’s not just what we deserve, it’s what we really need, require, and demand.

    That’s why we’re going to shut down government over a piece of finance-industry-written drivel that addresses no problems that truly exist. ACA confuses health insurance market saturation with actual health care, and does nothing about the true issue, which is cost. Costs are driven by a fee-for-service model which encourages costly interventions to maintain sickness, rather than unprofitable methods that afford actual health. Medicine is now a fully-owned subsidiary of the Finance Industry, which is a complete failure in progress. When your economy is based on unlimited money, energy, resources and markets, and you live on a finite world, only money can be made infinite and that only by making it abstract; so you get…this.

    The point of the government shutdown will be to show those of us still paying attention that representative democracy has failed, and the only alternative is to give all power to the lowest-common-denominator dictator who will not make the trains run on time and the mail service work, but who will punish us all and let us die of insulin deficiency if we do not fall into line; who will turn over ownership of everything of value to the trans-national elites, and we will either like it or be charged with kiddie-porn after a spectacular arrest and news conference.

    Maybe a collapse in the finance or energy systems will help, and maybe they will only hasten the process.

    • Loneranger September 30, 2013 at 12:28 pm #

      Our Local community is the poster child for financial fantasy. Currently, two credit union building are being constructed a mile apart, at each end of our ginormous mall, with many empty stores. Between them are three (count ’em) three banks. This week one restaurant building is being demolished, and three others are long-term empty. A prestigious jewelry store was build four years ago, and was abandoned in less than a year–still empty. A metro buss passes our condo several times every day, almost totally empty.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 30, 2013 at 5:04 pm #

      People who warn of a Christian Fascist coup in the middle of a slow motion Communist takeover amaze me. That’s conditioning. But you’re not totally wrong since ultimately the Left is funded by the Banker Illuminati. So you’re not wrong about the “Right” by you simply fail to see that there is no real Left at all.

      • swmnguy October 8, 2013 at 11:57 am #

        Sorry I didn’t see your response until now. I really don’t see a Communist takeover in progress, slow or otherwise. I hear lots of accusations of Communism and Socialism, but when you look more closely you see government power coercing individuals to give money to well-connected private interests. That’s the crux of ACA (“ObamaCare,” or “RomneyCare,” or “The Heritage Foundation’s Plan to Save The Insurance Companies;” call it what you will. That’s the result of SNAP programs the require the use of Citi-supplied debit cards that charge outright usurious fees, and all the impetus toward privatized education funded with tax money.

        I’ll accept your comment that I show my conditioning. I try always to be aware of that and to take it seriously when others point it out.

        One think I will disagree with you about, and I think it points to your conditioning; I am very aware indeed “that there is no real Left at all.” I found that to be a curious comment from you, mentioning earlier as you did that we are “in the middle of a slow motion Communist takeover…”

        Are you arguing that the “Communists” aren’t “Left” either, as they’re all “funded by the Banker Illuminati”? It gets hard to communicate clearly as all the terms are intentionally rendered meaningless by PR types. If that is what you are trying to suggest then I agree with you. I see nearly no legitimate Left; absolutely none of it organized, on the American scene and precious little worldwide. So to call things “Left” and “Right” becomes meaningless. The divides have more to do with technique and timelines rather than ideology.

  20. hawk711 September 30, 2013 at 12:13 pm #

    parts 1 & 2 of The Obamacare Wars are now available at

    http://jimheald.blogspot.com

    Get the inside scoop before it happens…

    The Obamacare Wars

    The year is 2213 and we are reporting from a remote island which used to be a mountaintop in the former fiefdom of Maryland. Researchers and archeologists have uncovered a cache of tapes and paper records from the administration of the First King Obama, who started the Obamanian Dynasty which has long been credited with saving the Republic of Barackistan from the horde of invaders from the backward Southern and Western provinces. However, this particular period is shrouded in mystery given the Oil and Gas Wars of the 2020s, the Climate Wars of the 2020s and 30s, and then the great flood of the 2050s which obliterated most of the low lying lands of the eastern seaboard. The reigns of Queen Hillary and Queen Elizabeth of Warren are much better documented, but leave plenty of questions unanswered. We’re going to play you some disks that we found which may shed some light on how this all got started. It’s taken them quite some time to piece together the technology, but we’ve finally figured out how to broadcast these fascinating historical documents. Unfortunately, this technology is very energy intensive to use so we can only broadcast it in short segments, but the images are startlingly clear and the sound quality is very good considering their age.

    more at http://jimheald.blogspot.com

  21. Deblonay September 30, 2013 at 12:13 pm #

    Australian health care
    _____________
    In Australia we have an excellent national health scheme,which was brought into being in 1973…against conservative opposition.. by a Labor Govt
    I Since that time it has become universally accepted and no politician would dare change it or defund it…he would be wiped out by the voters

    People in the workforce pay a complusory 1.25%^ of their taxable income to a Health Commission which runs the whole system and this is done when paying ones income tax each year

    Retired people like my wife a I and the unemployed or disabled pay nothing and are are covered.
    To give you examples…
    Our visits to our local Doctor(who we are free to choose) are free as are all tests and other medical services that follow

    My wife recently had eye tests and will soon have minor surgery…I recently had wax removed from my ears by a nurse at the clinic …all covered

    My two small grand-daughters had vaccinations at their school..all covered as part of a national scheme for all kids in schools all over Australia

    I have had 4 episodes of major brain surgery in the past after a serious enurism(bleeding in the brain)”and nothing to pay for either the surgery or for 2 weeks in high care rehab. hospital while recovering

    Medicines and medical drugs or apllicancs are covered
    We only pay $5 for any prescription and if we spend more than $300 a year all after that is free because of age …over 65
    I recently got a hearing aid under the scheme..it was free
    The Levy all in the workforce MUST pay is topped up by the Federal Govt from taxes

    The scheme is brilliant Australia has the 2nd best longevity rates in the world …only the Japs live longer…all our l kids are covered for vacinnations and we have ,amongst the world’s highest rates for longgevity
    why can’t the USA do something like that…many European rich countries like France and Germany and tghe UK and Scandanavia have similar schemes to Australian’s
    It’s not hard Australia is second ony to the USA nowadays for Per Capita income…but all accept the right of EVERYONE to free health care
    under the scheme
    All doctoprs MUST partipate and hospitals and pharmacists too are involved in the scheme
    We have a kind of Credit Card which can be used anywhere in Australia for any kind of medical service…and it’s being linked to a National Health Commisiion Computer which will have everyone’s health and trteatment details…givimg instant recall anywhere in the country
    Iwent to a doctor a while back …in another state while on holidays..and at a click of his computer he brought up my whole medical history just using the card

    Brilliant and one of our greatest national acheivements
    why do American still exist in the dark ages ?..and make the poor and your kids…suffer without proper care

    • Petro September 30, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

      “Japs”? Really, you wrote “Japs”? Ha ha— I haven’t heard that term used since the last time I watched a war movie from 1950. You make some intelligent remarks, but need to update your vocabulary so you don’t embarrass yourself. Perhaps you are from a long ago era. I sure hope you don’t use such other terms like “Chink” or “Kraut” or “Coon.”

    • Janos Skorenzy September 30, 2013 at 5:12 pm #

      Your system sound great but it Cannot survive the open border immigration policy that you now have.

      • Janos Skorenzy September 30, 2013 at 5:20 pm #

        Open borders for Non-Whites that is. Whites have to have needed skills to get into Australia. But you can’t have too many Non Whites to destroy the White gene pool.

    • wolfbay September 30, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

      Your country is fortunate to be rich in natural resources and relatively close to China. Port Headland is a sight to behold and the taxes on this wealth help to subsidize your health care. If China’s economy continues to slow down you might find yourselves in our situation. We may be reaching the limit of how much debt we can pile on and how much money we can print out of thin air.

  22. K-Dog September 30, 2013 at 12:30 pm #

    What will happen is whole lot of uncertainty that will further undermine a faith-based economic system lurching on the fumes of legitimacy, especially where money and banking are concerned.

    “Confidence is the indispensable basis of all sorts of business transactions. Without it, commerce between man an man as between country and country, would like a watch run down and stop.” – Herman Melville

    And between dog and dog I’ll add. Collapse of the constructed financial reality will mean not all dogs eat. A sorry state of affairs which could be prevented if corporations paid taxes instead of playing the off-shore shell game.

    If congress is really hot to de-fund something they can start with corporate tax dodges. That is what is de-funding the country, greed, ignorance, legalized corruption, and billions of dollars in unpaid taxes.

  23. Karah September 30, 2013 at 1:22 pm #

    I really don’t know what the Civil War has to do with what’s going on today. I don’t see much difference between Greenwich and my southern town on the surface. Housing prices are the same. The people are the same. We all drive too much. We all have basic needs in life; food, fuel and pharmaceuticals. Obamacare is meeting ONE of those needs.

    It’s hard to write about something before it happens. News doesn’t always fall on a Monday. Kunstler is all over the place trying to answer a question that’s unanswerable right now.

    All I know is, that some people who were making money off of other people’s despair will have to find a new way of making that money. Soon they will find a way and it will be more regional. Wealthy families and corporations will more than ever have to step up their game by organizing tax deferred foundations. We already have a different color ribbon/day for every major chronic disease in this country with a supposed “cure” around the corner. Will they keep the faith? What is modern healthcare really promising people? I think it’s probably one of the most overfunded, wasteful institutions holding hands with NASA. Sure, there’s a lot of good research that has brought us a lot of good things from both sciences. However, how many times did they have to SCREW UP to get there? Kunstler’s hip and neck operations are a case in point. There’s a piece of the old Challenger still left to rot someplace near the ashes of an astronaut strewn over some 500 square miles. How much did that cost Americans and is still costing them to replace and retrain?
    States are really going to have to look at their balance sheets more closely over the next 27 years because they are going to give birth to babies they will be supporting for that long. They will have to provide food, fuel and pharmaceuticals for all of them. Sprawl and everything about it will just be a small footnote in their history that will go down as easy as a rotted tree. Detroit answered that question.

    There’s a crucial stage between 15 and 26 where people have to decide where they are going to live for the next 15 to 30 years because that is how long it takes to pay off a house, develop a business or pursue a career. Since most American families are spread out everywhere due to their individual pursuit of happiness, it’s hard to know where the chips will fall. Young people are feeling ever more confident about leaving the nest because of I-phones, internet networks, subsidized living arrangements and reliable transportation routes. I don’t think they give a flip about North and South or even acknowledge the transition from one side to the other. Will this trend continue? Or will all bets be taken off the table?

  24. RB September 30, 2013 at 1:52 pm #

    To the poster above who falls under the Australian health “scheme”.

    I think it is problematic to compare a country of some 20-25 million with one of some 315 million and one as diverse as ours in economic class, race and lifestyles. I tend to doubt that Australia has the number of lawyers the US does along with lawsuits for every imagined ill. Our medical/health world is simply different from that of Australia.

    You also use the word “free” in describing your care. There is nothing free anywhere. You might not be paying but someone else is just like you paid into that system when you were working and younger than 65. We have the VA medical system that covers selected and qualified Veterans. For many of them, it is “free” which is patent nonsense since American taxpayers foot that bill. Someone, somehow always pays for stuff. A favorite way here in the US is to rob Peter to pay for Paul’s lifestyle which of course is a system Paul loves. We can imagine Peter’s feelings on that process.

    Australia is now hosting US Marines as part of the US “pivot” to the Pacific. I advocate that the US abandon such activities including South Korea, Philippines, Japan, Australia and any other Pacific country in the area of defense spending. Australia can fund its own defense. Another reason why Australia has “free” medical for its citizens. See what I mean?

    • butter56 September 30, 2013 at 6:04 pm #

      That is a great explanation why a one size fits all system will not work in as complex and large society as we have. Norway or Australia are not comparable to the U.S. There are probably more Norwegians in Wisconsin and Minnesota than in Norway. Some inequity is unavoidable in large diverse populations

  25. And So It Goes September 30, 2013 at 2:00 pm #

    Crazy Eddie,

    I like your posts to this thread.

    You seem to talk from experience, not theory.

