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Timing Is (Not) Everything

by James Howard Kunstler

“Federal Reserve officials are closer to winding down their controversial $85 billion-a-month bond-purchase program, possibly as early as December, in the wake of Friday’s encouraging jobs report.”

      That from the much-deservedly maligned John Hilsenrath, widely regarded to be the Federal Reserve’s ventrioloquist dummy over at the Wall Street Journal, as in, from God’s mouth to the jittery multitudes. Of course the jobs number was just another highly seasoned and over-leavened cupcake from the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s magic hedonic oven, so you can be sure that the predicate of that statement is… how to put it delicately…  the latest arrant lie with hypothetical icing on top.

     Everybody knows that the Federal Reserve’s money-pumping operations have become a replacement for what used to be an economy. Therefore, no more money pumping = no more so-called economy. It’s that simple. But it doesn’t mean that the Federal Reserve won’t make a gesture and I wouldn’t be surprised if they try it during the season that Santa Claus hovers over the national consciousness — or what little of that remains when you subtract the methedrine, the Kanye downloads, the fear of an $11,000 bill for an emergency room visit requiring three stitches, and all the other epic distractions of our time.

     The next meeting of the Fed’s Open Market Committee (FOMC), where such things as taper-or-not are considered, is Dec. 17. The Fed has to make some kind of gesture to retain any credibility, so I suspect they’ll go for a symbolic shaving of five or ten billion a month off the current official bond-buying operation number of $85 billion a month (or $1.2 trillion a year). If they don’t do it, no one will ever believe them again. I call it the “head-fake” taper, because it is essentially a false move.

       The catch is that the Fed has more than one back door for vacuuming up all sorts of other miscellaneous financial trash paper securitized by promises already broken, moldy sheet-rock housing, college loans defaulted on, car payments that stopped arriving eighteen months ago, credit cards maxed to oblivion, sovereign foreign economies visibly whirling down the drain, and untold casino bet derivative hedges. Loose talk has it that the Fed is buying up way more dodgy debt than the official number of $85 billion a month. And why not? They bailed out way more than the $700 billion official TARP figure back in 2009 — everything from insolvent European banks to Floridian motels on the REO junk-pile — so nobody should take any particular taper number seriously. They’ll just backfill as necessary.

     But even in a world of seemingly no consequence, things happen. One pretty sure thing is rising interest rates, especially when, at the same time as a head-fake taper, foreigners send a torrent of US Treasury paper back to the redemption window. This paper is what other nations, especially in Asia, have been trading to hose up hard assets, including gold and real estate, around the world, and the traders of last resort — the chumps who took US T bonds for boatloads of copper ore or cocoa pods — now have nowhere else to go. China alone announced very loudly last month that US Treasury debt paper was giving them a migraine and they were done buying anymore of it. Japan is in a financial psychotic delirium scarfing up its own debt paper to infinity. Who’s left out there?  Burkina Faso and the Kyrgystan Cobblers’ Union Pension Fund? The interest rate on the US 10-year bond is close to bumping up on the ominous 3.0 percent level again. Apart from the effect on car and house loans, readers have pointed out to dim-little-me that the real action will be around the interest rate swaps. Last time this happened, in late summer, the too-big-to-fail banks wobbled from their losses on these bets, providing a glimpse into the aperture of a black hole compressive deflation where cascading chains of unmet promises blow financial systems past the event horizon of universal default and paralysis where money stops moving anywhere and people must seriously reevaluate what money actually is.

      I think we’ll see them try the head-fake taper. They must. It will be backstopped by and saturated in statistical lying, and everyone will have trouble parsing the probable effect because the chronic dishonesty loose in this land will have deformed and impaired all metrics of true value. At the heart of whatever remains of this economy is fire, and the officers of the Federal Reserve are playing with it. Pretty soon, we’ll get the un-taper, the final surrender to the crack-up boom that awaits before the western world has to go medieval.

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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.

311 Responses to “Timing Is (Not) Everything” Subscribe

  1. BackRowHeckler December 13, 2013 at 4:19 pm #

    If anybody needs the services of a Hearing Impaired translator, there is one right now in SA looking for work, if you can find him.

    Does any of you find it remarkable, that the US President, probably the most closely guarded person in the world, is placed in the presence of an accused murderer and admitted Schizophrenic? That this guy is standing right next to Obama for that whole Bullshit Speech?


    • Carl Grimes December 13, 2013 at 6:18 pm #

      Hey this is Mandela’s South Africa, I’m surprised the building didn’t cave in. He generally reminded me more of Idi Amin than Ben Franklin. He was a ‘minority’ group member, so the media couldn’t cover him properly, how you can be eighty five to ninety percent of the population and be a precious minority group member is a mystery to me.

  2. BackRowHeckler December 13, 2013 at 4:20 pm #

    Do any of you ,,,

  3. rube-i-con December 13, 2013 at 5:41 pm #

    I actually sincerely wish efforts like this to succeed, would not minding working on one myself; but would like the facts of these matters reported honestly and not spun like a Midwestern tornado

    i’m going with ibm’s calculations. they can successfully produce mainframe computers, which are gargantuanly complex.

    Any ‘false claims’ in a system like this will easily be outed under scrutiny by participating engineers.

    i don’t see any criticism of this on the net. if it’s a rube, why is there none?

    peace peaceniks

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 13, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

      even the old mainframes still have errors popping up. complexity at some point overwhelms all systems… i’m sure there’s a proof of that somewhere. (theory of incompleteness? no system contains all possible true statements, and, when sufficiently large, no system is w/o falsity.)

      when i was still working, i was on a team for a medium size financial outfit making legacy cobol code y2k compliant. we found zillions of math errors in it, but it was all sacrosanct, had been sec certified for decades. a child could’ve done better arithmetic. still, $60b assets rested firmly upon its accuracy. i believe the hardware was good old ibm iron.

      • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 12:10 am #

        I suppose if they can produce mainframe computers they must be good at baking bread too.

    • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 12:20 am #

      Participating engineers might have a vested interest; better bring in a third party.

      That fifty percent was a false claim. The heat was waste heat that is to be allegedly re-purposed but only vague claims were made as to how it would be used and the ’50%’ recovery is pulled out of thin air. That article had the scientific rigour of a marketing brochure but that’s good enough for you. Not good enough for me. I deal with facts.

      And who would bother criticising an article like this. The article has an obscure audience and brings nothing really new to the table. Systems like this have been under development for years. I prefer the Stirling Engine with parabolic mirror version myself.

  4. orionoir@gmail.com December 13, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

    jhk’s prose sometimes takes my breath away like copd; t’is a thing of beauty, what he does with words. still, lately i’ve been entertaining the idea that the verbally fluent are often vulnerable to their own intoxicating aurae, eg, their facility with language takes them further from accuracy, not closer, in the same way that a precisely calibrated dashboard often leads a driver astray. that recent celebrity who died in a porsche, for example: was it his competence and not his incompetence which connected him to the tree?

    debt is alarming when you’re in it and can’t pay it back: human beings are entitled to freak on such occasions. but giant banks and sovereign nations are not people: they have no emotions. all these $trillions which drive jhk to such apoplexy are merely pieces on a chessboard. nations rise, nations fall, real people end up starving or dying of thirst, but there is no drama in the numbers. remember, we have no creditors on mars: the debt of world is a zero sum.

    as for financial logic, econ 101 tells us that inflation favors the debtor, not the creditor. if anybody has reason to stay awake at night, it’s the chinese, who would be none too happy to be paid back in debased greenbacks. bernanke’s printing press may be a tool of the devil, but it’s on the side of debtors like us, and homeowners like us, too, because the quickest way to revive real estate is to make the mortgage debt hangover go away. as for the labor market from hell, who among us is so secure as not to want a little more stimulus?

    • BackRowHeckler December 13, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

      Happy to see you’re still with us, Orionoir.

    • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 12:46 am #

      Those verbally fluent do not take themselves seriously enough to become vulnerable to their own intoxicating aurae. There may be some divergence from accuracy at a particular moment true but the search for accuracy never stops with the truly creative. The creative are far more likely to find accuracy than anyone else. The creative have more capacity to doubt and examine. Creativity is always trying to find new ways of looking at things. At any particular point in the never ending journey of expression divergence can be misunderstood and seen as the whole when actually divergence is but a snapshot in a dynamic saga of motion.

      • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 9:39 am #

        [At any particular point in the never ending journey of expression divergence can be misunderstood and seen as the whole when actually divergence is but a snapshot in a dynamic saga of motion.]

        k-dog i appreciate your thinking and i think i follow it pretty well. i suppose it’s a very old argument, whether human intelligence is a force for good or not. thomas jefferson put his stamp on the optimistic view, eg, that gradually wisdom accumulates, but surely there have been equally smart pessimists who have found the opposite, eg, that good is perishable and evil everlasting.

        do you recall “seb” which was the nick for a guy name bllinghurst? he annoyed people here a long time ago. years ago people thought i might be his sock puppet, which tickles me even now.

        seb was (and hopefully still is) much into better living through chemistry. perhaps it ate up his brain in some literal sense. still, the man has a way with words. his intelligible prose is like bach to my ears.

        unquestionably, he’s gone astray. i cite him as a cautionary tale for anyone, including our host, who scales the heights of written language.

        same thing said differently:


        • K-Dog December 15, 2013 at 4:24 pm #

          Wisdom accumulates but it also evaporates if not stored in the proper containers. Pessimists often view the world with more acuity than the optimist but then the pessimist becomes mired in despair.

          ” Thomas Jefferson put his stamp on the optimistic view, eg, that gradually wisdom accumulates, but surely there have been equally smart pessimists who have found the opposite, eg, that good is perishable and evil everlasting”.

          Must it be a binary situation, one way or the other? The rock of Sisyphus must be pushed up the mountain and it will roll down again yet we must whistle while we work or risk going mad. The truth is in the middle. Let the work be joyous and choose the gently sloping path.

    • Arn Varnold December 14, 2013 at 6:48 am #

      @ orionoir
      jhk’s prose sometimes takes my breath away like copd; t’is a thing of beauty, what he does with words. still, lately i’ve been entertaining the idea that the verbally fluent are often vulnerable to their own intoxicating aurae, eg, their facility with language takes them further from accuracy, not closer, in the same way that a precisely calibrated dashboard often leads a driver astray. that recent celebrity who died in a porsche, for example: was it his competence and not his incompetence which connected him to the tree?
      Well, holy shit! A thinking individual. A critically thinking individual, no less.
      I have no idea who you are, but you are a breath of fresh air in this stifling atmosphere of sycophants.
      Thank you for a critical eye’s view of JHK’s posts/threads.
      JHK does make some great points, but gets lost (often) in his word-smithing and hyperbole, IMO.

    • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

      Regarding the tree. I vote it was competence.

