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Ho ho ho! It’s that time of year again. Here’s JHK’s holiday classic: A Christmas Orphan.

11-year-old Jeff Greenaway hears his mom and dad argue one night after an office Christmas party. He infers from their garbled squabble that he is an orphan, found in a willow basket on the welcome mat outside their New York apartment. Thinking now that his parents are imposters, he steals away to Grand Central Station and buys a train ticket to Drakesville, Vermont, where he intends to start life all over again.
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Clusterfuck Nation
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Everybody and his uncle, and his uncle’s mother’s uncle, believes that the stock markets will be zooming to new record highs this week, and probably so, because it is the time of year to fatten up, just as the Thanksgiving turkeys are happily fattening up — prior to their mass slaughter.

President Trump’s new Federal Reserve chair, Jerome “Jay” Powell, “a low interest-rate kind of guy,” was obviously picked because he is Janet Yellen minus testicles, the grayest of gray go-along Fed go-fers, going about his life-long errand-boy duties in the thickets of financial lawyerdom like a bustling little rodent girdling the trunks of every living shrub on behalf of the asset-stripping business that is private equity (eight years with the Deep State-ish Carlyle Group) while subsisting on the rich insect life in the leaf litter below his busy little paws.

Powell’s contribution to the discourse of finance was his famous utterance that the lack of inflation is “kind of a mystery.” Oh, yes, indeed, a riddle wrapped in an enigma inside a mystery dropped in a doggie bag with half a pastrami sandwich. Unless you consider that all the “money” pumped out of the Fed and the world’s other central banks flows through a hose to only two destinations: the bond and stock markets, where this hot-air-like “money” inflates zeppelin-sized bubbles that have no relation to on-the-ground economies where real people have to make things and trade things.

Powell might have gone a bit further and declared contemporary finance itself “a mystery,” because it has been engineered deliberately so by the equivalent of stage magicians devising ever more astounding ruses, deceptions, and mis-directions as they enjoy sure-thing revenue streams their magic tricks generate. This is vulgarly known as “the rich getting richer.” The catch is, they’re getting richer on revenue streams of pure air, and there is a lot of perilous distance between the air they’re suspended in and the hard ground below.

Powell noted that the economy is growing robustly and unemployment is supernaturally low. Like his colleagues and auditors in the investment banking community, he’s just making this shit up. As the late Joseph Goebbels used to say describing his misinformation technique, if you’re going to lie, make sure it’s a whopper.

The economy isn’t growing and can’t grow. The economy is a revenant of something that used to exist, an industrial economy that has rolled over and died and come back as a moldy ghoul feeding on the ghostly memories of itself. Stocks go up because the unprecedented low interest rates established by the Fed allow company CEOs to “lever-up” issuing bonds (i.e. borrow “money” from, cough cough, “investors”) and then use the borrowed “money” to buy back their own stock to raise the share value, so they can justify their companies’ boards-of-directors jacking up their salaries and bonuses — based on the ghost of the idea that higher stock prices represent the creation of more actual things of value (front-end-loaders, pepperoni sticks, oil drilling rigs).

The economy is actually contracting because we can’t afford the energy it takes to run the things we do — mostly just driving around — and unemployment is not historically low, it’s simply mis-represented by not including the tens of millions of people who have dropped out of the work force. And an epic wickedness combined with cowardice drives the old legacy news business to look the other way and concoct its good times “narrative.” If any of the reporters at The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal really understand the legerdemain at work in these “mysteries” of finance, they’re afraid to say. The companies they work for are dying, like so many other enterprises in the non-financial realm of the used-to-be economy, and they don’t want to be out of paycheck until the lights finally go out.

The “narrative” is firmest before it its falseness is proved by the turn of events, and there are an awful lot of events out there waiting to present, like debutantes dressing for a winter ball. The debt ceiling… North Korea… Mueller… Hillarygate….the state pension funds….That so many agree the USA has entered a permanent plateau of exquisite prosperity is a sure sign of its imminent implosion. What could go wrong?


New Paintings by JHK 2016 — 2017


Great Fall Reading… JHK’s new book!

“Simply the best novel about the 1960s.”

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Geography of Nowhere The Long Emergency
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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.

623 Responses to “What Could Go Wrong?” Subscribe

  1. Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 9:28 am #

    Shucks, I was really enjoying the lack of predictions in Mr. Kunstler’s biweekly blog.

    Okay folks. The Long Emergency is a great novel, actually a great series. But it’s fiction. We’re not having a long emergency anytime soon. The Dow isn’t going to 4,000, hurricane Harvey didn’t ruin our economy or precipitate a revolution and Irma didn’t wipe Florida off the map. Trump won’t be the last president of the US. Peak oil won’t be the end of the world as we know it. (For those still confused, gas isn’t even $3.00 a gallon headed to $4.00.)

    Here’s what the world looks like in 20 years: A lot like today.

    We’ll still have cities and suburbs and countryside. New York City will be great, just as it is today. Detroit will be better (better than today’s Detroit, not better than New York.) San Francisco will still be beautiful, and rich. Many will commute from the suburbs, including many of the hipsters in Brooklyn today. They will have realized, just as many before them did, that raising kids is hard in the city. The rural areas will look about the same, just a few more solar panels, wind farms and telecommuters.

    We’ll still have cars. Most will be electric, many will be autonomous, but self driving cars won’t be everywhere. Lots of us will still drive, at least some of the time. We’ll still have “gas stations”, and they’ll still sell some gas and diesel. They’ll also sell electricity, maybe some hydrogen and maybe some other alternatives or synthetics.

    We’ll have drones, but we’ll still have mailmen and UPS drivers too. Amazon and Walmart will both be big – on line and in real stores. We’ll get a lot of food delivered, but we’ll still have grocery stores. There will be malls, but probably not as many. There will be some really nice ones.

    The stock market will be double, triple or quadruple what it is today. We’ll have had a major correction or two along the way. A few big companies will be gone, a few you never heard of will be big and most will still be around. Some folks will be predicting an imminent crash.

    We’ll have sent a few folks to Mars, maybe even Elon Musk. I don’t know if Tesla will still be around. Bitcoin will be gone, but the block chain will be big. I have no idea what the price of gold will be. Nobody else does either. If I’m still around, I’ll own a little.

    We’ll have had a woman president or two. Congress will work. We’ll be less concerned about political correctness, but more civil and engaged. The world will be more peaceful, but far from perfectly so. The middle East will be better, but maybe not by much. North Korea will be better; there could be only one Korea. There will be less people dying of starvation and population increase will have stabilized some. Medicine will be great. We’ll get sick, but there will be some amazing cures and preventions.

    Football will be big, but not as big. It might look a little different. I still won’t watch it, except maybe the Superbowl.

    These are predictions, mostly for the US but most apply to the world too. Some will be wrong. We might get hit by a giant meteor, we might have a nuclear war and the sun might burn out, but very unlikely. The vast overwhelming odds are this is just about what the world will look like. Feel free to discuss,civilly.

    • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 9:43 am #

      I’ve been watching your posts for quite a while, and I have one question – who are you, Grace or Phil? Your handle is annoying, like when people name their small business after their kids.

      • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 9:49 am #

        Government troll.

        • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 9:55 am #

          Do you really think so? I’ve been pondering the same question for a few weeks now. If you’re right, that’s a hell of a badge of honor for Jim. And it’s a point in his favor that he hasn’t tried to ban the user. Of course, I doubt that’s as easy as it sounds – would they just keep coming back under other handles?

          Whoever it is, that user is the most pessimistic individual I’ve seen in a very long time. Imagine if this shit-show manages to continue for 20 more years? What a horrific future to contemplate.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:03 am #

            It is more than thinking so. I have seen proof and I have been gang-stalked by homeland security because of being here.

            Coming back under different names has been common. Gracenphil has been here under many different names. Coming back with the same name has also been common. The trick there is to put unprintable characters into a name so they can be changed out to change the name yet the name still prints the same.

            Be careful in assuming Gracenphil is a single individual. A troll cabal has the advantage of sharing names and this can be a real advantage in an argument. By taking turns they can exhaust you into submission. They may not be able to win logically but they can wear you down and strategically bury your post using other comments. The best example of this is Janos commenting about ‘blacks’ every where he can and especially against me.

            The diabolical idea to use racism as a tool here was clever. The official justification and excuse no doubt was to identify white supremacists for investigation, a honey trap function.

            That can be the justification and explanation but the actual reason for its use is to keep this blog on the fringe and make sure it never becomes too popular since dissent can come here.

            Dissent is managed and has been since the Vietnam war. We live in the most clever police state the world has seen. A police state where the citizenry have no idea what is actually going on and how much the citizenry is being manipulated. People do not wonder where the billions of dollars of homeland security money is going enough.