    Thanks for the thoughtful remarks.

  26. mika. September 30, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

    “Another theme was that the USA was entering a political impasse comparable to the years that preceded the civil war, with many of the same old grudges playing out in disguise.” — JHK
    ==

    That is exactly it!

    Whether you realize it or not, the American Civil War was about Rome’s imperialism. The forces aligned with Rome won that war, and it was thus described until the Vatican/CIA propaganda outlets flushed that knowledge down the collective memory hole.

    The richest US counties are those associated with the US gov mafia. These richest US counties are where the gov mafia is headquartered, where the US gov mafia bureaucracy works and resides. And they are ALL majority Roman Catholic counties! Look up the demographic makeup of the richest US counties. Look up who are the main employers in those counties. They ALL belong to the US gov mafia.

    Max Keiser: Fat Cats Spy On You (E251)
    Where does the privileged US gov mafia live:
    goo.gl/KyMnRL

    mika.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 30, 2013 at 5:16 pm #

      The Pope at the time (forget his name) corresponded with Jefferson Davis. He knew that Yankee Imperialism was a far greater threat to the world than the Confederacy.

      So you are wrong. The Jews funded both sides btw. So much for moral superiority.

  27. rube-i-con September 30, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

    Instead of the agrarian pattern of even development across the territory as stakeholders stayed in place and improved life wherever they were, we now cultivate a population of internal economic refugees and the territory becomes stratified between urban concentrations and rural vacancies.

    One of the most cogent comments I have read in a long time. Thanks a million.

    peace peaceniks

  28. rube-i-con September 30, 2013 at 2:31 pm #

    Brilliant and one of our greatest national acheivements
    why do American still exist in the dark ages ?..and make the poor and your kids…suffer without proper care

    Because, you know, fuck the children, poor people and people that can’t pay. We got money to make! Hey, they can’t pay, let ’em die! We want our money.

    I am aghast at the US ‘healthcare’ system.

    The US is merely a giant dollar-bill laying factory, and taxpayers are its unknowing servants.

    I’ll be in Australia soon, and loving it up with you Aussies. I am a highly desirable immigrant, by the way, so I will be welcomed with open arms. And I plan on working to make sure your wonderful healthcare system stays as effective as it is.

    Without law, without universal and almost-free/free healthcare, without education, a nation betrays its most basic obligations to its citizens.

    I’ll gladly pay 50% tax for a society that honours this most godly of commitments.

    peace peaceniks

  29. Warren September 30, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

    The sea water has flooded steerage, and is lapping on the second class promenade and our dysfunctional leaders are wondering why they can not get another round of drinks as they play cards in the first class lounge.

    The Government is financing itself not by its current revenues, (taxing) but by all of its current and many of its future revenues (taxing and bonds), and through the daily creation of several Billion of new digitized dollars.

    As a result of a failure of the US dollar, sometime in the not too distant future, a real shut down will happen, and not the soft kind of which they are discussing today, which, if it happens can be reversed, but one which will never end.

  30. shabbaranks September 30, 2013 at 2:50 pm #

    The market tells are coming in clear as day: weak prices for building materials, flatlined job growth, massive layoffs of mortgage finance trolls, and most importantly a tacit QE-forever call from the Fed. The Fed’s economists know the economy is getting weaker (just watch Q3 SP500 profit announcements) and that the price of that master commodity, oil, is not showing any signs of a major pullback lending further real-time credence to some version of the peak oil narrative.

    Single family housing is not “recovering” so the entire engine of economic growth predicated on the suburban build out is slowly coming to an end. In its place apartments and mixed use structures are being built. No jobs and zero inflation-adjusted income growth are steadily eroding the ability of individuals and families to get home loans. Apartments are the new substitute, not a bad result necessarily, but a clear sign of economic disempowerment.

    Jim quite rightfully identifies the macro risks of currency devaluation and rising interest rates that are the real fear of the Fed. Conclusion: raise some cash, pay debts, steer clear of bonds, purchase selective equities, continue to regularly purchase gold & silver, and have a backup plan at your home. Most importantly get to know your neighbors and your surroundings.

  31. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

    They’re going to start transferring the spent fuel rods at Fukashima soon. I hope that they’ve paid the Japanese workers? I hope that the Japanese workers aren’t in denial and regressed into a childlike state of tattoos, football, NASCAR, promiscuity, and fast food?

  32. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 5:05 pm #

    Of course, the proximate cause of Fukashima was a tsunami wave, but I wonder if Japan’s financial problems weren’t also a contributing factor?

  33. sevenmmm September 30, 2013 at 5:51 pm #

    Should this current issue be resolved.., I beg to know who will loan this government the cash to make receipts? Who is going to rescue the banks from bad debt? Who is going to rescue those in fancy houses 50 miles from work?

    I’ll tell you who: Mr. Nobody.

    Most government employees don’t have a clue, most of the citizens don’t have a clue, the politicians, staring down the cliff wall, still don’t have a clue. Now that the clues are beaning them in the head, they pass them off as errant paperboys.

    Damned if they do, damned if they don’t. There might not be enough room in prison, but there is enough room in hell, on Earth!

  34. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 6:19 pm #

    Meanwhile, the Chinese are resurrecting Mao and Maoism, but not very seriously, at least so far. They’re just kinda faking it, like Obama. I guess that the idea is to pretend to give the people what they want and maybe the people won’t notice what’s really in the Soylent Green?

  35. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

    With all of the budget cuts they’ll probably import cheap foreign workers on H work visas to run the US nuclear power plants?

  36. Pucker September 30, 2013 at 7:29 pm #

    I once knew a Hippie-look’n bloke who urinated out of a sky bucket at Six Flags Over Georgia many years ago. I wonder what prompted him to do that? I suspect that he may have been expressing anarchist sentiments about society and civilization?

  37. ozone September 30, 2013 at 7:54 pm #

    Another page in a long,strange history of cognitive dissonance or, “Toughen up, tough guys! Being voted into congressional office means never having to say you’re sorry or explaining what the hell you’re doing or thinking!”. Who do these people represent… and why?

    9/19/2013
    Congress cuts food stamp program. Perhaps those southern legislators are simply asking their constituents to toughen up for the coming insurgency by adopting ye olde “lean and hungry look”? Check our the juxtapositions; interesting (and big, big savings of federal revenues, I’m certain).

    informationclearinghouse.info/article36397.htm

  38. ozone September 30, 2013 at 8:08 pm #

    ” Portion of legislators who represent America’s hungriest counties who voted in favor of food stamp cuts: 2/3″

    That alone is worth the price of admission, and speaks directly to this:

    ” A theme in my 2005 book, The Long Emergency, was the counter-intuitive idea that the federal government, rather than becoming the omnipotent Big Brother Moloch so many feared, would instead spiral into impotence and become too incompetent and ineffectual to run everybody’s life. ” -JHK

    Purposely precipitating a descent into hunger for your constituents would seem about the stupidest thing you could legislate, but I guess that’s ‘how they roll’ now.

    (We can debate the finer points of governmental mandates for feeding people all the livelong day, but c’mon desperate starving people would rather have food than purist ideologies. If you don’t understand that, don’t become a bureaucrat or you’ll soon find yourself in an uncomfortably intimate closeness with rope and knots…)

  39. jimofolym September 30, 2013 at 8:21 pm #

    If they want to shut gummint down, they should shut down ALL of it, including air controllers, meat inspectors, the military, border guards, everyone, including paychecks for congresspeople and the president.
    Just shut the whole damn federal gummint, and see how long it takes for the tea partiers and everyone else to start screaming: Well I didn’t mean THAT!

  40. rube-i-con September 30, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

    man everyone out here is so apocalyptic. government was shut down in the 1990s. and here we are, 20 years later, with people still talking about it like it’s something newsworthy.

    look, the people in washington can print all the money they need to run anything they want. and they do it in spades. they have very powerful enforcement arms to make sure people accept their printed money, e.g. the military, cia, irs, diplomats et al.

    you can turn off your tv for 3 years and not much will change. we’ve been thru the financial meltdown and come out the other side sagging, but nowhere broken.

    whole bloody world wants greenbacks and perceives the states as the cat’s meow to be emulated.

    go with the flow, are you going to fight caesar?

    all in all, the US still provides a darn good place to live and work. so do other countries, but still…

    peace peaceniks

    • Karah October 1, 2013 at 3:23 pm #

      “you can turn off your tv for 3 years and not much will change.”

      Try 30 years! I keep seeing the same brown lanky middle eastern youth with a scarf over his face wearing dingy, cheap second hand t-shirts and polyester pants throwing rocks at a heavily armed tank shooting tear gas. I swear it’s the same guy from 30 years ago and he hasn’t aged a day! And what about all our American stars of the moment…most of them ape or strongly resemble stars from 30 years ago. Take our coinage and give our national fathers profiles a haircut and they look like every other president we’ve had, including Obama.

  41. progress4what September 30, 2013 at 9:22 pm #

    “The merits of the case for or against Obamacare are almost impossible for even well-informed and educated citizens to parse. You start with a law roughly 2,000 pages long, cobbled together largely by lobbyists for the insurance and medical industries,….”

    Yeah, It’s a mess, JHK. I don’t believe ACA, by itself will lead to Civil War II, however. And the legislation tips the scales at slightly less than 1000 pages, not the 2000 that is frequently bandied about. If anyone wants to take a look (and count the pages?) here’s a link – in all it’s lawyeristic, bureaucratic-speaking glory.
    gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-111publ148/pdf/PLAW-111publ148.pdf

    And – if you want to parse some meanings – start with Section 1553, and explain why this verbiage is necessary, and exactly what it means.

    “Section 1553. PROHIBITION AGAINST DISCRIMINATION ON ASSISTED SUICIDE.
    —The Federal Government, and any State or
    local government or health care provider that receives Federal
    financial assistance under this Act (or under an amendment made
    by this Act) or any health plan created under this Act (or under
    an amendment made by this Act), may not subject an individual
    or institutional health care entity to discrimination on the basis
    that the entity does not provide any health care item or service
    furnished for the purpose of causing, or for the purpose of assisting
    in causing, the death of any individual, such as by assisted suicide,
    euthanasia, or mercy killing. “

  42. progress4what September 30, 2013 at 9:30 pm #

    “Frankly, I don’t think this has anything to do with the economy. I think it’s a racial power play against a black president.
    I don’t like Obama; but my dislike is about policies, not color!”
    ….arn varnold….

    arn, this bit of prose of yours will sit at the front of this week’s CFN thread forever – and for a long as the internet exists.

    So would you mind elaborating on what you think it means?

    Because roughly 155,000,000 people (that’s 1/2 the country) are opposed to Obama. But they are all engaged in a “racist power play,” except for you. Only you are allowed to object to his “policies,” without being a racist.

    How do you do that?

    • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 1:56 am #

      Because roughly 155,000,000 people (that’s 1/2 the country) are opposed to Obama. But they are all engaged in a “racist power play,” except for you. Only you are allowed to object to his “policies,” without being a racist.

      How do you do that?
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Huh? That’s quite a leap, no? And how do I do what?
      IME, America is a very racist country. I have my prejudices, but not nearly as blatant as most.
      And just where did I say only I can object; don’t assume and don’t put words in my mouth, okay?
      I expected better from you…

      • Janos Skorenzy October 1, 2013 at 3:47 am #

        Define racist. Do you think that it is just Whites against Blacks? That’s not the dictionary definition.

        • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 5:23 am #

          Define racist. Do you think that it is just Whites against Blacks? That’s not the dictionary definition.
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          No.

    • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 9:48 am #

      arn, this bit of prose of yours will sit at the front of this week’s CFN thread forever – and for a long as the internet exists.

      Erm, live with it? What’s the big deal? Why the drama queen shtick?
      Jaysus…

  43. rube-i-con September 30, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

    Whites have to have needed skills to get into Australia.

    Strange, Janos, I just opined on exactly the same point. I think I really will go to Australia, where I will go looking for gold on my days off from my high-paying job.