  5. Q. Shtik December 13, 2013 at 8:43 pm #

    Title of article:

    Execution of Kim Jong Un’s uncle recalls grandfather’s lethal era

    Last sentence of article:

    This brutal, but perfectly Machiavellian move clearly shows he is prepared to continue in the footsteps of the Kim dynasty.

    …proving once again the perpetual relevance of The Prince by Machiavelli.

  6. Q. Shtik December 13, 2013 at 9:11 pm #


    I always enjoy it when you pop back in here to give us the benefit of your wisdom, ruminations and unique writing style.

    There are others who I wish would come back as well…this place needs spicing up:

    Bustin J
    Hancock (but only if he limits his comments to one screen and doesn’t use the words ‘right wing authoritarian’ more than 5 times in a single post)
    Mistified (of fucktard fame)
    …and many others

  7. Q. Shtik December 13, 2013 at 9:29 pm #


    Buck’s A Stud

  8. ajmuste December 13, 2013 at 11:33 pm #








    Dr. Doom

  9. Pucker December 14, 2013 at 12:08 am #

    Important post-Collapse safety tip:

    For those of you who are thinking of fleeing to Australia post-Collapse, remember that when in an area inhabited by salt water crocs, whatever you do, don’t wander near near to edge of a river (particularly a deep river) to have a smoke, watch the scenery, or take a leak.


  10. Pucker December 14, 2013 at 12:09 am #

    “I think (with my penis) therefore I am.”


    • Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

      The Lust of the Goat is the Glory of God.

    • BackRowHeckler December 14, 2013 at 5:53 pm #

      You mean thinking with your little head, not your big head.

      Its what gets a lot of dudes in trouble.

      • Pucker December 14, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

        Je pense avec mon penis, je suis….


      • Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 7:56 pm #

        You might try thinking with your little head – it can’t do worse than your big one is doing. I mean seriously guy, YOU supported Kdog? His viewpoints are very far from your own. Very far to the Left. Amazing you can’t see that or didn’t care.

  11. Karah December 14, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    It would be a great thing to have the comments section truncated at about 50 posts eliminating redundancy and forcing attention on the topic at hand. A limit on the number of words per post would encourage focus as well. Currently, we do not know the word limit until after submit the post and an addendum message says “we are awaiting approval”. Links should also be limited to in text footnotes so they don’t interrupt the flow and distract from this webpage. The comments section is for intellectual discussion, not to promote another blog; therefore, we shouldn’t have to visit someone’s blog in order to get their reaction.

    • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

      Limiting to a fixed number won’t work because then gov-mint troll with the multiple alias and 24 hour staffing will overpower any individuals who don’t advocate the approved status-quo. Read carefully this weeks stream of consciousness (or stream of bull whichever you prefer) and rube-i-con has admitted to commenting under at least two different characters this week. rube-i-con is not the only individual commenting under two separate avatars. I commend your desire to figure out how comments could be modified to encourage intellectual discussion and eliminate banal distraction but it is not as easy as you think. There are those here with the specific intent of preventing intellectual discussion and will pervert any means put in place to encourage intellectual discussion and use that means to prevent it.

      As far as links go I generally make mine using anchor tags so they are essentially footnotes and when I deviate from that it is for good reason and appropriate. I’ve memorised how they are made and find it to be no great effort to go the extra mile.

      For now we are stuck with, caveat lector. Jim in his redesign did improve things but we even have one here now who regularly protests and wants to return to the days when one great power here would drone intellectually oriented posts with thousands of Chinese characters which when translated made nonsense and were lifted from Chinese news blogs in a random sort of way.

      • K-Dog December 14, 2013 at 1:47 pm #

        Sometime when I make anchor tags they mess up like this one did:

        extra mile

        What happened in that link was the heat from my left paw caused the integrated trackpad on the laptop I’m using to cause my cursor to jump and I wasn’t able to completely undue the damage. I wish I could turn it off as I use a mouse anyway.

    • Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 7:57 pm #

      What a horrible idea. Why not truncate yourself? You could go down to four foot and no once would care or miss it, probably not even you.

  12. progress4what December 14, 2013 at 12:01 pm #



    That female US ex-pat living in Costa Rica – Dee Jones, right?


    I do wonder if Cash might be “voloyda?” (sp) Some of the same writing styles and conclusions as Cash, at any rate. Check out the way he ended this post:

    “The US will be destroyed from within. The gangsters in the Kremlin and Beijing and Riyadh, with their own agendas and ambitions, but without sufficient power to supplant America, must be rubbing their eyes in disbelief.” …..voloyda/cash?…..

    • Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 7:58 pm #

      I just realized Cash and Bill had merged together in my mind.

  13. progress4what December 14, 2013 at 12:07 pm #

    It’s been very interesting to watch this blog and comment thread eb and flow over the, nearly, three years that I’ve been participating.

    And our host, JHK, has gone from lots of environmental and peak oil commentary until now, where almost every week’s work concentrates totally on economic problems.

    • stelmosfire December 14, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

      Howdy Prog, 11 degrees here and lookin’ at maybe a ft. of flakes. My fingers growing like a lobster claw, Doc says it’s gonna take, It won’t be pretty. I missed Q’s list of favorite posters. Boo F’in hoo, Rippedthunder

    • Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 2:27 pm #

      To clarify, though I shouldn’t have to, I don’t say all Blacks are bad merely that they are the Enemy. You were a soldier once. Didn’t you ever think this through? Perhaps you didn’t have to if you didn’t see combat. And some guys can’t soldier unless they every enemy combatant (and even citizens) as scumbags. That’s why the Police routinely abuse people: we are the Enemy now.