          • ozone November 6, 2017 at 11:26 am #

            K-dog,
            It’s turning out to be a weird ol’ country, ain’t it?
            These deflections and pollution of discourse are more than insidious — they’re downright evil. (Hey, just like the pretended “reasons” for sending economically distressed and deluded trained killers to every corner of the known world!)

            “… the actual reason for its use [distraction and corruption of theme] is to keep this blog on the fringe and make sure it never becomes too popular since dissent can come here.”

            I believe that is the main reason; JHK’s observations and questions are undeniably dangerous to the MICC status quo and continuation of a burgeoning bureaucracy.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 11:51 am #

            Wow, there is a bit of a cult here, and a lot of deranged conspiracy theorying.

            Okay, homeland security hasn’t gang stalked anybody here. Homeland security doesn’t care. (Also – gas wasn’t 17 cents in the seventies, it’s not $3.00 now and it probably won’t be $4.00 soon. And your insurance company doesn’t care if you charge your electric car at home.)

            I have used only one name on here. I’m sure Mr. Kunstler could confirm this, but I’m sure he doesn’t care. He is not part off the cult.

            I can easily win on the logical. I do have a tough time if you think the lunar landing was faked. Or if you think you are being gang stalked.

            I admit it – you’re right about it being a police state where the citizenry have no idea what is going on. Except this one really smart guy on this obscure website. But it’s okay, the government sent their secret troll to take care of him.

            Wow, just wow. I may have to share ths one.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 1:22 pm #

            Fuck you Graycenphil it happened to me. Your claim that ‘homeland security hasn’t gang stalked anybody here’.

            Your pompous ignorance is repulsive and personally insulting. If you were real and don’t believe me what right would you have to make the claim I have not been gang-stalked. A humane response would be to leave it alone. There would be no way for you to know one way or another.

            The fact is I have. Men and even one woman wearing shiny jet black suits and china white shirts sans tie. One even was posting here in a coffee shop I go to sometimes (The Liberty Cafe in Renton )when it was all happening. He commented on my relationship (frendship) with the barista. He was actually employed by TSA and was local. I know this because as chance had it he had gone to High School with the coffe shop owner at the time who I have known for a decade. He loves to talk about old movies and had been out of work before visiting the place and telling Mike about his new job with the TSA a few months before.

            The Keystone cops really fucked up on that one.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 1:34 pm #

            Sure, it happened just like you said. I bet they even came in the silent helicopters…

          • 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 4:26 pm #

            “Gang-Stalked”
            That’s a new one.
            By the TSA on top of it.
            *wow*
            Did they follow you all at once, or one-by-one, slow-like?
            I hear they have a foot fetish, don’t like the shoes and all.

            Janos is a plant or a bot used to delegitimize the site.
            The mere presence of unbridled racism and white supremacism stigmatizes the whole endeavor.
            Keeps people away and keeps it from being taken seriously.

          • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 6:47 pm #

            Yeah because only a Gov Troll would even pretend to care about his own People.

            What a shrunken and sad perspective you have.

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 9:53 am #

        My name is Phil. I’m sorry the handle annoys you, but I probably can’t change it.

        • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 9:57 am #

          Why don’t you give it a shot? After all, we’ll all be here for 20 more years according to you, so you might as well get comfortable. And stop embarrassing poor Grace, it’s getting a little silly at this point.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:06 am #

            We won’t all be here for 20 years, but the country will be.

            Do the folks who think there are government trolls who are paid to This blog also believe the lunar landing was faked? I have wondered if I have stumbled onto some bizarre cult here.

          • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 10:44 am #

            Since JHK pays attention to undercurrents that are pointedly ignored or pooh-poohed by mainstream thinkers, he tends to attract unconventional thinkers.

            However, just as there are lots of ways for a coffee cup to be broken but only one way for it to be intact, likewise it’s a lot easier to be unconventional and wrong than to be unconventional and right. Hence the assorted extremists, moon-landing deniers, conspiracy theorists, and likely propagandists like janet who congregate here.

            Entropy really is inescapable.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:49 am #

            Thank you Elrond. I feel a little more comfortable.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:09 am #

            Elrond,

            While it is easier to be unconventional and wrong than to be unconventional and right it is also easier to be conventional and wrong than to be conventional and right. Much easier than being unconventional actually. Unconventionality attracts self-examination. Conventionality does not.

          • VCS November 6, 2017 at 11:47 am #

            JHK’s post today was great. Powerful. One of his best!

          • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 12:51 pm #

            @K-Dog; Conventionality means never having to self-examine — that’s the main attraction, naturally.

      • Ricechex November 8, 2017 at 1:57 am #

        I think Graycenphil is Janet.

    • FincaInTheMountains November 6, 2017 at 9:46 am #

      From your lips to God’s ears.

    • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 9:46 am #

      “Okay folks. The Long Emergency is a great novel, actually a great series. But it’s fiction.”

      Just a clarification, ‘World Made by Hand’ is a fiction series. ‘The Long Emergency’ is a stand-alone, nonfiction book.

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 9:52 am #

        Thank you Devon.

        • TravisB November 6, 2017 at 10:55 am #

          Its so good to know that everything good will just keep going on forever. That we can just keep shopping and watching football, and not have to pay any attention to the energy situation, over population, deforestation, desertification, war, famine, feeding ourselves, payinb attention to the world not canned and fead to the public from the corprate tit…thank you for your helpful point of view.
          Time to go back to bed!…
          I hope someone brings your voice of reason and hope to the middle east. Might as well bring it to North Korea as well. Maybe even North Africa…India? Porto Rico? Hati?
          Someone to tell them everything is fine, and rich!

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 11:05 am #

            I’m not sure why you would say that, but you are seriously mistaken. I certainly don’t feel that way, nor have I ever said so.

          • kimmasad01 November 6, 2017 at 12:12 pm #

            My 2018 prediction:

            I believe the earth will still be here, humans will also still be here, the trees will be here, and the oceans, most animals, some cars, a lot of bikes, a lot of space junk, less refinable oil and a lot less electric cars because although there may be a demand for them, there is no market.

            Stocks will NOT continue to go up because Bezos, Musk (who’s Tesla, SpaceX and Solar City projects will all go bust) et al, will cash out.

            Bond prices will go down across the board, interest rates will go up, the price of oil will go up (but way too late to bail out the KSA), the student loan racket will collapse, the labor participation rate will continue to decrease, the elites and Hollywood types will continue their deviant, child-trafficking ways after the dust settles on Spacey and Weinstein(s), the opiate crisis will probably stabilize and a lot of folks will become dopesick (but that’ll only last about a week), food will become less available in more locations (Michigan to Florida), California state politics will collapse, there will be another housing “crisis”, DJT’s tax reform plan and other agenda will clear the House, Paul Ryan will vote against it in the Senate (he hates everything), DJT will serve out his term(s), then the American people will elect the REAL nationalist POTUS, Hillary Clinton will be investigated and possibly indicted, and she will probably get sicker and finally croak in 2018, mass shootings will continue until all Americans are armed to the teeth and cc, and finally, water will still be radioactive. And wet.

          • TravisB November 6, 2017 at 9:14 pm #

            I will say that rereading my comment, I came off as rude. I apologize. Whether we agree with each other or not is not as import as whether we respect eachother or not.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:04 am #

            Thank you TravisB. I agree.

        • shotho November 6, 2017 at 6:23 pm #

          I just wanted to say that I don’t think you are some kind of government fiction to lull us into zombies. I suppose you really believe in the fairy tale of prosperity forever, as if you never heard of China, Egypt, Macedonia, Rome, Byzantium, Britain, Russia, Zululand and whatever. By God, this is ‘Murica and will live forever. Semper Fi!

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 11:26 am #

            Forever is a long time. But I’m pretty sure we have quite a few generations of prosperity left. I would also say all those places you list have gotten better over time. Even Egypt, a tough place for the last few years, but a lot better than it was 100 or 1000 years ago. And probably a better place than it was a few years ago too, though not by much.

    • MrTibbs November 6, 2017 at 9:51 am #

      Your rosy view is admirable…..

      2018 will be a cataclysmic year of rest, as 1968, 1978, 1988, 1998, and 2008.

      The present day tent cities from San Diego to Orlando, along with contagion, will peak in 2018.

      The RNC and DNC are DOA.

      The milirary industrial has been successfully outed as bought and paid for WAR PIGS.

      Pastoral nomadics and yeoman farmers will enjoy the proper return to the basics of sustainable life…..many others will not.

      -T

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 9:56 am #

        It wouldn’t be at all surprising if 2018 isn’t as good a year as 2017, as far as the markets go. And we will probably get more sustainable, at least in this country and many others. But I wouldn’t bet on the nomadics and yeoman farmers part.

        • hineshammer November 6, 2017 at 10:01 am #

          I bet you wouldn’t be saying that if you lived in shit-ass Puerto Rico.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:08 am #

            Puerto Rico will probably have a much better 2018 than 2017.