    I will then acquire my 4th citizenship after a few years. It’s great to be mobile, when you can.

    peace peaceniks

  44. LLPete September 30, 2013 at 11:42 pm #

    JHK, I must say the quality of the comments have improved noticeably since you issued your “don’t be an idiot or I will ban you” warning. Let’s hope the food fight days are over and the tone of intelligent commentary continues. Good post this week as usual, and you sir, are one of a few select bona fide horsemen of the apocalypse. Thanks for your efforts and for providing this forum.

  45. BleatToTheBeat October 1, 2013 at 12:30 am #

    Is is shut down now?

    You’re sure….

    OK then….

    Let’s see those TITS!

  46. Pucker October 1, 2013 at 3:07 am #

    Government is just organized coercion, right?

    If so, it’ll coerce the society squeezing the people like a lemon.
    I think people are generally rather egotistical and therefore horrible. The last thing that should be done is to create hierarchies of power.

  47. James Kuehl October 1, 2013 at 7:15 am #

    Here’s a word about race from a guy who earned the right to spout off by virtue of having raised a mixed-race child here in pickup-truck-with-s-gun-rack country.

    Race is a social construction used to dominate other people. There is no taxonomic classification for race. Biological classifications include domain, kingdom, phylum class, order, family, genus, and species. You see any reference to skin color, eye shape, height, or hair type in there? These are the merely features that we’ve used to create this category called race. It’s social, not biological.

    There’s only one race, the human race, and it’s headed for extinction for behavior like inventing race to subjugate other people.

    I’m beginning to thing Vonnegut was right: humans are nasty little creatures and the planet will be much better off without us.

    • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 7:50 am #

      I’m beginning to thing Vonnegut was right: humans are nasty little creatures and the planet will be much better off without us.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Yes, but there are just enough people, who see, to make one appreciate the importance of true relationship with simpatico souls.
      Life is an endurance race; winning isn’t important, but finishing is everything…
      If one can do it with soul-mates; all the better…

      • James Kuehl October 1, 2013 at 3:10 pm #

        Arn,
        That’s good advice. I said something similar to a group of friends just yesterday. Better not to be so maudlin, and instead, chose who you hang with.

  48. ozone October 1, 2013 at 9:52 am #

    From the AP:

    “During a shutdown, essential federal employees are expected to report for duty but face delays in receiving their pay. Now, if the government really does shut down, members of the armed forces will receive their paychecks on time but civilian workers won’t.

    The House passed the legislation early Sunday morning.”

    Bwaak-bwaak-bwaak!
    Whadarya? Chicken? Some people more special americans than others or are you just a-skeert of highly-trained, heavily-armed, pissed-off folk? …Or do you need to keep them on your side? This part is exactly like I predicted.

  49. ozone October 1, 2013 at 10:10 am #

    Hey Kids!
    More shutdown fun with your breakfast cereal from your friends at Huff-Po! (By Wham-o!)

    huffingtonpost.com/news/government-shutdown/

    Scroll on down, and don’t forget to check Sen. Ted Cruz’s touching offer to donate his salary to charity for as long as the shutdown lasts. Won’t you help? We don’t want to see him put out on the streets in destitution.

  50. progress4what October 1, 2013 at 10:23 am #

    (the SNAP)….bill requires President Barack Obama to finally enforce the bipartisan 1996 welfare reforms to food stamps. The law Bill Clinton advocated for and signed states that if you are an able-bodied adult aged 18 to 50 without dependent children, you should have a job, be looking for a job, be training for a job or perform community service in order to receive government benefits. The president has been handing out exemptions to this law since 2009. We can generate $20 billion in savings by ending these waivers while encouraging able-bodied people to work.

    Second, we closed a loophole that automatically extends food stamp benefits to anyone who so much as receives a government brochure or calls a toll-free hotline, regardless of their income or assets. This “categorical eligibility,” allows lottery winners and millionaires to receive food stamps. Our bill doesn’t change income requirements. It simply requires people to actually meet them in order to qualify.

    These reforms save a modest 5.1 percent over a 10-year period in a program that has doubled in spending since Barack Obama became president by simply enforcing existing eligibility requirements for food stamps. They are critical if we are going to protect a program intended to serve our most vulnerable citizens including seniors, children and the disabled. These individuals shouldn’t have to foot the bill just so able-bodied adults can receive benefits without work.”

    Two sides (at least!) to every issue, Ozone – OK.
    agweek.com/event/article/id/21754/

    And isn’t it logical that your “Red State?” legislators are more likely to try to stop SNAP abuse because their constituents are the ones living it up close and personal?

    • ozone October 1, 2013 at 11:46 am #

      Absolutely more than 2 sides to any tetrahedron, but as I said:

      “(We can debate the finer points of governmental mandates for feeding people all the livelong day, but c’mon desperate starving people would rather have food than purist ideologies. If you don’t understand that, don’t become a bureaucrat or you’ll soon find yourself in an uncomfortably intimate closeness with rope and knots…)”

      That would be what I call a disclaimer toward your complaint.

      And this [read in its’ context] makes no sense whatsoever!

      “[Enforcing eligibility requirements is] critical if we are going to protect a program intended to serve our most vulnerable citizens including seniors, children and the disabled. These individuals shouldn’t have to foot the bill just so able-bodied adults can receive benefits without work.”

      So, the “most vulnerable citizens including seniors, children and the disabled” are going to “foot the bill”, eh? Good luck with that, since they haven’t got a pot to piss in, or a window to throw it out of. Sounds like it was written by a politician.
      (I’ll go to the link and see if it’s a bit clearer on that point.)

      Finally, I don’t quite get this either:

      “And isn’t it logical that your “Red State?” legislators are more likely to try to stop SNAP abuse because their constituents are the ones living it up close and personal?”

      Just like doing away with abortion clinics in the states with the most dependent out-of-wedlock children. Not smart, unless you’re fishing for federal welfare dollars.

      Do you mean the job-holding taxpayers are seeing foodstamp ‘abuse’ up close and personal, while a large percentage of the constituency is depending on the foodstamps? And where are all these ‘jobs’ they’re supposed to be working to ensure their eligibility?

      My point still stands, with or without the disclaimer:
      “They have no bread? …Then let them eat cake.”
      See where this could be headed, and why the fellow occupying the Oval Office might be deliberately side-stepping restrictions on access to FOOD? Well, not to worry, we have plenty of money for private prisons, so three hots and a cot for desperate folks won’t be a problem. (Prison guard is a job, too.)

      “It’s All Good!” -JHK

    • ozone October 1, 2013 at 11:52 am #

      During a government shutdown, one can:
      “Receive SNAP benefits: The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program will continue to operate.”

      Now, why would that be a priority?

    • ozone October 1, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

      Forgot one bit.

      In politico-speak, “abuse” means “use”, and that old well-polished turd, “reform” means, “restrict” or “erase”.

      Thank you, Frank Luntz; (with respect) may you be hunted down like a rabid dog…

  51. progress4what October 1, 2013 at 10:31 am #

    “IME, America is a very racist country. I have my prejudices, but not nearly as blatant as most.” ,,,,arn….

    You need to define your terms and boundaries, arn. Otherwise, you are spreading heat but not light – and using the undefined – yet enormously powerful – term of “racist,” to make yourself feel good on the anonymous internet.

    And I expect better from you, as well. hehe! Sparring, not drawing blood, remember?

    • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 7:44 pm #

      and using the undefined – yet enormously powerful – term of “racist,” to make yourself feel good on the anonymous internet.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Huh? Sorry, can’t and won’t deal with this silly accusation.

  52. progress4what October 1, 2013 at 10:38 am #

    (Defunding suburban sprawl)…would not go over so well in the big red Nascar states of Dixie, where driving in a car to do anything has been more-or-less mandatory for decades.” …jhk…

    Sorry, dude – but I’ve got to align with Karah in calling you on this.

    Examine your prejudices, much?

  53. progress4what October 1, 2013 at 10:40 am #

    And – just to ratchet up the paranoia, before I log out:

    “The public now has to think about the fact that anybody in public life, or person in a position of influence in government, business or bureaucracy, now is thinking about what the NSA knows about them. So how can we trust that the decisions that they make are objective and that they aren’t changing the decisions that they make to protect their career? That strikes at any system of representative government.” theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/30/microsoft-privacy-chief-nsa

  54. Florida Power October 1, 2013 at 8:21 pm #

    “I bet that would not go over so well in the big red Nascar states of Dixie, where driving in a car to do anything has been more-or-less mandatory for decades.”

    Well, we recognize these deep-rooted prejudices against Dixie that escape from time to time like so much urgent flatulence, and we forgive the excess, but some folks we know in the darkest recesses of the Piedmont can recall from the sixties mule-drawn wagons. Add to that outhouses and household water drawn from a dug well into the seventies and beyond (verified by found documents in an abandoned sharecropper cabin). So maybe two decades. Maybe. Dixie still has a lot of catching up to do, the tragedy of Atlanta notwithstanding.

    It’s all about convenience, the path of least resistance lit by the illusion of limitless energy inputs. There is no alternative, there is no solution.

    • ozone October 2, 2013 at 9:16 am #

      Pretty funny! 😀

      A thing I noticed from driving from Maryland to Nashville, TN was the preponderance of just-off-the-highway ‘convenience’ stops, where they offer over-priced everything. These are [generally] the only places to get ‘supplies’ for miles and miles and miles! Unless you grow your own soup to nuts, you MUST have a car to get to them, otherwise you’re in for a half-day walk. Is this a sensible arrangement? I think JHK has seen what mine eyes have seen, but couldn’t resist throwing in the car-centric NASCAR jab. (Lots of huge and fecund farms for sale along this way also; must be “moving to town” or just can’t afford the overhead any longer.)

      As far as mules? I wish I had the knowledge to care for and utilize a pair of ’em! That’s a useful skill. I’ve not enough cleared for them to find enough fodder… maybe a couple goats to pull a tiny cart. lol

      Around these parts, I could likely hit a plentiful supply of water at about 20 feet, but to dig and build a well [safely] you have to dig a huge cone-shaped hole, build the stone and backfill as you go up. Stones-R-Us, but one could be at this shoveling stuff for a looooong time!

      “It’s all about convenience, the path of least resistance lit by the illusion of limitless energy inputs. There is no alternative, there is no solution.” -F.P.

      You didn’t pull any punches there; I like your succinct style.

  55. Florida Power October 1, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    And another thing — for Arn:

    There are two bits of contemporary speech that have lost all meaning, but somehow retain cutting edge:

    1. Racist/racism
    2. National Security

    Take your pick. Each admits no rebuttal, no refutation based on rules of evidence. The first is so oversold that it has become useless but for the uneducated, which might earn you derision. The second can get you killed.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 1, 2013 at 11:11 pm #

      So can the first. Whites are killed all the time by Black Mobs chanting Racist. In Africa people are killed for being Witches who steal penises.

  56. Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

    Racism; a subject few want to acknowledge, few want to face, and, I’m afraid, will be with humanity until the end.
    Denial is a hallmark of American society.
    “Other” used to be a useful recognition, life saving even; but is now obsolete and a useless artifact.
    Opinions are like many body parts; everybody has them.
    Willful ignorance is tragic and name calling and childish deflections serve no useful purpose.
    Because of the anonymity of the internet genuine discourse/debate deteriorates to silliness and absurdity.
    Simple truths and realities become toys for clever people with too much time on there hands…

    • Arn Varnold October 1, 2013 at 9:50 pm #

      their

      • Florida Power October 2, 2013 at 6:31 pm #

        E.O. Wilson cites in The Social Conquest of Earth a study of group identity in which a white person was placed in a room full of black people and vice versa. In both cases monitored vital signs showed high anxiety levels that dissipated when the individual was returned to their own racial group. The point: racial identity or racism is inherent. For that matter tribal identity within a single racial group is inherent.

        The word “racist” has become reduced to absurdity, as in “those are really racist white socks you’re wearing today.” This is grammatical but in the real world it is ridiculous, yet one encounters the equivalent on an almost daily basis in the human barnyard.