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 14, 2013 at 6:06 pm #

      []our host, JHK, has gone from peak oil… to concentrates\ totally on economic problems.]

      without meaning to insult the host (eg, a guest criticizing the food) i do have to agree and wish it were not so. jhk is a brilliant prose stylist; i hope someday, probably posthumously, the world will celebrate this; and he caught the peak-everything aesthetic and zeitgeist perfectly. but he’s a babe in the woods when it comes to all things financial, and i wish someone he trusts would tell him so.

      financial writing is beautiful, of course. but if you’re consistently wrong the readership forces you hang it up, that is, if you’re writing for investors. even cnbc’s cramer, a brilliant tv personality on par with sarah palin, his record re stockpicking is abysmal, and serious money knows it darn well and mocks him accordingly. jhk should fear such a fate.

      imho, jim’s triumph is _the geography of nowhere_. if you haven’t read it recently, pick it up again. words fail me when i imagine how to praise that book.

      his fiction is workmanlike and passable, but i still say if you can’t write a decent sex scene, you shouldn’t be writing fiction.

      his financial prose — this week especially — is a goddamn thing of beauty, but if you are planning to trade on his insight you’re as deranged as he.

      what was it einstein said? make things as simple as possible but not more so? don’t apply the language of beauty to the world of money.

      • Karah December 15, 2013 at 12:32 am #

        Yes…the economics bores me and is very unsexy.
        Did Kunstler lose anything in Madoff ponzi scheme?
        Does he personally know anyone who has lost significant amounts of money to Madoff?
        That would make a very interesting PODCAST…if he ever does one again.

        • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 11:17 am #

          [personally know anyone who has lost significant amounts of money to Madoff]

          a classmate of my daughter was abruptly pulled from school… they had entrusted everything, $.5m, to an uncle who had an in with the bigshots. as far as i’ve heard, they have recovered less than two bist per dollar. goodbye dreams of college, hello national guard.

          but as for the majority of the investors in fairfield county, oh boy, cry me a river, a river of crocodile tears.

  14. Janos Skorenzy December 14, 2013 at 2:16 pm #

    It was fitting that the Mandela interpreter “spoke” gibberish and is in fact a madman. It’s much like heavy early snow storms that have dogged Global Warming Conferences. Nature or Reality speaks out in its own Defense. The Voice of Heaven is not easily silenced; the Will of Heaven not easily circumvented. Man can triumph for a Day, but Heaven will enact its due revenge.

    • BackRowHeckler December 14, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

      An NPR broadcast surmised all that rain in SA was Gods tears mourning the death of Madiba.

      I remember back around ’94, when Madiba became President, a bunch of Whales approached the coast near Capetown. CNN claimed they were there to celebrate the great event.


  15. rube-i-con December 14, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

    About Germany`s solar/renewables energy production in April of this year?

    Today’s graph of the graph is a follow-up to Wednesday’s graph of the day, which highlighted the fact that Germany set a new record for solar output of 22.6GW on Monday.

    On Thursday, it did not set a new solar record, but in combination with consistent output of wind energy, renewable generation reached record capacity of 36GW, and for three hours between noon and 3pm exceeded the combined contribution of coal, gas and nuclear plants.


    We salute you as we leave you behind to your glorious past and charge ahead to our bounteous future.

    peace peaceniks

  16. Lord Blaby of Lawson December 14, 2013 at 4:06 pm #

    As was mentioned earlier, Nelson Rockefeller Mandela was aptly named Rolihlahla, or “troublemaker” in Xhosa. What was the plan that was drawn up during his cozy stay at Robthem Island? The ANC was compromised, first by the USSR and then by Great Britain. Many in the top ranks were sell-outs of one sort or another, and still are. For how long were many of them compromised is the question. Probably far longer than most would wager. Hani wasn’t cooperating and couldn’t be trusted. Like Serpico, he wouldn’t be bought, and so he had to be eliminated. What a great idea to use White patsies. Who would question it? Hardly anyone, obviously. But cui bono (so many of them have made out like bandits hence Robthem Island) goes to the ANC, and in fact, Winnie has alleged as much. Here’s a thread discussion about it. Some of the comments barely pass as literate, but the truth if there is such a thing is in there somewhere.


    • Lord Blaby of Lawson December 14, 2013 at 4:12 pm #

      A comment from that link that is coherent and evocative.

      “The soft-cock revolution” that culminated in the ’94 elections was bought and paid for. The ANC in general was ready to co-operate with the white government to bring us a black flavoured old South Africa touted as new and reformed, Hani being principled would have wanted what all genuine revolutionaries did, socialist transition and terminate all resource extraction leases on our soil, incorporate MK vets into SANDF and rebuild the legal/courts system oh and also a fast tracked land redistribution programme. All that would have caused a deadlock at the negotiating table and the ANC top brass were all too ready to hit the feeding trough. Two assasination attempts and a sustained character assasination preceded Hani’s murder so it is not hard to think that many particularly on the ANCs side knew, I can even imagine that those that knew might have had a running joke behind his back like “dead man walking” instead doubling his security and exposing the plot. Mr Renaissance would have not succeeded Nelson had Hani lived and therein lies the lie.

      It certainly explains the aftermath. Hani wanted to fast-track it, and the corrupt ANC brass wanted to feed on the Golden Calf. If so, the wealthy Whites are truly traitors to their race just as is the ANC leadership. In the end, money wins/rules the day.