          • kimmasad01 November 6, 2017 at 12:33 pm #

            I bet Puerto Rico won’t be better than 2016.

          • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 7:10 pm #

            No kimmasad01, Puerto Rico will not even have a better year than 1816. I just had a meeting today with the NJSP on working a relief effort and these poor bastards are screwed. But Mike Bloomberg doesn’t care because he is doing great and only going to do greater. It must be a terrible thing to be so self centered and so isolated from humanity to think that you can actually be the center of the universe and the only life that matters. Thank God for empathy, it has served some of us well.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:13 am #

            Well Walter, sometimes bad things happen. Peurto Rico was pretty screwed before the hurricane, then came a huge natural disaster. Sometimes really bad things happen. That doesn’t mean the world is coming to an end.

            I just talked to someone in Peurto Rico, instead of the NJSP. He said it’s pretty rough, but how could it not be after that hurricane. He also told me what he needs. But they are getting by, and are optimistic that things will improve.Thay have to, and we’ll help.

            You’re not helping; you’re tooting your own horn while you predict doom and destruction. Elon Musk, he’s helping. He sees a great future and works toward it. You know who else is helping? Michael Bloomberg.

            bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-05-09/puerto-rico-must-not-waste-its-second-chance

          • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 9:32 am #

            You’re wrong, as you like to say. The Tiny Vulture descends upon the Road Kill to feed.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 11:28 am #

            You mean something bad didn’t happen to Puerto Rico? Now you are as delusional as your buddy Kdog. Or were you just “commanded” to say that?

          • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 11:52 am #

            Mighty Midget Mike will find a way to get the defaulted debt of PR cancelled and then swoop in and rebuild” it, if he sinks any cash into it at ll. It is how the greedy operate and it is easy to do when you have the cash and the power. They can buy all the sellouts they need including those in high places. In the end he will find himself suffering the same fate as Napoleon, another half pint with no conscience.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:21 pm #

            You say he’ll rebuild it. Um, that’s a good thing Walter.

            The Napolean thing seems pretty unlikely. You do know that Bloomberg is giving away all his money?

          • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 5:33 pm #

            Sure you are Tiny, sure you are.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

            You’re being delusional again Walter. Pay attention: I’m not JHK, nobody is commanding you and Bloomberg is giving away his fortune. And he’s doing a lot more to help Puerto Rico than you are.

          • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 11:12 pm #

            Have at it again Mikey, the last word must be yours, though there be no substitute for size.

          • Graycenphil November 8, 2017 at 7:10 am #

            You’re right about the first part; I don’t know what the second part has to do with anything. A commandment, perhaps?

            Hey did you ever think, maybe I’m not JHK but actually Bloomberg? Yeah, that’s it. Quick, tell Kdog, he’ll believe it too.

        • Walter B November 8, 2017 at 10:03 am #

          How one that exists beneath the feet of the herd can find a way to look down at them is beyond me. You have been analyzed and are exposed for what you are. You no longer fool anyone but yourself.

          • Graycenphil November 8, 2017 at 10:31 am #

            Fooled you – you thought I was JHK. You might still think that.

            Analyzed, wow.

          • Walter B November 8, 2017 at 10:45 am #

            No Mikey, never thought you were our host, just data mining. Besides, our host is intelligent and it is apparent when he writes. You on the other hand, well, enough said.

          • Graycenphil November 8, 2017 at 1:19 pm #

            You may not have thought that, but you said you did. And then Jim (maybe really me) told you he’s not me, and then you believed that because he (maybe me) said so. Get a grip man.

            And now you’re thinking I’m Bloomberg. Maybe we are all the same – Bloomberg, Kunstler and me. Think about it – nobody’s ever seen the three of us together have they? Try that one on for a while. And don’t think somthings true, just because some guy on the internet says so.

          • Walter B November 8, 2017 at 3:17 pm #

            I will odder you one last opportunity to have the last word as it is so critical that you do. Thank you for all of the useful data you have supplied me with here. I have been able to complete my work and know know exactly what we are dealing with. See you on Friday. Have at it.

          • Graycenphil November 8, 2017 at 5:24 pm #

            “Useful data” and “completed your work”. That has someting to do with your being “commanded”?

            The last word is not that critical, but you’ve made it desirable. Maybe on Friday, maybe not. See my post below; this is my last week on here.

    • daveed November 6, 2017 at 10:18 am #

      Maybe this is what our future will look like:

      “We are living in the future
      I’ll tell you how I know
      I read it in the paper
      Fifteen years ago
      We’re all driving rocket ships
      And talking with our minds
      And wearing turquoise jewelry
      And standing in soup lines
      We are standing in soup lines”

      –John Prine, “Living in the Future”

    • PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 10:19 am #

      I imagine listening to the song “Everything is Awesome” from the Lego movie, every time I read your posts. 🙂

      • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 10:48 am #

        I read an anecdote about that song. The lyricist was going through a breakup when he wrote it, so every word in it is sarcastic: “Oh yeah, everything is just AWESOME… When you live in a dream.” I think we could all relate to that.

    • jeff2002 November 6, 2017 at 10:33 am #

      Considering we’re in the middle of a downward trend that extends back decades (roughly to the beginning of the Reagan era), I’d say the probability of this scenario occurring is a shade above zero. Whether or not JHK’s timing is on target, we’re going to be riding those trend lines one way or another. And they point down. People have to squint pretty hard to screen out so many troubling signs–such as this morning’s headlines on the mass shooting o’ the week.

    • Jeremy November 6, 2017 at 10:49 am #

      Thanks Gray – I laughed ’till I almost cried.
      You’re a funny guy!

      Fool.

    • Georges1202 November 6, 2017 at 11:21 am #

      Yes, but will tomatoes ever taste like anything again?

      • ozone November 6, 2017 at 11:33 am #

        George,
        Tomatoes will taste like tomatoes if you grow (from seed) heirloom varieties in healthy soil without petrochemical inputs… and the growing season co-operates (more and more, a gamble). Those inputs are becoming too expensive anyway; both ecologically and monetarily.
        May your taste buds be rewarded! 🙂

        • CancelMyCard November 6, 2017 at 8:00 pm #

          True Dat!

          Well said!

    • Bruce E November 6, 2017 at 11:54 am #

      Phil, the Buffett Index gives context to the 23,500 DJIA we see today:

      advisorperspectives.com/dshort/updates/2017/09/06/market-cap-to-gdp-an-updated-look-at-the-buffett-v…

      Equities are frothing well above their relative valuations just before the last big market correction of 2008-2009. This means the relative momentum of a comparable correction would go from +40% to -40% where the 2008-2010 correction went from +30% to -30%. This points to a drop to below 10,000 for the Dow before it bounces.

      You understand this. You already know that “the Dow isn’t going to 4,000” is rhetorical flourish and you already know that 23,500 is completely overvalued and is begging for correction. In fact, your predictions that the Dow will double or even triple in the next 20 years is actually a more-pessimistic fiction/prediction than Jim’s prognostications that some sort of sanity will be injected into this market and it will correct to a point where money will again be a valid mark of value. If the Fed can keep these plates spinning for another generation by stuffing the investment bankers’ pockets full of trillions upon trillions of dollars, somehow limiting the inflation to the stock/bond markets, it just paints a much more dire scenario when the market eventually corrects itself.

      What, exactly, would enable the Fed to continue along this path for the next 20 years? Do you not see that corrections are inevitable? Or is it that you view them as buying opportunities because no correction will ever be too big in the sense of permanently shaking confidence in the markets? Do you know how close we came to a complete collapse in 2008-2010?

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:16 pm #

        I have no doubt that corrections will happen; some will be very big. I think I even said that in the post. I have no secret knowledge of the markets, but a long history is a pretty good indicator. My 4,000 number was a reference to one of Mr. Kunstler’s predictions a while back. I think below 10,000 is extremely unlikely, but certainly can’t say for sure. 50,000, I think, is much more likely.

        I think there is plenty of corruption, and plenty of nonsense in the Fed. But I think this has always been the case, we are just much more aware of it now. Fundamentallly, I believe the economy is still basically solid and the country is strong.

        • Bruce E November 6, 2017 at 12:38 pm #

          Do you agree with the Buffett Index, which indicates that the DJIA at 23,500 is at least 40% overvalued and should be closer to about 16,000 or 17,000? In what way is a DJIA so-inflated a mark of a fundamentally solid/sound economy and not a frothy bubble ready to pop, or at a minimum deflate?

          GDP will go up by about 50% if we can sustain 2% growth (which is optimistic, no?) for the full 20 years in your prediction. Why would the DJIA go up, from it’s already-inflated position where it is now, faster than that and double its value?