        The fact that Obama was elected President says a lot about the evolution of popular consciousness in the USA. Consider the lyrics from the 1940s Glenn Miller song Chattanooga Choo Choo: “Pardon me boy, is that the Chattanooga Choo Choo?” “Yes, Yes, Track 29” “Boy, you can give me a shine!” We all know what is meant by “boy” and the social status of shoe shiners — a reflection of the race-based master-slave relationship. The words flowed without hesitation off the lips of the white singers as if the most innocuous reference to what was in fact a complex social phenomenon. Today, except for perhaps the skin-head neo-Nazi music subculture (which could in fact be correctly denounced as “racist” — and I would add, proud of it, which lobs the grenade back at the accuser) those lyrics sung by a white person with the same social signifiers would be impossible.

        Thus when I hear that partisans who disagree vehemently with the President’s policy are ipso facto racist my BS meter pegs and I am tempted to conclude: Black America is not ready yet for a black President. As I recall every President since Johnson has endured opposite-party criticism ranging from vitriolic to almost sadistic. Going back before my time I believe Roosevelt had his detractors, as did Lincoln, and certainly Jefferson and Adams. I think it is part of the job description.

        We should be much more concerned with the abuse of “national security.” Senators McCain and Graham allege that Syria represents a threat to “national security.” The FBI shuts down investigation into the execution of Todashev with the words “national security.” One imagines that the US Park Police denied a group of octogenarian veterans entrance to the WW II memorial today with the explanation: “national security.”

        Sorry Jim. I don’t think we can count on ineffectual incompetence. Maybe just plain old lethal clumsiness. This doesn’t end well.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 1, 2013 at 11:08 pm #

      Yes racism is so simple – that’s why you don’t want to define it because then we could talk about it. You prefer to accuse and then run – a classic liberal tactic. Name calling? You’re the one who did that. Look in the mirror before you call other people Witches, Witch.

      Chomsky admitted racism is natural but the New World Order hates it because it gets in the way of their plans and profits. In any case, one can’t believe in Nations if one is against it. As Burke reminds us, our prejudices are necessary to our Virtue. Or as Rilke said upon refusing psychoanalysis: I fear that my angels may be exorcised along with my demons.

      • Arn Varnold October 2, 2013 at 12:10 am #

        a classic liberal tactic. Name calling? You’re the one who did that.
        ~~~~~~~~~~~
        …and just where did I do that?
        Liberal? No, not lately…and I’m not running anywhere.
        I’ll not rise to the bait.

  57. progress4what October 2, 2013 at 8:58 am #

    “Frankly, I don’t think this has anything to do with the economy. I think it’s a racial power play against a black president.” ,,,arn….

    Looks like racial name-calling to me, arn.

    That was why I asked you to elaborate in the first place. I thought I had misunderstood.

    • Arn Varnold October 2, 2013 at 9:17 am #

      OMG! Racial name calling?
      Am I still on planet earth?
      If you cannot see the republican game plan and the venue on which they attack Obama; then there is no help for you.
      I hate the bastard (Obama), but, it’s all about drone wars, GITMO, NSA, Iran, and his Nobel peace prize, for the most murdering president in U.S. history.
      Black? What the fuck does that have to do with this?
      But for the republican party; that’s what this is all about!
      Name calling? Are you fucking mad?
      Get a fucking grip!

      • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 1:20 pm #

        You are calling half the Whites in this country “raciss” Witches – a magical word you are unable or unwilling to define. And then you are amazed that people take issue with being slandered. Dude you are half crazy and more than half evil.

        By the way, why shouldn’t people want to be ruled by their representatives – men of their own race and culture? Blacks and Hispanics vote their race all the time. Are they raciss Witches too? No, right? Just Whites.

        • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 12:32 am #

          You are calling half the Whites in this country “raciss” Witches…
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          Where do you get this shit?
          You just make it up as you go?
          Gods be good; I said no such thing.

    • ozone October 2, 2013 at 9:21 am #

      Prog,
      If you don’t think there’s an undertone of that anywhere in Congress, just say so. I’ll take your word for it. 😉

      • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 1:23 pm #

        Know that crazy Black Women who wears a cowboy hat? The National Black Caucas wanted to make her National Security Advisor. Is it raciss to be against that? Eh, genius?

  58. Deblonay October 2, 2013 at 9:57 am #

    Re Australia and rights of entry
    ____________

    Rub-I-con and Janos and others

    To enter Australia all foreigners need a visa…a tourist visa is easily obtained ,but work visas…as in the case of the USA …must be obtained after following various formalities before entry and are not easily granted
    Failure to do co can led to arrest and deportation

    To emmigrate to Australia requires certain other formalisties and that cannot always be gauranteed either

    I come to the US from time to time to visit family…I have a son married to an American ..and American grand-children there… but my visa is for a limted time of stay…generally several months as a tourist…but I have no wish to live in the USA anyway

    If you are able to migrate to Australia and pay taxes you are covered by the National Health Scheme as is every Australian
    You them get a Health Scheme credit card

    I then present this to the desk when I visit my GP at his clinic..and this then makes the payment from the Fund to him…instantly..and at any place where I get medical aid or care..an ambulance/hospital/clinic whatever the system pays for my care instantly …by electronic tansfer
    I use the card when paying for medications at my pharmacy…and also a have a special called “Safety Net” to show that I and my wife don’t have to pay more than $300 per year for medications
    The system worls smoothly…and any politicians or party that tried to change or end the scheme would meet total disaster at the next elections…no conservatives in Australia ever oppose the Scheme
    or make a case against it…and that I think will happen in the USA with Obamacare in the future

    • Arn Varnold October 2, 2013 at 10:05 am #

      Wow, what a civilized society you live in, amazing.
      Woulds’t that were true in America…

    • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 1:27 pm #

      The Elite plan to fill up Australia with Asians and Muslims to prevent any chance of it ever recovering as a White Western Republic. Obviously the health care system will crash if and when they bring in too many. Or if the Muslims start having a dozen kids per couple.

      A welfare state with open borders is doomed. Otherwise it might work but the heavy taxes and generous social services do have a tendency to cause people to slack off since hard work wont bring comparable rewards.

  59. BackRowHeckler October 2, 2013 at 11:01 am #

    That total collapse and shooting in the streets as predicted in early August for the month of September never materialized. September has come and gone. I can’t tell if these predictions are meant to be taken seriously or are just hyperbole. Today is a beautiful day … blue sky, warm temperatures, bright sun, and the leaves on the maples and elms just beginning to show traces of crimson and gold, shimmering in the sunlight. The government is ‘shut down’, whatever that means, but life goes on anyway. The street murders in Hartford and New Haven have even ceased (for the time being).

    Life in the country can be quite pleasant even when time is running out, if it is indeed running out. The Long Emergency won’t be so bad if it goes on like this. Think of Italians in 9th century Rome, among those exquisite ruins, in that warm Med climate, 15000 people in a city that once held 2 million just a few centuries before.

    –BRH

    • Panic October 2, 2013 at 10:23 pm #

      ‘ The street murders in Hartford and New Haven have even ceased (for the time being).’
      REPORT BACK ONCE THE EBT STOPS.

  60. stelmosfire October 2, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    I have so many apples, pears, squash, and tomatos, not to mention the dandelions and Japanese greens, peppers cabbage etc. etc. I drive my wife nuts when I bring in baskets of this S*** . I try to get it to her work but even her co-workers won’t take the shit. No spray all organic. I tried to sell apples for a dime apiece and sold 3. People go to the local super market and pay $1.59 a pound. That is maybe 3 apples.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 1:30 pm #

      Why don’t you donate them to the poor? A soup kitchen would love to have them. The fruits of the Earth belong to all. You were just the means of their fruition. Rejoice in this. If it was all up to you, nothing would have grown at all.

    • Panic October 2, 2013 at 10:25 pm #

      Then grow Mushrooms or whatever will sell. Or trade for plants, tools, or whatever.
      At the local Farmers Market fruit is going for 4$/pound now.

  61. Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

    Culture is important too as Back Row Heckler always reminds us. If a White Man shows up in robes and a turban, well Back Row wont vote for him even if Black Ho does. Back Row wants an edjucated version of himself wearing a nice suit and shit: the thin man of Haddam.

    • BackRowHeckler October 2, 2013 at 5:12 pm #

      Vlad, you’re losing me. What the hell are you talking about?

      Something tells me you don’t have many friends. Am I right?

      BRH

      • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

        I’m agreeing with you that culture matters. No more robes and incense. The eight handed god gots to go. Just real Men of all Colors shooting anything that moves. That’s why I love Zimmerman even though he isn’t White. Nobody’s perfect. And by that I don’t mean to say that Whites are either. Character isn’t inherited. Zim has done the best with the hand he was dealt. Remember Christ’s parable of the talents.

        • BackRowHeckler October 3, 2013 at 6:19 pm #

          Vlad, sometimes you have an abstruse way of putting things.

          Sorry for the insult, bud.

          BRH

  62. Deblonay October 2, 2013 at 1:57 pm #

    Australian welfare provisions
    In Australia there is a weekly cash payment(dole) for unemployyed,and similar for disabled persons
    There are no food stamps tese would be seen as rather deemening to the poor
    There is also a family benefit for all children under 18 years of age
    and similar other benefits for families..[aid to the Mother

    The Aged receive a pension….or part pension depending on the size of your income from other saving etc

    All have medical benefits from the National Health
    All in the work force have an entitled to four weeks paid annual leave…and various amouynts of sick leave

    Mothers of new born babies can get 16 weeks pay from the Govt.at the minimum wage rate( $18 an hou for an 8 hour day) to care for the new born child …This maternity leave also can be taken by the father instead of the Mother if that is wanted by the couple

    There are many free clinics …Baby Health centres… to give small kids the attention of trained staff in the early years of a childs life. These are free to any parent whenever required and as often as wanted
    Australians expect nothing less,especially for kids

    • ozone October 2, 2013 at 5:36 pm #

      That’s nice, but does that also apply to brown/bronze-skinned citizens? As you know, privileges should be stratified according to skin tone. That’s how we determine human worth; the lighter, the better. (Many studies and opinions of famous people have shown this. Don’t deny it or you’ll be called a “stupidhead”; here’s hoping you’ll answer correctly.) 😉

      • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 6:37 pm #

        How many of these do you think Australia can afford? Millions more? And still be prosperous? Still be Australia? Think hard before you don’t answer. Remember Australia is mostly desert and has a low carrying capacity even if its mineral reserves are generous. And don’t forget about social capital either – which diversity destroys. You don’t know too much about anything do ya? Lastly, ask if Australia really needs more unskilled foreigners from alien cultures. So have you repented of your foolishness?

        • Panic October 2, 2013 at 10:20 pm #

          Australia is near 4 ? billion people. Third world and primitive.
          China, India, Africa, Middle east.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 10:40 pm #

            Panic in Year Zero. Good movie. Australia now calls itself “Asian” – evidently slated to be part of the Asian Economic Union. The various Unions will be joined to create the World State. Also it appears to be an Elite Refuge during the Time of Troubles to come.

  63. hawk711 October 2, 2013 at 5:54 pm #

    As usual, right on the money.

    You can read parts 3 & 4 of the Obamacare Wars at

    http://jimheald.blogspot.com

  64. ozone October 2, 2013 at 6:00 pm #

    Deblonay,
    Sorry for that tangential foolery.
    Now back to cases on the withholding of care in the health department:
    JHK sez,
    ” The merits of the case for or against Obamacare are almost impossible for even well-informed and educated citizens to parse. You start with a law roughly 2,000 pages long, cobbled together largely by lobbyists for the insurance and medical industries, both of them hideous rackets, and move to a labyrinth of 50 different state’s systems for administering the darn thing, and then consider the supposed beneficiaries, namely young people so burdened by college loans in an economy that only offers minimum wage scut-jobs that, from one day to the next, they probably don’t know whether to shit or go blind. They don’t even have the scratch to pay the opt-out tax, let alone purchase an insurance policy.”

    And Paul Craig Roberts has got a perspective too. (Imagine that!)

    paulcraigroberts.org/2013/10/01/obamacare-another-private-sector-rip-americans/

  65. Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 6:41 pm #

    The source of Arn’s “inspiration”:amren.com/news/2013/10/government-shutdown-due-to-the-color-of-obamas-skin-suggests-ivy-league-prof-…

    • Arn Varnold October 2, 2013 at 9:25 pm #

      You are a real piece of work; my source is my own observations, research, and listening to non-MSM news sources and critical thinking.