      • orionoir@gmail.com December 14, 2013 at 6:31 pm #

        [“The soft-cock revolution” that culminated in ’94] ???!?

        news flash: the soft-cock revolution is over.

        so a man goes to the doctor and the doctor says, cialis. so the guy thinks, hmm, cialis, maybe i should, maybe i shouldn’t.

        he stops in town and sees alice’s restaurant, hmm, must be a new place, he thinks, i never noticed it before. he has the script in his pocket, there’s a drugstore next door, maybe he’ll fill it, maybe he won’t.

        he thinks he’s entering the restaurant but it’s actually the staircase to the apartment upstairs. so he knocks on the door, but there’s no answer. still, he can here snuffling around inside, so he knocks again and waits.

        someone opens the door a crack and says, alice doesn’t live here anymore.

        (i thought that joke up all by myself.)

      • Carl Grimes December 14, 2013 at 8:30 pm #

        I’m not completely sure who the traiter here is, it does seem clear what the cultural marxists do with any kind of power. 1 Disarm the citizens so they can’t appose the police state. 2 Shut down freedom of speech with ‘hate speech laws, then nobody can oppose them. 3 Promote abnormal sex 4 Set immigrants, foreigners and petty minority groups up as sacred cows, use them to destroy western culture.5 Make everything against the law, or make the law so comfusing, no one understands it.

        The pattern is pretty clear, it’s happening all over the western world.

  17. orionoir@gmail.com December 14, 2013 at 6:22 pm #

    oh, gosh, i only now have caught up with other people saying kind things, and as y’all know, kindness is my cocaine. i’m real pleased to see you qschtik safe and sound… i thought you were banned for life.

    hear now me getting meta re cfn: don’t inaugurate no hall of fame. we are the sum of ourselves, trolls included.

    the one poster who always blew my mind, and whose name i cannot remember, is that british chick who seemed to know inside dope re world petroleum markets. she once mentioned driving a ferrrari or some such car. in this way she nailed the three things i admire most:

    * smart

    * rich

    * female

    aka, father, son and the holy ghost. :)

  18. orionoir@gmail.com December 14, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

    {egregiously off-topic: so ban my ass.}

    i had this weird sentimental moment at starbucks this morning… i’m getting my coffee, and the clerk says there’s no charge. and i’m mystified, but she says that some guy came in and paid for 26 coffees. so i’m mixing in milk thinking, what the hell, why would anyone buy 26 coffees? and of course i realize it’s sandy hook day. which made me briefly thankful in an almost religious way, just thinking about how people are all trying their best, within reason.

    so i guess today’s a sad day, but it’s nice that it doesn’t fall on a school day. our kids each in their way are doing so well in school, and lately i’ve felt quite close to my online groups, a feeling which comes and goes, of course, but still, with the snow falling tonight, i feel glad for having so many people in my life.

  19. Pucker December 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm #

    Important post-Collapse safety tip:

    For those of you who are thinking of fleeing to Australia post-Collapse, remember that when in an area inhabited by saltwater crocs, whatever the f..ck you do, don’t wander near the edge of a river (particularly a deep river) to have a smoke, watch the scenery, or take a leak.



  20. Pucker December 14, 2013 at 8:04 pm #

    “Take my wife….Please take my wife!”

    - Rodney Dangerfield

    Be croc wise
    Crocodiles are potentially dangerous. Never take unnecessary risks in crocodile habitat. You are responsible for your own safety, so please follow these guidelines and be croc wise in croc country.

    Obey crocodile warning signs – they are there for your safety and protection.
    Never swim in water where crocodiles may live even if there is no warning sign present.
    Swimming or standing in water above knee-height near a crocodile warning sign or where estuarine crocodiles are frequently seen, is illegal in protected areas (you can still enter the water if you have a reasonable excuse, e.g. launching a boat).
    When fishing, always stand a few metres back from the water’s edge and never stand on logs or branches overhanging the water.
    Never clean fish or discard fish scraps near the water’s edge, around campsites or at boat ramps.
    Stay well back from any crocodile slide marks. Crocodiles may be close by and may approach people and boats.
    Boats and vehicles must never be brought within 10m of an estuarine crocodile in the wild – it is illegal unless part of a commercial crocodile viewing tour, or there is a reasonable excuse, e.g. where a creek is less than 10m wide.
    Never dangle your arms or legs over the side of a boat. If you fall out of a boat, get out of the water as quickly as possible.
    Never provoke, harass or interfere with crocodiles, even small ones.
    Never feed crocodiles – it is illegal and dangerous.
    Camp at least 2m above the high water mark and at least 50m from the water’s edge. Avoid places where native animals and domestic stock drink.
    Never leave food scraps, fish frames or bait at your campsite. Always check that previous campers have not left these behind.
    Never prepare food, wash dishes or pursue any other activities near the water’s edge or adjacent sloping banks.
    Be more aware of crocodiles at night and during the breeding season, September to April.


    • orionoir@gmail.com December 14, 2013 at 8:51 pm #

      [Be more aware of crocodiles]

      hippos instinctively stamp out fires. it is for this reason that they are called “the gardener’s friend.”

  21. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 12:02 pm #

    “To clarify, though I shouldn’t have to, I don’t say all Blacks are bad merely that they are the Enemy. ” ….janos….

    Janos – that statement takes you a bridge too far, perhaps over the River of Insanity and through the Woods of Hate. If Grandmother’s house is down that road – I do not want to meet her.

    And what about Herman Cain, or Thomas Sowell – you’re gonna’ make them enemies because of skin pigmentation. In a lot of ways, they have more in common with you than do many “Whites.”

    At some point, Janos, you stop being provocative and become alienating to all.