          Wouldn’t a much more level-headed, but still optimistic, prediction for the DJIA for it to correct and stabilize and then grow with GDP at 2%, from about 16,500 to maybe 25,000 from now to 2037? What is it about the Dow that you think it can outpace an optimistic 2% sustained GDP growth with a sustained >3.5% index growth (on average, with perhaps two or three corrections), without a fundamental correction to its current frothy overvalued state?

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:48 pm #

            I’m not familiar with the Buffet Index, though I’m fairly familiar with Warren Buffett, and like him very much. That said, I’m well aware that he is not always right.

            The Dow may well be overvalued right now, and due for a correction. 16,000 or 17,000 seems kind of low, but I’m sure I don’t know.

            I think a reasonble prediction for the Dow would be based on it’s history. I haven’t done the numbers, but I think long term it appreciates at about 5%, not including dividends, not adjusted for inflation? So I think my double, triple or quadruple is fair for a rough estimate.

          • swmnguy November 6, 2017 at 3:17 pm #

            One problem with any analytic approach to the stock market is that it requires that the “rules” as we understand them are in effect and enforced. I’m far from convinced that is the case.

            Many of us (I’m not pointing at you) think of the “laws” of economics as if they were “laws” of science and cannot be broken. However, Economics is not an science, no matter how we try to apply scientific techniques to the study. Economics is a specifically defined branch of human psychology. It seems to respond to trends, and we can make pretty good generalizations about it, but when people change their minds, the “laws” of economics go out the window.

            When we can simply redefine all the terms, it’s not a science. Therefore it won’t behave as we would expect, based on the rules.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:19 am #

            I mostly agree Swmnguy. Perhaps the only reliable rule of economics is that the rules don’t always work. But I’m looking at history of the market, and it’s pretty long and consistent. Someday it may end, but it seemd unlikely this is the day. It has been through much worse.

    • Catconspiracy November 6, 2017 at 12:00 pm #

      Hello Grayce,

      Identifiers for trolls include jumping on a blog to be the first to comment, then comes the number and frequency of comments. Add to that blatant falsehoods and straw man arguments. You don’t even know our hosts writings well enough to comment accurately about them. You have all this going for you in your intitial comment this morning. Congratulations. You have, thankfully only briefly, managed to drive the content of the discussion in an unintelligent and irrational direction.

      Your long list of wonderfulness reminded of an undergraduate history class, sophomore year, which included reading Volataire’s Candide.. At first, being naive and still not quite literate, I thought Pangloss was for real. Couldn’t immediately deconstruct his viewpoint. Until the overwhelming tragedies being faced by humanity caused me to say “something in the milk just ain’t clean”. Your perspective is like that. Who wouldn’t want all you say is so to be true? We could all go back to sleeping well at night. Alas Pangloss had it all wrong and you do as well.

      Your expressed views are like those of Dr. Pangloss. “Private misfortune makes for the general good, therefore the more private misfortunes there are, the more the general good.” The cost of your sugar, your gasoline, your stock portfolio, your Amazon.account is some man somewhere on the planet without a functioning hand and a lost leg. That’s ok with you? All for the best?

      What you carry on about in this comment and I have found all your comments smacks of a tale told by an idiot, signifying nothing. You never offer any practical solutions or admit to the existential agony of existence.

      Even Candide got with the program by the end of his travels and found that cultivating his own garden was the only thing that would save him from weariness, vice and want.

      Come on Grayce, you can do better. At the very least become a better troll. You are just too obvious. And your sock puppets are too.

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:39 pm #

        Good Morning Catconspiracy. I like to post early because 1) I look forward to Mr. Kunstler’s blog and 2) the responses pretty quickly devolve into conspiracy theories, racism, cultism and worse. I try to respond to any reasonable posts (and a few that are just too ridiculous to pass up – gang stalking by DHS?) because that is why I came to the blog. If that makes me a troll, so be it. When folks suggest I’m a paid government troll, I know we’re talking cults and conspiracy theories. You can call me a troll if you so believe, and I’m okay with it. If you think I’m paid by the Deep State, you’re delusional.

        I have read all of JHK’s fiction, and some of his non-fiction, so I’m, fairly familiar with it. I like it, but I’m also aware the predictions are way, way off. I came here wondering if they were just a literary device, but I don’t believe that is the case.

        I’m not really sure what you are talking about with the Voltaire stuff. If you want to explain it, that would be nice. If not, that’s okay too.

        I also don’t know what you mean about the “man without a functioning hand and a lost leg”. If you are trying to say I don’t care about unfortunates, you’re mistaken. I’m not sure why you would say that, but I’m willing to listen.

        I most certanly do not admit to the existential agony of existence. I’m well aware that there is a wide range of contentment in the world, but I do not believe that our existence is fundamentally bad. On the contrary, I believe life is fundamentally good, albeit with all too many exceptions.

      • OHealihy November 6, 2017 at 1:27 pm #

        Trolling the trolls ? BRAVO !
        You are soooooo busted.
        For almost eighteen years I have read this column weekly, and I know your style- you just can’t fucking hide it.
        Intellect, wit, charm, context, timing, – nothing is lacking.
        Nice article, as usual.
        Thanks!

      • Ricechex November 8, 2017 at 2:26 am #

        Wow, Catconspiracy. So well written and accurate.

    • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:12 pm #

      America will lose the reserve currency. Address the ramifications of that and you will lose the rose colored glasses.

      • Georges1202 November 6, 2017 at 2:00 pm #

        Won’t that be a sharp stick in the eye. Imagine the petrodollars converting to Euros. The Chinese are buying all the gold. The US awash in worthless paper, up to its ears in debt. Should be a Rogers and Hammerstein musical.

    • BuckP November 6, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

      All of this future prosperity will be made possible by the dollar remaining the world’s reserve currency and Crude being traded using petrodollars. Sure! The BRICS might have something to say about that. The petroyuan backed by gold is about to enter the world scene. Will we still be the world’s cop in 20 years.? Loss of reserve status would equal hyperinflation or banana republic status!

    • Tate November 6, 2017 at 3:12 pm #

      Excuse me, Graycenphil, but you’re just wishy-washy. That’s what’s so irritating about you. What’s the point of making predictions if you’re not going out on a limb? You suck all the interest out of it.

      Lenin said that there are decades when nothing happens and then there are weeks when decades happen.

      I have a feeling, only a feeling, that we’ve been living for too long in the former and are on the cusp of entering the latter. Stability breeds instability as Minsky pointed out.

      • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:21 am #

        I am pretty wishy-washy on the predictions. If you’re looing for absolute certainty about the future, I’m not your guy. But he’s pretty easy to find on here.

    • david higham November 6, 2017 at 5:15 pm #

      Please answer this: Have you read ‘The Long Emergency’? I have
      read your comments here. I don’t think you have read it,or if you have,you don’t appear to have understood it.

      • david higham November 6, 2017 at 6:33 pm #

        I don’t really need your reply. It is evident that you haven’t read it.
        Your comment above states that it is a novel (fiction), and part of
        a fiction series . ‘The Long Emergency’ is a non-fiction book.
        It is not a part of the ‘World Made by Hand’ series.
        But feel free to continue pontificating about it.

        • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:26 am #

          You are correct about the titles. That has already been pointed out on here, so apparently you don’t read the comments. Or you are just parroting others, a likely possibility.

          And you’re wrong about me not reading The Long Emergency, as well as the World Made by Hand series. I have read both. I have also heard Mr. Kunstler talk about the series and say he does expect, in his lifetime, to go through a long emergency like in the book.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 6:43 pm #

      Yeah, but will there be any White people left?

      • GreenAlba November 6, 2017 at 7:29 pm #

        ‘Yeah, but will there be any White people left?’

        More importantly, will there be any psychiatrists left to help people suffering hopelessly from an idée fixe?

        • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 7:33 pm #

          Some things are important enough to never forget. You didn’t forget to eat lunch today, right? Survival is like that. You need to use your Urizen more and stop talking from Uranus.

    • DrGonzo November 6, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

      My outlook is not nearly as rosey as yours. But I give you kudos for calling out JHK for his asinine “the global economy will melt down within the next ten weeks” predictions, the ones he’s been making with annoying regularly for the last ten years.

      I’m happy to say I’ve ignored JHK’s predictions for the last eight years and have thus made out more handsomely with my investments than I ever would have dared imagine. (I trust Kunstler’s gold bars and canned food investments have also paid off handsomely.)

      It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to recognize that the US stock market has gotten WAY ahead of itself in the last year or three. Thus, smart investors are taking a chunk of their securities investments off the table now. Because a 15% to 30% stock market “correction” is all but inevitable. It won’t be the end of the world. In fact, it will be a healthy and good thing. It probably won’t happen for another 12-18 months, in my opinion. And foreign investments will likely fare ok.

      But when it does, dollars to donuts JHK will laud it as a sign that The End Has Come! The End Has Come!