      And I don’t put words in others mouth; witches? I have not used that term on this or any other forum. From what I can see, a reasonable conversation with you would be impossible.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 10:21 pm #

        Oh I’m sorry! Let’s start again. You first. What’s a racist?

        It’s Philosophy 101 folks – define your terms. Otherwise people will have heated debates lasting hours with each side not understanding the other. They may even be in agreement or they could be talking about completely different things. So when a person refuses to define his terms, his or her sincerity is to be doubted. And these vague type of hideous but undefined accusations are the very essence of tyranny. The Salem Witch Trials were a classic example. Or Orwell’s masterpiece on bureaucracy, The Trial. That’s why the Founders in their wisdom refused to allow the State to hold people without accusing them of something. But since Arn is a Liberal (and even conservatives and communists are now), he thinks he’s better than the Founders and doesn’t have to honor the Constitution. Why bother since we have a Negro Demi-God in charge?

        • Arn Varnold October 2, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

          But since Arn is a Liberal (and even conservatives and communists are now), he thinks he’s better than the Founders and doesn’t have to honor the Constitution. Why bother since we have a Negro Demi-God in charge?
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          There will be no discussion; your assumptions and arrogance are just too off-putting.
          Carry on as you will; I’ll not be part of it.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 12:35 am #

            Oh MY assumptions? You’re the one who started slandering White people. Your kind have played a big part in poisoning the well here in America. Racism is a Marxist cognitive weapon after all – which is why you wont define it. Once defined, I could take it apart and you along with it.

        • BleatToTheBeat October 2, 2013 at 11:11 pm #

          Here’s some Philosophy for you.

          “(CNN) — After more than 40 years of having his claims of an unjust murder conviction go unanswered, Louisiana inmate Herman Wallace is now a free man.

          But it may be a Pyrrhic victory.

          Wallace, who spent decades in solitary confinement, is terminally ill with liver cancer.

          He was released after a judge vacated his murder conviction and sentence, one of his attorneys told CNN.

          State officials had been threatened with contempt if they did not release Wallace immediately.”

          • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 12:38 am #

            Yes it sounds like more race based corruption. The murderer should die in prison. But I guess because he’s a Black Panther and a Black is in the White House that some of this is inevitable.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:12 am #

            The new Ironsides is on. He’s Black and torturing a White prisoner. The New America: Arn’s America.

  66. Panic October 2, 2013 at 10:19 pm #

    Besides myself, Tripp, Q; are others having difficulty logging in?
    I dont like the redesign of this site.

    What do others think?

    For those who care, much info about ‘Barry’ at
    COMMIE BLASTER.COM

    And more infiltration:
    here:

    exposethegulenmovement.org/2013/09/27/education-jihad-sweeps-the-country-a-guide-to-the-gulen-school…

    • Janos Skorenzy October 2, 2013 at 10:36 pm #

      Great link. I hadn’t heard of this movement specifically, but many Muslim groups are doing similar things. Maybe some Jewish ones too.

  67. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 12:37 am #

    I wonder if ubiquitous fraud in the U.S. may play a role in the U.S. collapse similar to the role that ethnic strife placed in the collapse of the former Soviet Union?

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 12:45 am #

      Can you tell us more about the ethnic strife in the Soviet Union? And why it wont play a part here too?

  68. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 12:48 am #

    I suspect that in the U.S.–unlike the former USSR—it’s unlikely that ethnic groups will declare the U.S. Constitution and US law inapplicable to them and seize caches of weapons and form their own independent armies. But maybe I’m wrong?

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:14 am #

      Yeah maybe since the two situations differ on that point: Americans are heavily armed already. But are you talking about the Nations of Eastern Europe doing this? That’s a big difference certainly.

  69. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 1:41 am #

    I’m referring to the former republics of the Soviet Union that broke away when the former Soviet Union collapsed, like Lithuania, and Bum-Holistan. (I heard that there may be a secret U.S. military base now in Bum-Holistan that the U.S. taxpayers and the Saudis may be paying for?)

    In the U.S., maybe we’ll get lucky if some U.S. states decide to abrogate the U.S. debt and leave the Union?

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:23 pm #

      Oh well that is very different. Our gangs, ethnic groups, and thought groups don’t have nearly the chance of breaking away that actual nations did. That’s a much higher level or organization.

  70. James Kuehl October 3, 2013 at 7:11 am #

    Interesting discussions about race in America. Kunstler has summed this up before, too, as a permanent cultural morass from which we have neither the collective intellect nor will to outgrow.

    It’s the Peter Principal, with which few people are familiar. A symptom of incompetence is redirecting attention to something irrelevant, but that one can handle. Dr. Peter’s example is the inept teacher who makes sure the window blinds are perfectly aligned.

    Americans as a lo, share a weakness of character when it comes to respecting others beyond the surface measurements of wealth, athletic ability, breast size, skin color, automobile brand, and so on. We’re shallow people who lucked into lots of economic and ballistic firepower. But we’re feeble in the nobility department, in spite of our Hollywood self-image.

    Competence is not an overlay that can be faked

    • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 8:18 am #

      Oh lordy, lordy; thank you so much for that post.
      I couldn’t agree more.
      You are a breath of fresh air to this stilted, and damned, attempt at a discussion.
      My diplomatic skills disintegrated about 10 years ago when I hit 58.
      Cheers.
      I’m a grumpy SOB who forgot how to take prisoners…

    • ozone October 3, 2013 at 9:07 am #

      “Americans as a lot, share a weakness of character when it comes to respecting others beyond the surface measurements of wealth, athletic ability, breast size, skin color, automobile brand, and so on. We’re shallow people who lucked into lots of economic and ballistic firepower. But we’re feeble in the nobility department, in spite of our Hollywood self-image.”

      To me, it’s no longer a matter of character or nobility. Respect for others is a demand of survival of the species. (And no, Mr. Bus-Station-Pest, darker-skinned folk are not of a different species.)
      Discrimination now is between the intellectually curious and the stone stupid; the giver and the thief; the flexible and the hidebound; the builder and the destroyer; etc.

      Mutual respect and trust is a downright practical matter after all the layers of bullshit are sluiced away.
      ************************************************

      Arn, what do you mean about forgetting how to take prisoners? (Diplomacy is wasted on gimlet-eyed true believers and those whose ambitions of control exceed their poor social skills.)

      • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 9:49 am #

        Arn, what do you mean about forgetting how to take prisoners?
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        Good question.
        I’m burned out on stupidity and rhetoric; I’m fed up with provincialism, nationalistic nonsense, and just general propagandist bullshit.
        Show me a non-ethnocentric dialogue/thought, free of propaganda but rich in critical thinking and original thought; not clouded by government dictum’s or personal ideologies.
        Not taking prisoners means I won’t suffer fools and bullshit and will call it all out for what it is. It means I won’t engage a dialogue I deem worthless.
        You actually asked a question. How refreshing is that? Very, IME.
        Too often, we charge in (guilty of said) and assume, without any understanding, we know what said commentator means by what they said.
        Thank you so much for that question. Cheers…

        • ozone October 3, 2013 at 10:31 am #

          Clearly understood, thanks.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:02 pm #

          A number of people asked you to clarify your position. You refused with indignation. But you’ll talk to Ozone because he shares your prejudices to a T. Liberalism is a cult.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

        Are pit bulls the same as poodles? Same species though. Are wolves the same species as dogs? No? But they can breed together, right?. Don’t bust a mental nut punk – you’re just wrong. Races can vary tremendously – so much so that sometimes they are classified as different species.

  71. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 8:05 am #

    The “Chosen People” are Korean, right?

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:32 pm #

      Do you know any Koreans? They think they are the Chosen. And even if they don’t, they feel that way.

      It’s called being a People who have your own Nation. It’s healthy. Is there a higher stage – where you can look over your fence and talk to your neighbors? Appreciate their fruits and flowers? Trade your tomato for their squash? Sure, but that’s different than breaking down the fence and pretending to be ALL ONE. Think that might cause some problems? Liberals don’t.

      Many Traditionalists attained the higher stage. But they simply didn’t think that negated the lower ones. Liberals think the higher negates the lower. Or sometimes their psychic state isn’t higher at all – the feeling of being the chosen simply becomes one of holding the right beliefs. Thus Arn feels no kinship with other Americans but complete kinship with other retired bureaucrats in East Waziristan as long as they believe in Man as God.

      • James Kuehl October 4, 2013 at 8:52 am #

        It has to do with one’s frame of reference. I worked with a Korean whose wife walked ten paces behind him and stared at the ground. It was depressing for me, normal for them, so I got over it.

        • Arn Varnold October 4, 2013 at 9:22 am #

          That is very much my experience in S.E. Asia; very different from western culture.
          We cannot ,very well, tell them they are wrong.
          Culture crash/clash; and us westerners, who insist we’re right, are the major losers.
          Another very perceptive post, thank you.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 4, 2013 at 2:06 pm #

          Yes, we have to realize that we live in a Pluriverse not a Universe. We are never going to agree with other Nations and Races. We have to work on agreeing with each other and if we can’t – agree to disagree and then separate. A House divided against itself can not stand. We will be conquered by Aliens unless we get our act together. America should split up before that happens. Arn and I will never agree since he doesn’t believe that Nations should exist. I think him and his have the right to their folly, but why should me and mine have to suffer the same fate – of being ruled by Others? That’s agony. We’ve forgotten since we’ve been free for so long.

  72. progress4what October 3, 2013 at 9:30 am #

    “I hate the bastard (Obama), but, it’s all about drone wars, GITMO, NSA, Iran, and his Nobel peace prize, for the most murdering president in U.S. history.” ,.,,,arn….

    So, it’s OK to oppose Obama as long as you oppose him from the “left.” You are aware that’s what you are saying.

    But opposition from the “right” is “racism,” again by your words!

    “Black? What the fuck does that have to do with this?”…arn….
    That’s my question, arn. We already know your answer.

    • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 9:54 am #

      That’s my question, arn. We already know your answer.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      LOL, this place is amazing…
      Well then, I don’t even need to respond; thanks for saving me the effort…

    • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 9:58 am #

      But opposition from the “right” is “racism,” again by your words!
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      You are a typical Sophist; those are not exactly my words; they’re totally out of context!
      Nice try, not!

  73. progress4what October 3, 2013 at 9:41 am #

    “If you don’t think there’s an undertone of that (racism) anywhere in Congress, just say so. I’ll take your word for it.”….ozone….

    Ozone, “undertone” is a good, undefined, word for casting aspersions on an entire half of the US governing body.

    And I can say with confidence, after a long career in public service, that “racism” by a white man is a career ending trait – and I’m certain this applies to modern conservative politicians, whose every utterance is examined for evidence of such racism.

    • ozone October 3, 2013 at 10:04 am #

      Take it easy now. You’re beginning to miss simple meanings.
      ANYWHERE does not imply “half”. Why would you assume this? I suspect everyone equally, as I believe you know.
      But, I’ll take your word for it that there is no evidence of racism “anywhere” in the halls of Congress.
      Good then, all traces of Lee Atwater (and unrepentant haters of every stripe and skin-tone) purged and gone.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:12 pm #

        Oh come on, you can’t blame White Men for trying to keep the Nation they built. If we hadn’t conquered the Indians and displaced them, you wouldn’t be sitting up there in the ‘shires on your skinny honky ass. Have some gratitude to better men than yourself. Or go back to Europe Whitey – as the Mexicans now tell us to do.

        In other words, this multi-hue and cultural mess called America never had a chance of lasting once we foolishly relinquished control.

    • James Kuehl October 4, 2013 at 8:56 am #

      I assume you refer to the Trent Lott types who are pilloried for overt racism. It’s the covert discrimination that endures, and does not end careers, based on the number of bigot’s retirement parties I’ve attended. And I’m not talking about the low rungs on the ladder, either.