    I’d say you’re past that point, here.

    • Janos Skorenzy December 15, 2013 at 3:40 pm #

      Well Prog, many people have thought and written about this issue. It’s hardly new. Some guys can’t soldier unless they think the Enemy is completely evil, everyone of them. During WW2, GI’s were conditioned to think that way about the Germans – even after the War. But it happens every time to some degree. No of course Sowell isn’t the Enemy, Blacks are. Sowell only is to the extent he supports them. And he is in the middle – sometimes good, sometimes not. A few years ago he claimed Blacks inherited their flaws from Southern Whites. Pretty hateful and obviously untrue. The poor Whites he was slandering never owned slaves. In fact, the Plantation owners encouraged Blacks to think themselves better than the poor Whites.

      You have to do better. As it is, you are unfit to survive what may be coming. Even Sowell admits there may be a race war. So are you going to be a conscientious objector – even though you wear the uniform?

  22. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 1:08 pm #

    “I want you to know I don’t appreciate that.”
    ….ozone, paraphrased – concerning his never ignoring reality….

    I suspect you and I would get along OK in person, O3 – because there we’d have the visual and non-verbal cues to keep us off of points of severe disagreement – and on “safe” topics, like music, for example.

    Backrowheckler (aka Marlin, aka Comrade Dystopia) knows this – which is why he speaks favorably of both of us.

    But – here on the internet – I’m not sure that there’s any benefit to avoiding argument and trying to get along – on important topics.

    And the state of racial relationships in the United States certainly qualifies as an important topic.

    Consider this interactive map from National Geographic. And consider that the US is presently one of the most prosperous? and most diverse? nations on the planet. And consider what will happen as that prosperity declines. And – consider what could happen if that prosperity ended in a sudden *lights out* disaster.

    Just consider it. And, consider that it’s better to talk about things while the lights remain on, and the food trucks continue to run.


    “Since most of the dots are smaller than a pixel on a computer screen, high concentrations of different colors can combine at wider zoom levels to create a purplish hue, like in this photo of the Amtrak route that runs through Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York. So purple is an indication of diversity on a regional scale.

    Still, what looks like racial integration from a distance can change upon zooming. Scroll over Minnesota, for example, and you’ll get a nebula of purple and blue dots around Minneapolis. But zoom in and segregation becomes apparent on a neighborhood scale, as more red and green dots emerge.” ….nat geo…

    • Janos Skorenzy December 15, 2013 at 3:45 pm #

      I was going to make that point to Back Row myself. What the hell is the point of blogs if people have to behave like they do in public – which means never ending politeness and subterfuge? The internet is unreal, sure but so is the American Public Square. The internet CAN be superior to that in a way, but only if it is used. It’s like the secret ballot. That’s why we have them – so people can be honest.

      Poor Back Row voted for Kdog out of a sense of loyalty – even though he’s pretty conservative on most issues. What a sweet and utterly confused guy.

  23. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

    Yeah, orionoir, it’s very good to see you back on the thread!

    That British female with the Porsche went by the handle of “Alexandra,” or something very close to that. And I’ll agree with you, she was another good thinker and poster. She had a lot of sailing experience and I believe she was living on a boat with a guy; planning to make one or more bluewater passages.

    Another good poster was Mika. Even though he and I had severe verbal brawls, he had a viewpoint that taught me a LOT about human nature and tribalism – even as is disagreed with most of what he had to say.

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 4:37 pm #

      [British female with the Porsche went by the handle of “Alexandra,”]

      procon i’ve believe you’ve got it. except it wasn’t a porsche or a ferrari, it was something more exotic… lamborghini? she complained that the roads in london were such a mess she couldn’t drive it anywhere.

      that’s interesting, to think her off with her man, sailing lonely oceans of thought. perhaps that’s why she had such an affinity for crude, watching it all float by.

      you’re still in the farmington river valley, am i correct? i recall once you taking a conservative political stance and thinking, well, that’s not very progressive, now he can no longer be my friend. but i got over the snit quickly and have remained fond of you ever since.

  24. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

    St. Elmo/Ripped Thunder – glad to hear the finger surgery is going to be a success. Be careful with those drive belts, man!

  25. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 1:26 pm #

    “is disagreed” – should be “I disagreed”

    “eb and flow” . should be “ebb and flow”

  26. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 1:47 pm #

    Q, you’ll like this:

    ” To: The Faculty

    In light of the controversy regarding so-called grade inflation, please take a moment to review the grading guidelines rubric, reproduced below:

    ¶ The A+ grade is used only in very rare instances for the recognition of truly exceptional achievement.

    For example: A term paper receiving the A+ is virtually indistinguishable from the work of a professional, both in its choice of paper stock and its font. The student’s command of the topic is expert, or at the very least intermediate, or beginner. Nearly every single word in the paper is spelled correctly; those that are not can be reasoned out phonetically within minutes. Content from Wikipedia is integrated with precision. The paper contains few, if any, death threats.