      So be it. I will likely use it as a buying opportunity. Because, as you suggest, Graceandphil, the world will not get turned radically inside-out as a result. Manufacturers will keep manufacturing. Workers will keep working. Power plants will keep powering. Drivers will keep driving (though maybe less, and burning less fossil fuel). Farmers will keep farming.

      We’ll see some tough times ahead. But if this small planet of ours can manage to get a handle on, and reverse, the overpopulation thing, we’ll ultimately do ok.

      Of course, this assumes we can also keep unstable men-boys like Trump away from the nuclear button. And ignorant Americans who support crypto-fascists away from the voting booth. That’s what worries me most.

      • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:31 am #

        Thank youvery much DrGonzo. That’s almost enough to make me stay on the forum. Almost.

        Too bad HST isn’t here to see the future. And comment on it.

        • DrGonzo November 8, 2017 at 9:33 am #

          I appreciate your reasoned and articulate posts here. As mentioned, I’m not as sanguine about our future prosperity as you are. But neither am I hunkering down in my fallout shelter waiting for the end to come. Things are seldom as rosy as people hope they will be, but neither are they as calamitous as they fear.

          Your comments are a nice antidote to JHK’s increasing devolution into cranky annoyance with outspoken black athletes, transgender politics, and young people who don’t dress like he does. I predict here and now that one of his comments in his next blog will be a slam at Virginia for voting a transsexual into a public office. (You know, the really important things we should obsess over.)

          I used to enjoy JHK’s astute observations on our unsustainable auto-centric ‘happy motoring’ culture. Now this blog seems to mostly serve as a meeting place for conspiracy theorists, end-timers, and racists. Creepy.

          • Graycenphil November 8, 2017 at 1:08 pm #

            Thanks again DrGonzo. You’re may well be right that I’m too sanguine about our future prosperity. I’m sure you’re right about fallout shelters and impending doom. (Well, I sure hope you are.)

            Truth is, I’m not actually that sanguine about our future prosperity. All I’ve really said is that the nonstop predictions of various dooms have been wrong, and will continue to be. I do think our future is pretty much like our present, but a litle better, as the future generally is. Not that there won’t be some ups and downs along the way. Some folks have been having a tough time understanding that position.

            You are right about creepy. I’ve had a few laughs, but there are some pretty disturbing aspects to this forum too. Posts kind of get buried on here after a day or two, but I stated somewhere that this would be my last week writing; it’s just not very productive.

            But I thank you for your thoughts, would be happy to converse on some more acceptable forum and wish you the best. If we are right about the future not being so bad, perhaps we can fly our Ubers to the robot bar where I’ll gladly buy you a drink.

    • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 11:50 am #

      Well, I think this is my last week here. I know that suits some folks just fine. Can’t say it hasn’t been interesting, but it hasn’t been very productive. I will take away a few memories and a few laughs, so thanks for that.

      To the folks who got upset with me, I do apologize. That was never my intent. I wish you all the best.

      To the few who engaged civilly and productively, I thank you, I learned a bit and enjoyed the discussion.

      Thanks especially to Mr. Kunstler. I enjoy your writing, I think you have an important message and look forward to buying and enjoying your next novel. If the next 30 years are as good as I expect them to be, you will deserve some credit for having warned us of what could have been.

      See you all in the future. If I’m right and we’re still driving cars, you owe me a drink in the suburban robot-bar. If I’m wrong and it’s a world made by hand, stop by my place and I’ll cook you a nice meal on the wood stove. Either way, Godspeed.

    • Undecided333 November 7, 2017 at 1:46 pm #

      Hello all, new to Kunstler Blog and enjoying it very much. It’s nice to see people are allowed to express their views (even quite ignorant ones) without being troll stamped and kicked off. I used to read and comment on the Fabius Maximus blog but disagreement there lands one unable to participate in the discussion.

      I look forward to reading more posts and comments.

      • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 3:03 pm #

        Hey, I was just leaving – you can have my spot. But you might not want it.

        Welcome to the forum, try to be nice to everyone and keep a sense of humor.

    • orbit7er November 7, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

      Does anyone dare to ask the question of how it is claimed that the economy is “growing” when Puerto Rico is a total wreck, major swaths of Houston were destroyed and Florida also suffered major damage in the triple play Hurricanes from Climate Change? How does that work?
      We just assume that there are suddenly jobs to repair and rebuild the Climate disasters but somehow the destruction of billions of dollars of actual built houses, power, roads, factories etc is just not counted?
      What kind of economics is that?
      If my house gets destroyed I have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars of actual built value. This somehow counts for nothing as the econ wizards tally up all the jobs created rebuilding what had been working perfectly fine for very little cost?
      HUH?

    • Flick Ford November 8, 2017 at 11:19 pm #

      Your vision of the future tells me more about you than it can possibly tell anyone about what the world will look like in 20 years. I have to assume you are too young to know just how much the world has changed in 20 years. Perhaps you trust equanimity will rule the day? I would love to see evidence of that.

      No one 20 years ago saw the enraptured digital age capture of communication, culture and social interaction. I adapted and became one of the first to art direct a national magazine with desktop publishing programs. But because it was always a work tool for me I find recreation on the computer or digital devices unfulfilling compared to pursuing my hobbies of fishing and fish-keeping, reading a good book or doing just about any outdoor activity, preferably with friends.

      No one expected to see the destruction of the middle class and labor with the rise of an economy based on rent-seeking financial capitalism replacing real GDP. Having participated in the workforce for 50 years and having experienced flat lined wages and rising costs of living I am no longer able to procure a steady stream of savings (without interest if banked). Fortunately I can make a living for the time being.

      In the US 50% of 25 year olds live at home with their parents, unable to find the means to form an independent household. This mirrors Europe and most of Latin America and I think it’s more natural in those cultures, here it is perceived to be a burden, a shame. What does that imply? I submit that the American Dream will have to be revised in the future to include tighter familial support to survive. Starting a garden is advised here.

      The term conspiracy theory has become a pejorative when it was the basis for our system of checks and balances. Formerly political science emphasized that the abuse of power was a reality and had to be guarded against continuously (Charles Beard). Political science as it is taught today emphasizes a means to an end approach that utilizes mythos – propaganda – over transparency (Leo Strauss). Consequently challenges to official stories or acts of government are treated as inconceivable insults to a personal and cultish notion of national obeisance and treated with a smug insouciance.

      No one could have imagined living in a militarized police security state tied to a mandate for endless war to justify ever-increasing budgets. That wacky old General, President Eisenhower warned us about the MIC, what a nut job, a real tinfoil hat case, right Phil?

      Your status quo version of the future will most likely as you suggest lead to more of the same misadventure, abuse and look a lot shabbier – worse for wear. It will be less appealing to those who can discern the diminishment. But soon enough after that – no one else will notice.

      • Graycenphil November 9, 2017 at 7:42 am #

        Truth is, I love conspiracy theories. And I loved the movie too. But 99% of them are just crazy. Of course, that would mean 1% of them are true; I suspect that is about right. And there are probably a few things happening that none of the theorists even thought of.

        But the 1% that are true are not the ones about government trolls paid to infiltrate this website, and they aren’t about DHS gang stalking people and Mr. Kunstler isn’t on some secret government payroll.

        I don’t think we have a mandate for endless war, but some parts of the world are pretty rough. If we can help, at an acceptable cost, I believe we should. If we can’t reasonably help, let’s stay away.

        With a very few notable exceptions, I think our police do a great job in sometimes difficult situations. We are wise to mind the militarization, but they need adequate tools for their job. I don’t see a big issue there.

        Overall I’m fond of Eisenhower and his warning was wise. And I stand by my 20 year prediction. I’ll gladly bet on that over Mr. Kunstler’s.

        • Flick Ford November 9, 2017 at 10:29 am #

          Official stories put forth by our government are for the most part conspiracy theories in case you haven’t noticed. People who call for investigations when an official conspiracy theory story defies the laws of physics, or involve the inexplicable disappearance and/or destruction of evidence and ignore eyewitness testimony are not at all conspiracy theorists, they are skeptics, as I am, and for good reason. I have never seen the movie “Conspiracy Theories”, I can do without Hollywood trivializations altogether, and I don’t find them informative or entertaining.

          Put WMD in your 1% real conspiracy theories category and keep your eyes open. A year’s worth of allegations of Russians hacking the election – a conspiracy theory – without a shred of evidence much less proof should wind up in your 1% real conspiracy theory basket as well. I wouldn’t call the Fed’s quarterly economic reports a conspiracy but they are deceptive, engineered to project prosperity.

          We have been at war for 16 years, far longer than any other period in our history. When the Vietnam war hit the 9 year mark even the hawks started to cave, and the war-loving Luce empire published a weeks dead in LIFE magazine. Your blithe denial of the current state of perpetual war, thinking we are helping in the areas of conflict we’ve instigated, is sheer ignorance on an astonishing level. Your fondness for Eisenhower notwithstanding, your comprehension of his warning message and its dreaded fulfillment is nil.