  74. progress4what October 3, 2013 at 10:24 am #

    “Frankly, I don’t think this has anything to do with the economy. I think it’s a racial power play against a black president.” …arn….

    Before Gawd, arn, are not these words yours?

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:20 pm #

      Arn and Ozone got a special memo the rest of us didn’t get. On it was an addition to the Bill of Rights: You have a right not to listen or respond to things you don’t like. You see they believe that Civil Society is supposed to be easy and anyone who says anything unpleasant is the devil. Now where in the Constitutional Literature and History is this anything to this effect? Which great Legislator or Jurist ever said that Civil Society is going to be easy and effortless?

      It’s obvious to any decent and educated person of good judgment that the opposite is true. Liberalism has been going off on a false tangent for generations now.

    • Arn Varnold October 3, 2013 at 6:59 pm #

      Yes, I said that.

      I didn’t say this;
      But opposition from the “right” is “racism,” again by your words!
      No, those are your words/interpretation.

  75. Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

    The National Health Care number spells out Fuck yo. Coincidence?

    dailycaller.com/2013/10/03/need-health-care-coverage-just-dial-1-800-fuckyo-to-reach-obamacares-nati…

  76. volodya October 3, 2013 at 4:06 pm #

    According to Gordon T Long (see the zero hedge website), the USA offshored 46,000 factories to China over a ten year period. This is the root of America’s economic demise. This and 100 dollar oil.

    See that 16 trillion dollar financial asteroid speeding towards you? It is the creation of a federal government deprived of tax dollars because of this offshoring to China. And because of tax cuts designed to enrich the rich. Millions of American jobs relocated to China, millions of American tax payers ejected from the tax paying middle class. And so bankruptcy for the US government beckons.

    The fate of the average American will be a threadbare life. That is, unless and until new arrangements for production and consumption are created. And even then, who knows?

    If you look at the world from a top down perspective it’s hard to see how these new arrangements will come about given the insistent denial of reality by big thinkers in business and government and the academy.

    Just as surely as we’re sitting here the big thinkers will not budge from their accustomed ways. After all, they created the world as it is. They created it to benefit themselves. To them, the world they created is the world as it ought to be.

    No, new arrangements will have to come from the bottom up and, without doubt, in the face of ferocious opposition from those same big thinkers. The elite don’t want change. They like things as they are. They have a stake in the status quo.

    These insane arrangements – China produces, America consumes – is wrecking the United States. But they are just as surely wrecking China. If I was Chinese I’d be wondering how an economy built for the purpose of exporting manufactured products can continue to export to a country that no longer has the means to buy.

    So, will the Chinese wake up and smell the coffee? Will they act in time to avert disaster?

    Not so confident about an awakening in the US. No apparent coffee smelling there.

  77. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 5:52 pm #

    “So, will the Chinese wake up and smell the coffee? Will they act in time to avert disaster?”

    With the economy in China slowing, the leadership is worried. The Chinese people, it seems, have decided that after 30 + years of open door raw primitive accumulation of capital that they may prefer the security of M..a..oism after all. The common Chinese people are nostalgic about the M..a,o years. I normally don’t think of the Cul,,tural R,,ev ol,ution as being a particularly romantic period, but what-the-hey, let the good times roll, baby!

    The point is that China is a society with a strong proclivity for psychologically going off the deep end.

  78. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 5:54 pm #

    I blame Obama for not now taking strong proactive action to ensure the safety of U.S. nuclear power plants during the current economic contraction and future economic and political collapse. This is a huge failure of leadership, and it has nothing to do with the color of his skin.

  79. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 6:04 pm #

    With all the US government federal and state budget cuts, I wonder how long it will take before some bureaucrat comes up with the “brilliant idea” of importing Pakistani nuclear power plant workers on H-1B visas to run US nuclear powers plants in order to save a few bucks?

    I read somewhere that they think that the Chernobyl explosion may have resulted in part from the fact that the local Soviet government hadn’t paid the workers in the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, and, as a result, some employees had resorted to running sideline businesses such as selling vodka. You can’t even make this shit up!

    Millions of people have died (and millions more will continued to die) because of Chernobyl.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 3, 2013 at 6:14 pm #

      But there is no cloud however so dark without a silver lining: the area around Chernobyl has become one of the largest nature preserves left in Europe. Irradiated deer, wolves, boars, and even bears cavort throughout the strange plants and gently glowing landscape. They show no ill effects. Whatever mutations there are simply die as they deserve to. Is this not supremely hopeful? The Earth abides! Man too will survive nuclear warfare at least in some places. Of course the animals that were near when it happened may well have died on a massive scale and these are the undocumented migrants.

  80. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 6:33 pm #

    “Chernobyl has become one of the largest nature preserves left in Europe. Irradiated deer, wolves, boars, and even bears cavort throughout the strange plants and gently glowing landscape. They show no ill effects. ”

    I’ve heard this story as well. I’m not sure that I buy it.

    I wonder if there’s some kind of underground community of zombie survivors at Chernobyl that only emerge from their subterranean world after dark, like in some futuristic HG Wells novel?

  81. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 6:39 pm #

    I once saw a documentary about some remnant biological weapons facility somewhere in Russia abandoned since the collapse of the USSR. It was weird and freakie. The facility looked like it had just been abandoned. Almost as if the Soviet government hadn’t paid the biological weapons workers so they just dropped everything and walked away to go forage for wild potatoes or something.

  82. Pucker October 3, 2013 at 7:40 pm #

    Create a society, like the USSR or the U.S. today, where society does not ascribe meaning to anything truly meaningful, then once the money stops, then people will just say: “F…ck it.”, and walk away to do something that benefits them immediately, even if, in some cases, the consequences of walking away could be catastrophic for the society.

  83. Nicholas October 3, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

    Dysfunction is the new normal while a socioeconomic super storm is on the horizon. Then What? Try to take things into you own hands: The Alliance to Reconstruct America
    http://www.holigent.org

    • Janos Skorenzy October 4, 2013 at 1:25 am #

      No you don’t understand Nick: they want to down America so that the Global State can emerge. And doing so is profitable since we can’t compete with coolie labor without becoming coolies ourselves. That’s phase One. Robots are going to make most coolies obsolete as well. That’s where the die off comes in. You can’t reason with these monsters – who are behind the Environmental Movement – they can only be defeated.

      Does it sound odd? But it will make sense the more you think about it. No one goes into the King’s forest but the King and the Nobles. Yes, they intend a new high tech Medevialism. And we lesser beings who are allowed to survive are to be packed into the cities. The countryside is only for agricultural workers and the super rich. It’s called Agenda 21.

  84. communitymotive October 4, 2013 at 12:00 am #

    “defunding suburban sprawl” Using your time machine, that could correct the budget in the present.

    • Karah October 6, 2013 at 1:59 am #

      I think I get the whole sprawl thing now. It’s become a cultural thing. Cultural things don’t always make sense but they make us feel better about ourselves. Our nation feels really good about the automobile and so far it hasn’t let us down yet.

      Budgets exist after the fact of wanting something. If we had everything we wanted we wouldn’t need to spend anything. JHK’s austerity kick is interesting but I don’t believe entirely HONEST. So the desire for something more and better fuels our economic lives.

      Efficiency in the private sector pays for representatives in the public sector to be indulgent and stand for hours preaching a cause. Congress is really a legal entity where most people have law degrees steeped in the ways of protecting American economic prosperity (which includes suburban sprawl but is not dependent on it). Businesses exist to satisfy the changing customs and desires of people. Of course, if we were all engrossed in production we wouldn’t have time to play politician and fashionista.

  85. Janos Skorenzy October 4, 2013 at 1:18 am #

    Interesting study of the effects of starvation done during WW2. The men thought themselves normal – everyone else looked fat just as anorexics say. No long term damage – going thru a bit of this is part of our evolutionary heritage.

    madsciencemuseum.com/msm/pl/great_starvation_experiment

  86. Arn Varnold October 4, 2013 at 2:59 am #

    JHK;
    … If congress is really hot to de-fund something, I suggest they start with defunding suburban sprawl, which enjoys more direct government subsidy than even the medical racket. I bet that would not go over so well in the big red Nascar states of Dixie, where driving in a car to do anything has been more-or-less mandatory for decades…
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Joe Bageant addressed that beautifully in; Rainbow Pie: A Redneck Memoir.
    The wackos in Washington will have done us in, unless, a modicum, nay, a huge amount of sanity is found in the loony bin.
    Elizabeth Warren gave an amazing speech here;
    deathandtaxesmag.com/206955/watch-elizabeth-warren-and-bernie-sanders-throw-down-about-the-shutdown/
    There is a congresswoman worth her salt.

  87. Deblonay October 4, 2013 at 11:12 am #

    Seeing Chjina again
    _______
    I just recently visited China again after several years absence and the growth is quite astonishing everywhere

    Hong Kong remains as dynamic as usual,and of course diffenent from all other cities there..with vast shops and acres of food places which serve everykind of food in the world

    Shanghai is more like a dynamic Chinese version of Singapore(another chinese city really !)..and the infrastructure growth everywhere is amazing..with much housing /apartment growth

    There is a whole new city across the Podong River but the older waterfront”Bund” area has been restored,and the old hotels and dept stores are in grand condition..many now in restored 1920ies style decor..with lavish fittings and entertainments and food everywhere

    I took one of the new hi-speed trains from there to Beijing and one covers the journey in 4-5 hours… which once took half a day
    The Hi-Speed trains offer every comfort

    In Shanghai there is a new Hi-Speed train from the airport to the inner city …a kind of hi-speed German- built Monorail which goes at over 300 ks and has one in the city in a short time from an amazing new airport…though not as spendid as the new one in Beijing…….

    ..where the new railway station is also splendid..and handles 300.000 passengers a day with a special Hi-Speed terminal and lounges for passengers waiting for trains to many regions of China
    from Beijing
    Of course all the cities are shoppers paradises and the locals seem wsell dressed and well fed and have every kind of electronic gadget …cell phones are universal in the big cities..even with small kids using them
    There is another China in the countryside,but on a long train journey to Wuhan I saw very fertile and intensively cultivated farmland and many solid and substantial houses in the villages our train passed through
    all told a remarkable time

  88. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 8:50 pm #

    What is the “Trans-Pacific Partnership” and which countries are member countries? Thanks.

  89. progress4what October 4, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

    Ozone – your idea from a couple of days ago that the politicos all agreed to pay the military to stop a “revolt?” from starting up, was interesting. Personally, I suspect that it has as much to do with a politicians fear of Bad PR, as it does of his fear of a military coup.

    Just to vent, I’ve come to consider Federal employees consistently overpaid, top to bottom. They also have a better benefits package than average. They are also pretty arrogant, from what I can glean. (This goes double for all NSA/FBI/DoD types who are being PAID to assess the internet, and who may happen upon these words.)

  90. progress4what October 4, 2013 at 9:16 pm #

    Arn – what I was trying to get at was what I consider to be your overly casual use of the word “racial.” It’s too powerful an accusation to be used in that manner.

    Of course, you are FAR from alone in so doing, and I’m tired of trying to save the world by myself.

    • Arn Varnold October 5, 2013 at 4:34 am #

      Arn – what I was trying to get at was what I consider to be your overly casual use of the word “racial.” It’s too powerful an accusation to be used in that manner.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Fine. That is your opinion; I don’t happen to share it.
      America fancies itself as above racism, the MLK days were successful, and we’ve moved on.
      That, IMO, is tacitly wrong. Your aversion to the term is interesting, but until Americans wake up from their denial mode, it’s not going to improve. Further, to assume I’m only talking about white people is ludicrous.
      I born and grew up in N.Y. (out on Long Island) and was introduced to white on black prejudice by my second grade teacher Mrs. Browning. She slapped my fellow second grader Albert across the face because he talked back after being wrongly accused of something (I can’t really remember for what). Do the math; I still remember those names, those were real people. That was about 1951 or 2.
      I’ve fought racism ever since and to this very day. I’ve lived a very diverse life in many cultural/ethnic neighborhoods and to listen to somebody pick nits about the use of a very powerful word, with proven, demonstrated, deadly consequences, strikes me as confounding.
      I’m now somewhat convinced it’s (fighting racism) a loosing battle; but a battle worth fighting. I won’t have it in my friends or social sphere.
      I’ve called out fellow workers in company lunch rooms for gross anti-racist words and speech.
      You’re not going to save the world, nor am I, but, one battle at a time, stand up for the right thing.
      I’m more than a decade living half way around the world, in a hugely different culture, and as with all cultures that I’ve experienced, there is innate prejudice and racism. I make it understood I don’t share those beliefs; that’s as much as I can do here.
      Cheers.