    A few things can disqualify an otherwise worthy paper from this exceptional honor: 1) Plagiarism, unless committed with extraordinary reluctance. 2) The paper has been doused in blood or another liquid, unless dousing was requested by the instructor. 3) The paper was submitted late (with reasonable leeway — but certainly by no more than one or two years). ”


  27. Lord Blaby of Lawson December 15, 2013 at 1:48 pm #

    Important post-Collapse safety tip:

    Thanks for the tip. Perhaps we should reverse it and tip-off the crocodiles and alligators. In a post-Collapse, over-populated world with everyone scrambling for diminishing resources to survive, crocodiles and alligators will quickly become endangered. People will be gunning for them. In fact, it’d probably be wise to start a farm of either variety right now so you can get ahead of the game. What do you feed them, you ask? Initially, pre-Collapse, I suppose you can feed them chicken or something of that nature, but post-Collapse when law and order break down you can start feeding them your human captives. I’ve had alligator meat. It’s not too bad. It tastes like chicken (I know, that’s what everyone says about most mystery meats). Besides, by feeding humans to the farm-raised alligators and crocodiles, you’ll be doing your part in depopulating the planet to manageable numbers in a very sustainable and natural way. So, alligators and crocodiles be warned. Your future, after a brief banquet of human, will be tenders and boots.

    Ted Bundy was a sort of salt water crocodile if you really think about it. So too is the NSA. They make great boots, and those boots are made for walking and that’s just what they’ll do. One of these days those boots are gonna walk all over you.

    • K-Dog December 15, 2013 at 4:03 pm #


      Crocodiles have a lot of internal parasites and I’m not sure they are good eating. Do you have any factual info on this?

      Seriously, inquiring dogs want to know.

  28. K-Dog December 15, 2013 at 3:57 pm #

    “The effort was not a small one, the news agencies report. In fact, so much anti-terrorism work was being conducted in the virtual worlds that a separate “deconfliction” group was tasked with monitoring spies from the CIA, Pentagon, and FBI so that they wouldn’t interfere with — or waste time spying on — one another, according to Pro Publica.”

    From: Orc And Dagger: U.S., U.K. Reportedly Spied On Gamers Online

    I think ‘Q’s list will help out in clarifying the situation here though I see at least one on the list I suspect of being a real person.

    But I could be wrong!

    And there is no ‘Reportedly’ about it.

  29. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    “As it is, you are unfit to survive what may be coming.”

    Well, first of all, I’m probably better positioned than most on here to survive “what may be coming,” unless what’s coming is a large meteor strike on the N. Georgia mountains, that is.

    And – if what’s coming is a swirling vortex of hate that destroys US society, then I’m not sure I’d WANT to survive it.

    And you need to consider that “what may be coming” may not hew to your standards of proper societal unrest. It may just be, for example, 10 more decades of relatively peaceful decline. Coupled, of course, with massive population growth due to immigration – since immigration is unopposable because such opposition is evidence of hate filled racism. (There’s a Catch-22 in there, for anyone who wants to extract it for discussion.)

    10 more decades of decline – punctuated, of course, with JHK’s weekly missives and predicted periodic economic catastrophes.

    Yee Haw and Giddy Up!

    • progress4what December 15, 2013 at 4:27 pm #

      “And – if what’s coming is a swirling vortex of hate that destroys US society, then I’m not sure I’d WANT to survive it.*”

      *although – I’d still give survival my best shot for the sake of kin and close friends.

    • K-Dog December 15, 2013 at 4:32 pm #

      10 more decades of relatively peaceful decline. Yee Haw and Giddy Up“?

      I smell Georgia moonshine on thy breath.

      Avoid the Catch-22 by discussing overpopulation first and immigration second. Not the other way around.

  30. orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 4:42 pm #

    today i went to my local bookstore to buy The Geography of Nowhere; they did not have it but would be happy to order it for me; i was polite enough not to say, and why would i want you to do that, i’ll get it for half your price off amazon and it will be here the day after tomorrow. instead i bought Too Much Magic, which i had mostly read when it came out, standing around in the aisles, like a teenager reading porno off the rack because he’s too shy to pay for it.

    as everyone here knows, the epigraph (? is that the word for a quote before the title page?) for Too Much is mike “iron mike” tyson’s

    everyone has a plan til they get hit in the mouth.

    • K-Dog December 15, 2013 at 4:52 pm #

      But you wound up buying it anyway so reading it standing around in the isles turned out to be OK.

  31. Q. Shtik December 15, 2013 at 5:35 pm #

    “… i’ll get it for half your price off amazon and it will be here the day after tomorrow.” – Orion

    I rarely BUY a book. I’m too cheap. I get them from the local library. If they don’t have it they can usually order it in from another library in their network. It usually arrives within a week. Such is the case with the book (In Xanadu) I am currently reading. It came from a library in Nutely, NJ.

    If nobody has it I hassle my local library to acquire it.

  32. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 5:39 pm #


    No, that’s backrowheckler in the Farmington River valley – I’m on a little creek in the N. Georgia mountains. JHK ought to sell a program to this thread, eh?

    You should have called me out when I expressed that non-progressive thought. You’re a bright guy. We could have had a discussion. I could have changed your mind.

    Or – Heaven forfend – you might have changed my mind.

    Anyway – glad you’re over your snit. And it’s interesting that you most remember Alexandra’s automobile, whereas I most remember her sailing experiences. She and I had a good little discussion about possible motivations and potential radar use among the Somali Pirates. (guess that’s what they should rename the Washington Redskins?)

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 6:05 pm #

      [I could have changed your mind.]