          The police have been militarized with a war weapons program (1033), during a period of steadily dropping crime. Why do the police need $5.1B worth of military hardware? This program mandates that police departments declare an item’s intended use or return it, however that audit trail is not subject to public review. A defense department audit did find out 75% of these inventories were not documented. This is the definition of a very big issue.

          You obviously are immune to the economic suffering that has been placed upon the majority of the country and appear to a true believer in Wall Street neoliberal economics. I lost a 6 year 3 book publishing deal with my publisher in the fall of 2008 when my second title came out and the economy crashed. I saw that publishing company of 60 employees reduced to a skeleton crew. My girlfriend’s entire field, event planning, went up in flames. We went through 4 years of hardship before we managed to land on somewhat steady financial ground. I wish I could tell you to expect blowback for the monumental white-collar crimes of that period, but Americans have a long hard fall to experience before they approach unbearable conditions. The trajectory is there, no question, nothing has changed to stop the looting or bring back livable wages.

          Your 20-year prediction raises a lot of questions. The biggest one for me, as I have illustrated above is a question of accountability. The path we are currently on has dispensed with accountability on the part of the decision makers in every area that matters for our future. I don’t see that changing and it would be foolish to think that it won’t have negative consequences for all but government employees and the .01% they work for.

          • Graycenphil November 9, 2017 at 9:35 pm #

            I suppose it depends on how you define conspiracy theory; I was speaking of the borderline lunacy ones, which are the most fun. Skeptcism is definitley a virtue and we should all be skeptical, especially of the government. And of online blogs.
            The movie is good, it’s just about the tin foil hat theories, and the ending is great.

            I’m not sure where you are going with the WMDs. Iraq? We did of course find somwe WMDs there, and I’m glad they aren’t in the wrong hands – like Hussein’s sons, or ISIS. Not to say that the Iraq invasion wasn’t a mistake. Our intentions may have been good; I don’t know and am not sure many others know.

            Afghanistan was the right thing to do, as was Bush Sr’s Iraq/Kuwait adventure. So I do believe we can help, and we’ve seen it in Afghanistan and Kuwait. It is not an easy part of the world, obviously. But Afghanistan is a far better place today than it was under the Taliban. Especially for girls and women. Kuwait would not have done well under Hussein. Not to mention Bin Laden operating out of Afghanistan.

            Crime is indeed decreasing in most places, part of why I say things are getting better. Not all places, though, and there are some different types of crime, particularly terrorism. I don’t see any harm in giving police departments armored vehicles that were going to be disposed of anyway. It’s our responisbility to see that that military equpmnet is used properly. New York City has 40,000 cops, a virtual army, and a lot of pretty scary stuff. But the department is well controlled, and uses their equipment properly. I have no problem with that. I’m glad they have it in case they (we) need it.

            You are correct, I am fairly immune to economic suffering, by design and luck and time. But I am well aware of it. I have a relative in the event planning field, and I worked with her part time for many years. I know plenty of folks who are having troubles. But I do believe the economy is basically strong, and currently improving. Not for everybody, not equally, but it never was and never will be. Not that we shoudn’t do all we can to make it better and fairer.

            I don’t know that accountability is any worse than it has been in the past. I do believe we are much more aware of it now, and that is a good thing. Except it makes us feel worse, because now we know. Before it was blissful ignorance. That probably applies to a lot of what we see as problems today. Things that have always gone on, but hidden, are now exposed. We are just so much more connected that there are a lot less secrets. In the long run that’s good as the sunshine leads to solutions.

            If you care to share it on here, tell us what books you have written. I’m curious. Obviously if you do not wish to essentially identify yourself on the forum, that’s fine.

          • Graycenphil November 9, 2017 at 9:39 pm #

            Why, after a few months on here, when I finally decide to leave, do sensible, intelligent, reasonable, thoughtful people suddenly show up?

            Well thanks anyway; you made a good last week.

    • aibohphobia November 9, 2017 at 2:02 am #

      Hmm, interesting. Twenty years is an ambitious time frame. Did you select 20 years to match the length of a ‘turning,’ a la Strauss and Howe? The “Fourth Turning” theory of the cycles of history would largely agree with you, G-Phil. 20 years puts us into the ‘First Turning’ part of that cycle–Rebuilding and re-organization, optimism, if I remember it. Strauss and Howe would say we have to transit the crisis first though. Do you actually not see some sort of major crisis developing within the next 3 to 5 years?
      You do seem to be drawing straight lines from past and present data points into the future: usually a mistake, since history and nature tend to go in sine waves of feast and famine. It may actually be THE primary investing mistake where stocks and bonds are concerned…

      • Graycenphil November 9, 2017 at 7:48 am #

        I picked 20 years pretty much just because it’s easier. The longer the time frame, naturally, the harder the prediction. I do not see some major worldwide, or US crisis developing in the next 3 -5 years. Depending, of course, on your definition of major. I would say we haven’t had one in the last 3-5 years either.

        I do draw a rather straight line; it’s an average of the ups and downs. I would suggest that the primary investing mistake is more likley trying to guess the ups and downs. Invest continuously, and don’t be afraid to buy even more on the downs.

  2. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 9:34 am #

    Mr. K – paragraph two is a joy to read!
    Thankyou
    wm

    • FincaInTheMountains November 6, 2017 at 9:49 am #

      Was that the longest mother-bleeping English sentence I’ve read in my life!

    • daveed November 6, 2017 at 10:01 am #

      “…..like a bustling little rodent girdling the trunks of every living shrub on behalf of the asset-stripping business that is private equity (eight years with the Deep State-ish Carlyle Group) while subsisting on the rich insect life in the leaf litter below his busy little paws.”

      This is most delicious. What a picture it paints.

  3. Georges1202 November 6, 2017 at 9:34 am #

    Jim,

    I wonder if they still use that arch-bullshit ‘basket of stuff’ to gauge inflation. Only a small slice can now afford the things working folk used to take for granted – health care, college, a home.

    I know you have dismissed it before, but watch out for cryptocurrency. Money is now a marker for nothing – when the agreement dries up, crypto will step in as a people’s holder of value. Especially those with strong use cases like Etherium and Ripple.

    • James Howard Kunstler November 6, 2017 at 9:56 am #

      Crypto currency is a video game. –JHK

      • Georges1202 November 6, 2017 at 10:01 am #

        Ah, I thought so too when Bitcoins were a dollar. Now they are $7,300 and rising. Isn’t the idea of wrestling ‘finance’ away from criminal banks at least somewhat intriguing?

        • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:14 am #

          The other op is that the Bankers are in control.
          Bring people into ecoins, then take over.
          Shut down exchanges and have SDR ecoins.
          Some nations are the early stages of that.

        • outsider November 6, 2017 at 10:46 am #

          Call me a Luddite, but I have no idea what Bitcoins are, nor do I want to learn. I also have no desire to use Twitter or Facebook, nor am I interested in the latest Apple smart phones. My basic flip phone, with no tracking device, works just fine.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:52 am #

            Bitcoins are pretty close to nothing, but they take an awful lot of energy to create and they cost a lot of money.

            I have a flip phone too. But don’t think you can’t be tracked with it.

          • capt spaulding November 6, 2017 at 11:39 am #

            Flip phones are great. That’s all that Capt Kirk and the crew needed, and they could travel at the speed of light. Now we have I phones and those flip phones are so last millennium.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:58 pm #

            My wife and kid have iPhones, and they’re great. I’m content with my flip phone. If and when it breaks, I’ll probably get an iPhone.

        • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 12:11 pm #

          Ah, I thought so too when Bitcoins were a dollar. Now they are $7,300 and rising. Isn’t the idea of wrestling ‘finance’ away from criminal banks at least somewhat intriguing?

          Georges,
          Yes, thank God for the “Internets” and the safety and security it assures….

      • FincaInTheMountains November 6, 2017 at 10:04 am #

        Good for international narco-business and stripping China from its hard earned capitals.

        Looks like it’s going to stay with us for a while, a least until the new Bretton Woods conference.

  4. Walter B November 6, 2017 at 9:41 am #

    Jim,

    What is going on here these days? Is your blog being assaulted from some propaganda spewing entity that must jump in and counter your honest concerns and questions to turn away those that come here for decent, worthwhile discussion? Has your personality split in a Jekyll and Hyde paradigm where you counter your own arguments for whatever unfathomable reason? I can only speak for myself, but I have always come here to read what you have to say and enjoy worthwhile discussion with those who are capable of intelligent thought. I have to tell you that it is getting very difficult to enjoy this place with what has been happening lately here. Perhaps public comment has outlived its usefulness as bots and shills can really screw up the free speech process, don’t you think? I hope this can be worked out. Those of us that are struggling hard against the corruption out here have a difficult enough time dealing with the actual humans that we are forced to be around and limiting our stress and aggravation levels is becoming a more important concern as every day goes by.