      • Arn Varnold October 5, 2013 at 5:29 am #

        …for gross anti-racist words and speech.
        Oh crap! I mean; for gross (blatant) racist words and speech.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 5, 2013 at 1:22 pm #

          Ha! The Truth has its Rights after all and speaks out through your lies. A Freudian slip. Don’t be embarrassed for speaking the truth inadvertently.

          Look, you are confused. Why do you want to mash everyone together? Obviously healthy people have racial and national pride – and are going to conflict when put together. How many times have you chastised American Blacks for their racism? Why don’t you go to Detroit and do that on a Saturday Night? Eh, Clown?

          If an Idealism doesn’t correspond to human nature, should we try and change human nature or temper the Idealism? Liberalism foolishly says change human nature. Just because you are in a vast throng of other fools doesn’t make the idea anymore ludicrous.

          Great cartoon and article: the Fiver Pillars of Liberalism.

          counter-currents.com/2013/10/the-counter-currents-2013-summer-fundraiser-7/#more-42715

          • Arn Varnold October 6, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

            Your over inflated ego and impotent attempts at bullying and name calling, show you for the hyperbolic, intellectual dwarf, you are; prancing around in a harlequin’s suit.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 5, 2013 at 2:01 pm #

        Yes racism exists everywhere. Remember the brutal way Koreans treated the children left behind by the G.I’s. And talk to any Asian American about the racism perpetrated against them by Blacks.

        Two have been arrested in the Black Biker gang attack against an Asian family. The Asian guy did use his car to defend himself – one of the Blacks is paralyzed for life. Look at the comments on CNN(!) – the People are awakening to the existential threat these people represent.

        cnn.com/2013/10/05/us/bikers-attack-video/index.html

  91. progress4what October 4, 2013 at 9:19 pm #

    One more thing – big huge profits are accruing to news media companies from this govt. slowdown – they may be the only group(s) in the US to achieve a permanent benefit from all this foolishness.

    • BleatToTheBeat October 4, 2013 at 9:40 pm #

      Now, wait a minute. I don’t want to accuse you of contradicting yourself, but don’t you think that those “Bad Puerto Ricans” could at least wrangle some kind of ….a….”tribute” for their rep?

      Or maybe I’m just Kung-Fused again.

      Sigh….

      It’s hard to keep coming up with the necessary field intelligence that it takes to Save The World.

      Sincerely,

      Chuck Barris

    • BleatToTheBeat October 4, 2013 at 9:52 pm #

      One More Thing…

      Happy Birthday To Me
      Got Stung By A Bee
      I Dodged A Tornadooooooooo….

      And I’m Sodium-Free

      CODA:

      How Many Mooooooooore…..

  92. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 10:06 pm #

    I’ve spent many years working in such an office environment.

    You Don’t Want to Work There
    Posted on Oct 4, 2013

    mark sebastian (CC BY-SA 2.0)
    “With another jobless recovery at hand,” warns health reporter Martha Rosenberg, “it is tempting to accept any position offered to you. But there are 12 kinds of companies you don’t want to work for. Here are the warning signs.”

    Beware first of companies that call their employees “associates” or “team members,” Rosenberg writes. “This is a cheap way of making them feel values without paying them.” Relatedly, look for moral campaigns within the workplace. Slogans like “We’re The Best” and “Reach for the Stars” belie more sleazy efforts to pump employees up without paying them.

    If you work in a physical workplace, “Be suspicious of offices that are a sea of particle board cubicles with a few ostentatious glass offices. The only time you’ll see the inside of a glass office under Floorplan Feudalism is when they tell you your job was seasonal and they don’t need you anymore.”

    Next, look out for companies whose employee parking lots are full at 6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. “The cars aren’t there because people love the cafeteria food.”

  93. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

    The Chosen People are Korean, right?

    Is it “Chosen”, or “Chosin”? Thanks.

  94. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 10:15 pm #

    I once worked in a “Floorplan Feudalism” office environment, but rather than the Boss having an “ostentatious glass office”, he had a huge office with a huge desk and a huge leather reclining chair. When you went into his office, you’d have to pull up a hard uncomfortable folding chair in front of his desk. His office was always very dark and poorly lit. The Boss would grill you from behind his desk with a bright desk lamp illuminating the top of the desk. Everything else in the office was dark. It was a bit like the scene in the move “Papillon” when Papillon asks the head of the leper colony for a boat.

  95. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 10:55 pm #

    Moses shouted at the apostate Israelites: “If you won’t live by the Law, then you’ll die by the Law!”

    Then Moses hurled the stone tablets at the Golden Calf, which exploded in a blaze of fire, and the earth opened and consumed Dathan and all the sinners.

    Moses kicked their asses!

  96. Pucker October 4, 2013 at 11:49 pm #

    This question is for the Aussie readers: If someone got Australian citizenship and didn’t want to work, what would be the best way to milk the system in Australia? Thanks.

    Many years ago, I read a story on the Australian Broadcast Corporation website about a bloke in the Outback who broke his leg and survived for 2 weeks until help arrived by dragging himself to a refrigeration loaded with Foster’s beer. He survived by drinking beer for 2 weeks.

  97. Deblonay October 5, 2013 at 4:02 am #

    I reply to Pucker’s question re the Dole(Jobstart) allowance in Australia ,anyoine wanting to apply must be interviewed by the organisati
    on that operates for ALL Social Security matters called”Centrelink”

    A person wanting to get the dole would be interviewed and required to undertake job/applications/interview s/but would receive the payment after all that was done
    If they decline to take jobs offered after a time they might lose the benefits…which can also include rent aid and some other things as well

    They are of course like all Australians covered for the medical provisions of the national health laws

    • Pucker October 5, 2013 at 4:11 am #

      Deblonay: Thank you for the reply.

      Are all of the benefits in Australia “means tested”? In other words, would Centrelink look at my assets? If so, what is the asset threshold to qualify?

      Would it be a problem if I moved to a remote beach community in Western Australia to become a “Dosser”? Thanks.

  98. rube-i-con October 5, 2013 at 7:42 pm #

    … vast throng…

    great word combine-ation, thanx for the mental pleasure, i think it’s a latinate würd co-fluxed with a germanic würd?

    peace peaceniks

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 4:11 am #

      Yea, even unto the Wyrd of the World.

  99. Being There October 6, 2013 at 8:27 am #

    End of unipolar economic superpower

    Well let’s just say, it’s complicated…

    The devolution of the US is underway and in what better way than some getting Obama stuck in the briar patch and knee-deep in the tar baby and going down….The Republicans are doing the same thing they did with Clinton, getting him all tied up with the impeachment proceedings while other things got missed and here we go again.

    ….So what did we miss?

    The TPP Trans Pacific Pact, that Obama is fast-tracking this very month is being considered in Indonesia this week, but Obama is not in Asia right now pushing the US agenda. This might be a lucky break for us as the bill was there for the US transnationals, but a huge detriment to we the people.

    In Indonesia as we speak, O was supposed to kick this baby off, but now he’s stuck in Washington. Still as much as I hate the bill and want it fought, you can see that there is now a vacuum and someone always fills it.

    China says “We don’t do shutdowns”. From Pepe Escobar on Asia Times online:

    [That leaves Chinese President Xi Jinping to bask, unrivaled, in center stage glow. As if any extra Stateside “help” was needed, and as if Xi was not already on a roll.

    On Thursday, Xi became the first foreign leader ever to address the Indonesian parliament in Jakarta. He stressed that Beijing wanted by all means to boost trade with ASEAN to a whopping US$1 trillion by 2020 – and establish a regional infrastructure bank.

    His message, in a nutshell: China and “certain Southeast Asian countries” must solve their wrangling over territorial sovereignty and maritime rights “peacefully” – as in we will discuss that messy South China Sea situation (he made no direct reference to it in his speech) but don’t let that interfere with our doing serious business in trade and investment. Who is ASEAN to say no?

    And then, after upstaging Obama in Indonesia (hefty tomes could be penned about that), and signing the requisite $30 billion-plus deals (mostly in mining), Xi was off to Malaysia.]

    [What is certain is that the Obama no-show only reinforces the predominant perception that current US foreign policy is an absolute mess. And that while the US does shutdowns, China does business.]

    BUT–The military did it’s thang and went after the terrorists in Africa and got their man from the Clinton era.

    • ozone October 6, 2013 at 10:36 am #

      “BUT–The military did it’s thang and went after the terrorists in Africa and got their man from the Clinton era.”

      Yessir, BT, that’s now the specialty of US “policy”. Whackings, kidnappings, subjugations and other military adventuring.
      We’ve become the world’s most dangerous pirates! Heckuva job, O ye of little vision.

      And, as you point out, China is busily buying up the entirety of the productive world with ‘good faith’ hills of gold and shiny promises [as well as delivery] of progress. No pointing of ballistic missiles or breaking and entering with weapons at the ready necessary. How quaint, simple bribery and promises… but then again, their MIC is not quite as predominant in the Chinese pantheon of sacred economic maws that must be fed as the american’s obsessive nurture of deadly weaponry and its’ flagrant and cavalier use. Any reason the industry of death and threat-of-death has insinuated its’ poison into the job and tax structure of every state in the [former] union? Geeze, I can’t think of any, can you? Combining rapacious, extractive capitalism with good ol’ hand-in-glove fascism produces a society of arch hypocrites, liars and casual slayers. Take John Kerry — please.

      …And can we PLEASE not have any more expositions of comparative morality of the “oh yeah, but look what them guys done” type? That kind of distortion of and distraction from matters at hand is worse than unhelpful, it’s stultifying and paralyzing to imagining how we might face the predicaments JHK so vividly delineates here.

      (So now, be assured, that’s what we’re gonna get…)

      Thanks, BT. It will now be very interesting to see how the american machine can get its’ snout in the TPP trough by dint of backroom maneuverings, blackmail and skullduggery, as the true nature of this country’s agenda is revealed, redacted file by redacted file. (I really can’t see what this government can “bring to the table” other than undeliverable promises, betrayal, poison pills and a concealed blade.)

      • Being There October 6, 2013 at 12:31 pm #

        Yeah O

        And the taxpayers are on the hook for everything. Our captains of industry have whisked their profits away from the IRS playing every trick of the trade to avoid taxes. (Shadow banking has $33 trillion globally –yup a real trickle down scenerio–not)

        Max Keiser’s interview with Michael Hudson is a good one. Craig Paul Roberts also has a great post: the real crisis is not the govt. shotdown—hint, it’s off-shoring of American jobs!

        Of course we want no control of weapons internationally it’s our greatest export. That’s all we do now.

        • ozone October 6, 2013 at 1:04 pm #

          BT,
          Apologies in advance for straying so far afield, but speaking of weapons (these particulars, flung from a distance), this item comes from the Lebanese, Who-Knew? desk of the Dept. of Trustworthiness:

          almanar.com.lb/english/adetails.php?eid=110043&cid=31&fromval=1

          War on Syria confounded by [relatively] cheap tech; face saved by pronouncements of successful tests during Israeli-US joint naval exercises. (I hadn’t heard even a muffled peep of this allegation before tripping over this small article.)