      @pro, i like to think to think that i’m open to suggestion. as a born-again atheist (from the cancer experience… a long story) i do try to let believers say their peace. even racists and i find some amount of common ground… my odd concordance with vlad remains valuable to me.

      i’m not sure what it was, but my guess it was a north-south thing, perhaps re the civil war. lately i’ve come to see the split between new england and the former slave-holding states as far more ancient than this new world experiment… i think it goes back to ireland vs england, scotland vs reality, you know, our distant forebears. as wm faulkner wrote, blood will cry out.

      i’ve had a close email buddy who is born and bred mississippi, although now he’s a fancypants lawyer in a big city. trivia: he played high school ball with walter peyton. (or was it earl cambell? some guy who is arguably the greatest ever, who came out of miss, that would be your guy.)

      anyhow, we go round and round about the south vs north. he too is a faulkner fan. when i was a boy i read everything he wrote, if you call that reading, a ten year old moving his eyes back and forth over the sound and the fury etc. perhaps this is where my yankee attitude comes from: i bought faulkner’s idea that the south is cursed.

      all affection,


  33. progress4what December 15, 2013 at 5:56 pm #

    “Crocodiles have a lot of internal parasites and I’m not sure they are good eating.” ….k-dog….

    Alligator is pretty good, I’ve eaten a good bit of it. It tastes like slightly greasy, and slightly muddy tasting, white meat chicken.

    South of here – where it’s warm enough that the alligators don’t die over the winter – some of the chicken and turkey farmers raise ‘gators. Disposal of dead poultry from a big house, which can raise 50,000+ birds, gets to be a big issue. Alligators love dead chickens. Problem solved – with benefits.

    Anyway, I have no idea how crocodile tastes. But any parasites will be killed if the cook gets the meat hot enough.

    One of my uncles came home from WWII and raised a bit of a snit with my grandmother over her (hand-made, personal farm-raised, healthy and delicious) pork sausage. He told her she wasn’t cooking it well done enough. Fear of undercooked pork was something he’d evidently picked up in the Army Air Corps. “Well done, Mama. Pork’s got to be cooked WELL DONE!”

    It was offensive enough to her that my own mom was still talking about it to me – over 40 years later.

    What is it we say in the South? Never forgit, right?

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 6:10 pm #

      @pro, again:

      point of fact: there has not been a case of trichinosis in the united states since the late 1950s. don’t worry about that sausage.

    • Pucker December 15, 2013 at 7:19 pm #

      I suspect that even in the Outback that the Australian government would probably require a permit to raise saltwater Crocs?

      I guess that one could feed the Crocs all of those wild, feral hogs in the Cape York Peninsula region? I read somewhere that they estimate that there are roughly 24 million wild, feral hogs running around Northern Queensland, Australia. One could bring in some redneck Americans for the round up. Offer ‘em lots of free, ice cold Australian XXXX beer and feral pork barbeque. (The Australians say that it’s called “XXXX” because the Australians who drink it can’t read.)

  34. Janos Skorenzy December 15, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

    Well said Nightshade. The North were the Puritans and the South the Cavaliers. The Purtians want to conquer the World and fill it with their fanaticism. Abortion clinics in Kabul and that kind of thing. That the North was wrong is increasingly obvious to all Men of good will. Our own Ozone is a perfect example of this demented breed. Kdog is a the same though he seem gentler at first glance. Don’t be fooled.

    Of course it gets complicated. Many British Celts fled to Brittany before the Germanic onslaught of Angles, Saxons, and Jutes. Many Celtic Warriors came back with William the Conqueror and along with the Welsh made up much of his army.

    • orionoir@gmail.com December 15, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

      [The North were the Puritans and the South the Cavaliers.]

      @janos — as a personal practice i don’t click through other people’s links because of course the internet is full of froth and frothery beyond all comprehension.

      still, i do urge you to give this somewhat “academic” piece, link below, a read. if nothing else the multi-colored map graphic is worth the price of admission.

      the nightshade nick makes me smile, but for the life of me i cannot remember who you are, unless you’re vlad in a new wrapper. if your overarching theory of the world turns on race war or amway pyramid distributorship well then we’re not destined to be bffs. still, you’ve a nice turn of phrase and i’ve got a feeling there’s a whole lot i could learn from your pov so long as it doesn’t require me buying a gun.


  35. Janos Skorenzy December 15, 2013 at 6:38 pm #

    Arapaho shooter was a Socialist who wanted to ban guns. He was mad at the Debate Team Conservatives for defeating him.


  36. Janos Skorenzy December 15, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

    Billy Jack dies. His movies epitomize the worst of 60′s self righteousness and hatred of Whites – leading to the perceived right to kill them.


  37. BackRowHeckler December 16, 2013 at 7:28 am #

    It looks like QE is coming to an end.

    Jim, how about a few words about the Mandela Extravaganza.

    Like, for example, if we are so broke, how is there plenty of cash to fly several hundred pols across the world to attend a funeral.? It must’ve cost tens of millions.


  38. Lord Blaby of Lawson December 16, 2013 at 7:43 am #

    If QE is indeed coming to an end, it’s because it no longer works as intended, not because it accomplished what official accounts say it has.

    • BackRowHeckler December 16, 2013 at 9:05 am #

      I was thinking QE would become a permanent state of affairs. The next logical step is negative interest rates, where you pay the bank a fee to hold your money. Of course with mortgages and other loans the rates would not be negative.


  39. rube-i-con December 16, 2013 at 8:09 am #

    man controls bionic arm with his mind…

    this is one of the technological leaps that i have been touting in past posts as evidence of our wonderful future, just arriving now…

    the non-luddites out here will easily be able to extrapolate what this means for humankind. others will simply poopoo it, as they do all advances.


    we salute you with our bionic limbs as we pass you off into a bounteous future of boundless exploration and invention

    peace peaceniks


  1. Guest Post: Timing Is (Not) Everything | DailyDeceit - December 10, 2013

    […] Submitted by Howard Kunstler of Kunstler.com, […]

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