    • James Howard Kunstler November 6, 2017 at 10:01 am #

      Walter B — Are you asking am I Gracenphil character? No, I certainly am not. He’s entitled to his view, which I regard as very dumb or perhaps mendacious, as trolls often are. Anyway, I enjoy reading his raptures of triumphalism. They’re perfect in their way. — JHK

      • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:07 am #

        Your support of much of the nonsense here makes us wonder. You don’t like being accused of being some of your own trolls and I do not think you are. But you bring the suspicion on yourself.

        • windward November 6, 2017 at 10:36 am #

          Once again they rejected my New Yorker cartoon caption. Is JHK behind it?

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:43 am #

            No but perhaps you are!

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:14 am #

        Fat, Dumb and Happy. For now.

      • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 10:20 am #

        Thank you Jim, that is why I come here, to listen to what you have to say. A lot of your work has indeed been “fiction”, you know, like the fiction that used to dream about machines that could fly, or vessels that could descend to the bottom of the oceans. Pure fiction of course, for the horse drawn carriage is the best and will only get better. In the end, what matters the most is what we have done with the time we have spent in this form of existence. There is much value in reaching out and helping others rather than concentrating on coddling ourselves unless of course we have nothing of value to offer. You sir have always given us great value and I thank you. Keep up the great work.

        • ozone November 6, 2017 at 10:56 am #

          Walter B,
          I concur with your viewpoint here. While it’s nice to dream the big dreams, that sometimes morphs into telling oneself the big lies, and I always find it most satisfying to get my hands into real things that may give a chance for a decent life for those who will have to follow. I happen to think they have an epic struggle before them, and it does them a ‘yuge’ disservice to have them sniffing after unicorn farts when there will be much work to be done.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:12 am #

            A fatal disservice!

          • ozone November 6, 2017 at 11:40 am #

            K-dog,
            Yes, and truly.
            A young family member was of the opinion that they “would just DIE” if they had to live in the willy-wags without all the modern conveniences and entertainments. Wellsir, they might just get that unfortunate chance… 🙁

      • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:22 am #

        Thank you JHK. As you know, I enjoy your writing too. You are also entitled to your view (wrong, I believe) that my views are dumb. But they aren’t mendacious. They are honest opinions, based on facts and history.

        I will happily compare my raptures of triumphalism to your predictions of doom, if you care to.

        Troll is a tougher call. I was well aware that my posts would create dissent. I had hoped the dissent would be more intellectual discussion of the issues, and less personal attacks.

        • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 12:23 pm #

          Phil,
          Can we begin by deconstructing various issues that are addressed on this site?

          Let us begin with poverty/lack of jobs in a post industrial society. How does this existential,Malthusian issue become addressed in your worldview? Consider federal dysfunction and unprecedented debt into your equation…please.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 1:08 pm #

            Technology always changes, and many folks are not comfortable with those changes. They used to be called Luddites. But the average worker is far better off today than the textile workers of the 19th century were who wanted to smash the machines.

            The jobs will be different (not that much different in 20 years) and I’m sure I can’t imagine them any better than textile workers could have imagined our jobs today.

            The federal government has always been somewhat dysfunctional, but that is unfortunatley the nature of the beast. At the end of the day, it works. Just not as well as we would like it to. That said, I am all for a smaller government and more local control in most matters.

            The high levels of debt, both public and private, are a big problem. I personally have never much cared for debt, and that has worked well for me. I think that would be a good thing for the government too. Fortunately we are all aware of the problem. If we address it sooner, it will be better. But eventually we will address it. It will not bring on the end of civilization.

          • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 6:17 pm #

            Phil,
            Ahhh, let us keep our comparisons at least within the 20th century… I would opine that if those dispossessed by technology were to be asked if they were better off 40 years ago, if their jobs were more secure, if their lifestyle were more satisfying, we would receive very different answers than would be proffered today.

            As far as addressing the “national debt”? Twenty TRILLION dollars is the wrath of God…there is no addressing it. Only full-on debasement or real GDP growth, coupled with low single-digit inflation will serve to mitigate it…and Growth? Certainly not in the 21st Century. The Fed has been printing money in attempts to jump-start that GDP growth…without success.

            Population is increasing, middle-class wealth disappearing, along with a sense of hope in those possessing the ability to observe.

            Will it not bring on the end of civilization? It already has for millions….

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:45 am #

            There is no doubt that those dispossessed by technology would say they were better off before they were dispossessed. But that has always been true, this century, last century and always will be when it happens. And it will happen again. It’s an unfortunate and difficult problem, and deserves attention, but it’s not a reason to stop technology. There are many, many others who have benefited from technology. We do have a responsibility to help those disposessed, and they also have a responsibility to help themselves.

            We have a lot of debt, but we are a very big wealthy country. It would be better if we didn’t have the debt, but we do and we’ll pay it. I see no reason to assume economic growth is impossible in the 21st century. On the contrary, I would say it is inevitable. Low inflation? We’ve had it for a long time. It can continue, though it will surely move up and down at times.

          • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 10:49 am #

            Grace,
            There is no intent to “repay” the” national debt…but rather to allow the nominal GDP, growth plus inflation, to winnow it away, as was done after the Eisenhower administration, and after. There may be “growth” in our economy, using some metric, but the debt will not be mitigated in the 21st century without massive debasement of the currency.

            True, technology cannot be stopped, it is immutable…but no one is suggesting that technology be avoided. Many, however, give too much credence to technology providing black swans to address our existential issues.

            Capitalism can be very cruel to those not invested well into the system. Social issues will be unavoidable…factor this into your equation. With all respect, history is not affirming your kind and gentle future.

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 11:37 am #

            I suppose inflation winnows all debt, but I don’t think we will see enough inflation for $20 trillion dollars. I sure hope not.

            Capitalism stinks, but its the best system we have, to paraphrase Churchill, (I think). I’ll take the history of capitalism over the history of all the other systems. There will be social issues, as there always have been, that we will have to deal with.

            What do you see in history bringing us down?

          • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 12:10 pm #

            “What do you see in history bringing us down?”

            Phil,

            Human history is replete with examples that parallel our current experiences. Rome, Greece, Ottomans, Florentines…why expect different results from similar circumstances?

            The most obvious, though trite, example Is the Roman Empire…relative peace and a lack of adversity over several generations promoted a population that could not maintain their civilization from threats internal and external. You know, fat, soft, distracted….

          • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:30 pm #

            I’m not sure our experiences are so similar To those historical ones, and they are taking place in very diffeent worlds. And those actually remain pretty nice places to live. Certainly no long emergencies there.

            I know it’s fun to say we are fat, soft and distracted. I’ve said it myself more than once. But I don’t think we really are. It’s no problem to find people who fit those descriptions, of course, but they are just popular caricatures (and TV reality stars and internet sensations), for the most part. We still have plenty of lean, hard and dedicated folks. I think of our military right away, but also the great recovery in Houston and Florida, even the two yahoos in Texas remind me we are not that soft.

      • 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 4:14 pm #

        There goes my Phil Hendrie theory.

        • Raindogs November 6, 2017 at 6:18 pm #

          Herb Sewell is the only sane man in an insane world.

          God I love Phil, what a legend.

      • badberries November 6, 2017 at 6:20 pm #

        GnP writes in a concise and logical fashion, unfortunately, He/She/It doesn’t allow for those unforseeable events that we all know will, at some time in the next 20 years, kick us squarely in the berries.

        Let’s compare the Stock Market response to 9/11 versus the hypothetical response we can expect from…say, ummm, Ras Tanura being launched into a low earth orbit. (the current coup in KSA including the murders of 8 VIPs seems noteworthy…as L. Ludlow would say,”mustard seeds..”)

        GnP lives in a rich fantasy world where pandemics and shit-storms are the stuff of fiction.

        Good article in this months Smithsonian mag. about the misnomer ed “Spanish Flu” – 100 years ago. The article suggests that we’re due for a re-visit….wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands….die anyway.

        • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:52 am #

          Thank you Badberries, I think. There is no doubt that unforseeable events, some disastrous and cataclysmic, will happen in the future. Just as they’ve always happened in the past, and we’ve always recovered.

          Will the earth be hit by a giant meteor? Will all out nuclear war happen? Will some fast moving, lethal virus mutate and wipe out the human race? All possible, of course. I think I even allowed those possibilities at the end of my predictions. But they’re extremely unlikely possibilities, not worthy of consideration or useful in our planning.

      • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 4:49 pm #

        The only reason that the thought even occurred to me was because of the week after week ability to not only be the first post but usually a wordy one as well. It seemed too coincidental for any other explanation.

        • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 5:32 pm #

          See, there are often explanations other than the only one you can think of. Just rmember that when you are sure that the future is dismal – you might just not be seeing it.