          Could it be tantalizingly real? “…The Dept. will neither confirm or deny (etc.)…”

        • ozone October 6, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

          And thanks for the suggestions.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 1:33 pm #

          We warned them but they wouldn’t listen. They sold themselves into slavery for some moldy cheese and a crust of bread.

          lastresistance.com/3327/stupid-americans-shocked-obamacare-premium-increases/

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 1:36 pm #

      Democracy outlawed in the land of its birth. No protest by the “World Community”. Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable. Ander Breivik was right: it’s too late for Democratic change in Europe.

      theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/09/the-assault-on-golden-dawn-is-an-assault-on-all-european-peoples/

  100. Deblonay October 6, 2013 at 1:34 pm #

    Reply to Pucker re Australian benefits Centrelink etc

    _______________________
    Here Centrelink doesn’t take one’s home into account when Means tests are done that is exempt
    One can have quote substantial investments and the income is assesed
    I know a friend who has an income from a substantial private pension of about… $85..OOO a year(and owns a large home)
    enefits as all do
    That substantial pensions debars him from getting any govt pensions
    but he all the medical benefits etc

    My wife and I have a mix of Govt and private pension entitlements and have an income of about $$55.OOO.PA….of which about $20.OOO is a govt pension …we also have all medical benefits…and free medications after spending $300 a year on medicines,etc
    We receive other aged peoples benefits…a deduction in power/gas/water bills and reduced fares on public transport(and two free return rail trips each year inside the state we live in..and for the elderly all public transport is free on weekends
    We pay no tax of course
    If you lived in West Aust however remote the area…your income would be assesed after an income survey by Centrelink
    The remote aras have a fairly high cost of living however due to costs of transport of food etc. Gas?petrol for car is costly there

    You would have to have Australian citizenship anyway …you may have some residence permits or visa but that doesn’t count

    Citizenship/immigraton is only possible after application and is not easily gained these days There no special WELCOME mat out for AMERICANS
    One can’t just turn up and enter..other than as a tourist

    US citizens need a visa and it has a time limit..as do ours when we visit the US
    One might get a long term visa if one has special work skills and a job lined up…but otherwise it would be given little chance of acceptance

    Unemployment here is quite low around %5 , and there are many jobs in mining in remote areas…but life can be hard there and in many cases very hot in summer…though the mining jobs are well paid at all levels…the Chinese …our main customers and our new best friends…. pay very well for our minerals which are the mainstay of our booming economy. and ..for foodstuffs as well of which we..like the USA..are major producers..wheat/.barley/dairy foods/fruit./meat…
    and much great wines for which the Chinese are getting quite a taste

    The USA is not a major customer for any of this stuff as you will quess…and the fall in the USA$ has cut toursm from there.as it has made Australia more expensive for US visitors…..but on the hand the fall in the US dollar has made the US a cheap holiday for us now

    I hope this helps

    other questions ???

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 1:39 pm #

      Tell him about the mass immigration of Chinese and Muslims, the plan to destroy Australia as a White Western Nation.

      Some things are more important than prosperity which comes and goes. Little things like Identity and Existence.

  101. volodya October 6, 2013 at 3:16 pm #

    Pucker, you’re right. I read the same thing, that Chinese leadership is worried. As they ought to be. Much more realistic than the gang of buffoons in Washington.

    China has got its own societal psychoses as evidenced by the decade long cultural revolution and before that the great leap forward. Tens of millions died and for what?

    This is how it is and how it’s been: the US elite and their lackeys take away the jobs of tens of millions of Americans, relentlessly grind down their prospects, call unpaid labor of “interns” the “new normal”, insult the intelligence of people by re-writing history and portraying the good times of the 1940s-1970s as fiction, call the offshoring of millions of jobs a canard.

    If this is a business model it is a business model cooked up by idiots and one doomed to go down in flames. I think it was Niall Ferguson that said that history proceeds in spasms. Others use the term “black swans”. Look for spasms and black swans a-plenty.

    The justifiers for this state of affairs try to give it all an air of the inevitable. They make the case that it was inevitable that businesses would source production to the lowest cost foreign locale, this locale being America’s chief adversary in the world, an adversary with no tradition of civil rights and due process and protection for intellectual property. Plus they say that it was inevitable that critical corporate functions would be relocated to impoverished places right next door to nuclear armed countries-in-name-only, full to the brim with terrorists and festering with tribal and class resentments.

    So they peddle this fairy tale of inevitability. And not only that but the even bigger lie about the US workforce moving to higher value work. But in fact none of it was unavoidable.

    At worst it was mass idiocy. The best face you can put on it is to call it mass lunacy. Just as China is periodically possessed by psychoses unique to its society, so is the US.

    • Being There October 6, 2013 at 4:31 pm #

      I just call it Milton Friedman neoliberalism. The Chicago school of business.

      We went into economic loss over Viet Nam a big lie to begin with.

      Then Milton Friedman peddled his ideas to Nixon and Co. He engineered the economics of Pinochet through the Nixon administration and then told Nixon to get off the gold standard.

      That’s when the idea of a national economy was switched into globalism and the rest is a nightmare from which we would like to awaken.

      They refuse to back down from this criminal ideology as they are making way too much money and never experience the downside.

      We’re taking the brunt for every misdeed they make and they say they’re doing god’s work.

      That god of theirs is a real sadist.

  102. ozone October 6, 2013 at 3:50 pm #

    Hey, I’ve got a great idea. Let’s let corporate interests place people with really bad ideas in positions of political power!
    Oh. You say it’s the default position now?
    Sorry, this article was the first I’d heard of it. (Been living in a cave without access to newsy things for the last 30 years.)

    rollingstone.com/politics/news/looting-the-pension-funds-20130926

    The looting of the last real store of public “wealth” in america. (Besides na’chul resources, that is.)

    Then what? Who will be left to buy all these wonderful widgets and gadgets, commonly known as consumer goods? (I begin to understand why cashmere baby clothes are now being advertised for those who have more money than sense. It’s a waste of talent and dollars to go after the former middle class; not too much left to wheedle, wrangle, con or squeeze there.)

    • Being There October 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm #

      Can’t wait to see their dry cleaning bills.

      • ozone October 6, 2013 at 4:54 pm #

        Ha!
        “Those people” don’t DO dry cleaning; it’s another thing you have to take the trouble to tell the help to do (and they’ll just screw it up anyway).
        Never fear; into the garbage with baby’s soiled garment and shop for new and cuter, generating fun, satisfaction and commercial commotion!

        (You wouldn’t believe all the brand new, tags-still-on clothes that went into the hopper of the garbage truck I’ve seen. The waste by the rich borders on the criminal at times.)

  103. ozone October 6, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

    Here’s some advice I’ll share as well:
    Don’t presume to tell me what “I need” and I’ll do the same concerning you.
    M’kay? Good then; you’re welcome.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 7:02 pm #

      Why so touchy? Was there something in the article that bothered you? Why don’t we discuss it?

  104. rube-i-con October 6, 2013 at 6:29 pm #

    And not only that but the even bigger lie about the US workforce moving to higher value work.

    The industrial age with mass employment is long dead. Everyone needs to find a niché and milk it. It is good.

    Problem is, the proletariats want the good old Soviet-style mass employment days. They’re rusting in the field near the dried out well.

    We salute you as we leave you behind.

    peace peaceniks

    • Being There October 6, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

      R.

      Very sad that you describe mass employment as “Soviet” style.

      Mass employment in the US was during the height of the Cold War. That’s when we needed to prove that the US was the better option over communism.

      I don’t think Craig Paul Roberts who was Reagan’s assist. treasury sec’y and founder of supply side economics is wrong when he insists that sending our jobs overseas was our biggest downfall and a destruction of the tax base and ability to have a military. That’s what economic determinism is about. Without a mass of people able to buy this economy flat-lines.

      You may believe you’re doing well, but this thing will go to higher skilled people who work for a living and because the stock market is replete with insider trading and manipulations, if you’re not in with the in-crowd you might lose your shirt there too.

      You too will be left behind, my friend. Trust me, you’re not so great unless you’re Jamie Dimon posting on this blog.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

        Rockefeller said that resources must be “decoupled” from the nations in which they lie. This will be essentially the end of Nations in terms of real governing and the protecting of rights. As a Marxist Socialist, this is your promised land. But like so many, you don’t like what you wanted when you get it. Socialism was Always a conspiracy of the Rich to destroy nations and their middle classes.

        • Being There October 6, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

          I never understand what you’re talking about when you address me as a socialist.

          Communism is no more natural to human nature than inverted communism of the Milton Friedman flavor.

          You know I’m not a socialist, but you need the fight, I guess. ‘m not a substitute for Wage, who I met last week with her husband. Strangely we didn’t talk about politics all that much.

          I’m the one who posted the Rockefeller quote on this blog 3 years ago and you keep throwing it up Ad nauseam. (I do hope you are amused)

          Back to intense work tomorrow and off the blog for tonight.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2013 at 12:07 am #

            I know no such thing. The Lady protesteth too much methinks.

  105. rube-i-con October 6, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

    You too will be left behind, my friend.

    I will never be left behind. I have switched careers 3 times, along with countries, because I go where there is a need. I am one of those higher skilled people “this thing will go to” because I work very hard at it, not because of birth.

    The mass employment of the US during the Cold War was really all about misalignment of resources to meet a mostly phantom foe.

    The single hard truth most all Americans can’t face is that they’re not really worth much in terms of economic demand. Thus, you’d expect them to do something to invert the situation. Like learn a trade that’s in real demand. Instead, they whine about jobs going offshore.

    Fuck, I’ve been outsourced too, and it wasn’t a walk in the park, but I switched careers and am doing fine, haven’t worked as an employee in over 3 years and I don’t think I ever will again.

    Assembly line factory work, Cold War defense jobs, heavy industry….jeez already, how dumb do you have to be to bet your chits on those dinosaurs? Sure there are some jobs there still, but nothing to bet your future on.

    Learning a trade has never been a better investment, unless you can get a degree in engineering or another of the hard sciences. Which will most likely keep you in good stead financially. Go to the Middle East and work tax free a couple of years, they’re fairly much shyteholes but save your money. My cousin from Iceland is pulling in 10k a month tax free folks. Sux there, but the money’s great.

    I can work til I’m 100 in my field, and probably will. But, by then I will have likely learned another skill that’s in demand. What’s the big secret about this?

    The thing is, most Americans are just average dummies. Get agile, forget your age and just deux it.

    We salute you as we leave you behind.

    peace peaceniks

    • Arn Varnold October 6, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

      Very interesting post and reflects my journey as well.
      I’ve had 4 different careers; being versatile ensures success.
      I’m retired and pursuing my 5th career, which I can engage until death.
      Cheers

    • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2013 at 12:02 am #

      People shouldn’t have to be or do all that. That’s what Nations are for: protect our rights so we don’t have to become global campesinos or compete against them. Congratulations on your abilities, but they are of no moment here. The Laws must be based on the average dummy or working stiff.

      There are different ways to see every issue. Your advice may be good but questions of policy must be based on normal people who want to stay home and earn a living in their own town, state, and country. You are clearly above average so have some compassion on those who are less or just different.

  106. Deblonay October 7, 2013 at 12:37 am #

    Pucker re Australia….
    ____________

    On last point re Centrelink

    If one receives benefits and other incomes one must give Centrelink info on this and also the name/number of any bank accounts of any kind that you hold

    They have power under the law to check on this with your bank…any additional income you were to receive and placed into your accounts would be know to Centrelink with the aid of your bank

    Many tradesmen and small business will attempt to evade the tax laws by asking for payment i cash..and no doc given or required in the deal

    So I may call in a plumber…he may give me a discount on the job IF I pay him in cash
    This is ill;egal but widespread…both sides do OK from the deal

    Here we have a single Goods and Services Tax which goes to the States but is colected Federally

    It is 10% on all good and services…so it goes on the bill at the Supermarket Check-out or my bill from the plumber or repairman or on my electricity bill or my thetre ticket. or on a restaurant bill ….whatever

    Only fresh food is tax exempt..fruit ,meat,fish.vegies etc….(but not processed food in any form)…so fresh fish is tax exempt …but a in of sardines in not

    The States receives this money but levy no other taxes…nor do local givernment bodies
    Only the Feds levy income taxeson personal earnings etc…and on companies and investments

  107. rube-i-con October 7, 2013 at 12:41 pm #

    I’m retired and pursuing my 5th career, which I can engage until death.

    Everyone needs to follow this model, viz. being adaptable. Why wouldn’t one want to be that way? Anything else is stagnation, most likely.

    peace peaceniks

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