      • DrGonzo November 8, 2017 at 10:12 pm #

        Dow 4,500 any day now, huh James? Any. Day. Now.

    • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:02 am #

      You may be right that public comment has outlived its usefulness on here. There is too often an unwillingness to honestly discuss differences of opinion. Instead, some quickly go to accusations and personal attacks.

      There is also a lot of misinformation, hatred and outright racism, especially as the days go on. I’ve quit reading the later posts altogether for that reason.

      • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 10:12 am #

        “There is too often an unwillingness to honestly discuss differences of opinion.”

        –I’m not sure that’s what you’re experiencing here. After all, you seemed to be waiting for the moment right after Jim posted his weekly blog, so you could get in there first. Then you posted, yet again, a bunch of hot air with nothing to back it up. Jim’s book ‘The Long Emergency’ was well written, meticulously researched, and sold quite well. Your little comment doesn’t quite fit that description. You’re basically coming on here, depressing everyone, and subtly calling all of Jim’s regulars idiots.

        How do you expect us to react? And if you’re wondering how your Pollyanna-ish announcements could possibly be depressing?

        Think of it this way – if this hellish ‘modern civilization’ manages to last 20 more years, then say goodbye to countless more species, say goodbye to pretty much all the fish on the ocean. Say goodbye to any decorum or meaning that we all have left, and welcome in a brave new world of tattooed, sick, fat, uneducated oafs, a polluted, trash-filled landscape, and a jackboot on the neck of pretty much everyone who isn’t in the 1%.

        And you’re seriously insane enough to think we’re the pessimists? And you have the nerve to talk down to us, when it appears to most of us that you have no clue what you’re talking about?

        Am I missing something here?

        “Instead, some quickly go to accusations and personal attacks.”

        Ummm, welcome to the internet. Have you heard of it?

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:24 am #

          Conformists like Gray don’t get that some of us here are seriously concerned about the future and unlike him don’t think a random walk through time is the best way to get there. They do not get that rebellious notions are a natural expression of humanity trying to find a better life. They imagine themselves becoming part of the 1% some day and thus have ho interest in the other 99%. They are sociopaths with hearts of ice.

          • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 6:54 pm #

            Unlike Madiba? Champ switched from Communism to Socialism on the eve of the takeover. He would have been Seth Riched otherwise I assume.

        • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:26 am #

          Devon, based on the fourth paragraph of your post I definitely think you are a pessimist.

          I’m okay with the accusations and personal attacks. I had just hoped for better.

          • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 10:29 am #

            Yeah, but you missed something really important (maybe on purpose?). I don’t think that modern civilization can last another 20 years. I fervently hope it will not, for the sake of the future of the human race.

            But as for you, not only do you seem to think that modern civilization can and will last another 20 years, but you appear to be pretty happy about it. Don’t you have any descendants?

            What kind of monster are you?

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:41 am #

            A well paid monster with a Washington DC condo. We are in the midst of extinctions but Graycenphil ignores this. What madness could cause such selective blindness? A paycheck is the only thing I can think of besides serious mental illness.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:44 am #

            I certainly did not miss your belief that modern civilization won’t last 20 years. That is a very pessimistic viewpoint.

            I am indeed very happy that modern civilization will last another 20 years; I’m an optimist. Never in the history of the world has life been so good, for so many people, as it is today, I sincerely hope it will continue, and get better, for my descendants and everybody elses.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:48 am #

            K-dog, facts please. No DC condo (where did that come from??) and I never said we aren’t in the midst of extinctions; in fact I never said anythng extinctions.

            Also gas is not $3.00 and you can charge your electric car at home.

          • devon44 November 6, 2017 at 10:51 am #

            Good Lord – you truly are evil. And blind, it seems. Your statement that life is better for so many people is absolutely breathtaking in its willful ignorance. There is no possible compromise, worthwhile conversation, or meeting of minds for the two of us.

            I wish I could say I’ve enjoyed the conversation, but it gave me chills down my spine that people like you truly exist. I’m not sure if I want Jim to ban you or not. I believe very strongly in freedom of expression, but I don’t know if sociopaths can really contribute to the conversation.

            And if, like K-Dog says, you really are a paid government shill, I’d say you’re doing your job well enough.

            And if you’re not – then why exactly are you wasting your time here? Wouldn’t you have much more fun on some techno-narcissistic site – like maybe Elon Musk’s blog?

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 11:01 am #

            I say the world is so much better for so many people because there is so much less poverty, starvation, slavery, war, pestilence, pollution and cruelty. Not for everyone, of course, but for so many. Why do you feel it is not better?

            Kdog is mostly wrong, and he is about the paid troll thing too.

            I came her for Mr. Kunstler’s writing, I started posting because I was curious whether folks actually believed all the predictions and I enjoy some of the responses. I’m not sure if I’ll stay; I’ve already quit reading the later comments.

            I do like Elon Musk, and his cars and his space program, but I haven’t seen his blog. I am aware he often says things that turn out not to be true.

          • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 11:15 am #

            Graycenphil,

            I’ll try to have the reasoned discussion with you that you feel you’re not getting from others. It’s quite possible that 20 years from now society will look something like you describe. However, it’s quite possible that it will not, and the fact that that possibility is as great as it is really isn’t compatible with your sense of equanimity. It just isn’t. The stakes are too high.

            Society’s current path is not sustainable. People use the word ‘sustainable’ like it’s something touchy-feely and full of granola, but it’s a very hard-headed concept. An unsustainable situation is one that will fail. The failure may not come at a predictable time or in a predictable fashion, but that’s not essential. The key is that nothing has to happen to cause the failure — no nuclear war, no asteroid, no interference from without. All that’s necessary is to carry on doing things the way they’re being done, and the failure is just a matter of time.

            That kind of failure is simply built in when the system requires exponential growth. Everything works fine as long as there is more of everything, from one year to the next, permanently. Since that can’t happen permanently, sooner or later the system must either fail completely or transform into something else — something that doesn’t require exponential growth. Either case renders the world unrecognizable from what it is now. Mors certa, hora incerta — the current system simply will die, though we know not the hour or the manner of death.

            If we want the world you describe to somehow emerge from the death of exponential growth, that implies a massive change in power relations around the globe — something we need to be taking thought for now, we can’t simply assume it. It’s either that, or JHK’s world made by hand, or a return to barbarism. I personally like the perks and amenities of industrial civilization. If not cars, then how about medicines, vaccines and antibiotics? Indoor plumbing and hot running water? So many on this site seem eager to be rid of everything that has made these things possible, but I happen to think that if our current high-tech civilization was worth all those generations fighting to build it, there must be a lot of it that’s worth fighting to keep. So I agree with you in that sense. But we can’t simply ignore problems or assume them out of existence. Like I said, sustainability is hard-headed. It needs to be built, not presumed.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:19 am #

            I’m always amused when you ‘make up’ things you never said.

            I said we are in the midst of extinctions. We all know this is something you will not say as that does not jive with your happy happy joy joy bullshit.

            Where to DC condos come from? People build them and one was built for you.

          • VCS November 6, 2017 at 12:01 pm #

            Phil —

            You really ought to read some of wpa-ccc’s old posts in the archives. Her cornucopian arrogance was breathtaking. You might see yourself there and learn something.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:09 pm #

            Thank you Elrond, that’s refreshing. I’m not sure I disagree with you. I would say that society has been on an unsusatinable path since the first caveman dicovered fire, and we remain on that path. Obviously the earth cannot sustain an infinite number of humans, surely not 100 billion, maybe not 7 billion (though I think it can sustain that many).

            The big difference is that now, for the first time, we are acutely aware of our unsustainablity, and that’s a good thing. That means we are beginning to do what needs to be done to achieve sustainability. It won’t necessarily be easy, but we are awfully clever, resourceful and hardworking. We are beginning to make the changes, and, in fits and starts, will continue to do so. One can’t say for sure that we will make it, but I’m pretty sure we will. I think we have figured it out with enough time to spare.

            The trouble is that many peole confuse awareness with doom. A century ago, there was almost no concept of our limits. Now we are acutely aware of our limits and risks. That is a good thing; it’s what (I think) will driveus to succeeed.

            But not all see it that way. Upon learning of the problems, they just say we’re doomed.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:23 pm #

            Kdog, how can you be so consistantly wrong?

            I didn’t make up anything.

            I have no problem saying that we in the midst of extinctions.

            I don’t live anywhere near DC and I don’t have a condo there.

            Also, nobody from Homeland Security is “gang stalking” you.

          • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 12:32 pm #

            ” A century ago, there was almost no concept of our limits. Now we are acutely aware of our limits and risks. That is a good thing; it’s what (I think) will drive us to succeed.”

            Phil,
            Uhhh, you do know that Thomas Malthus died in 1834…? Please do not confuse your awakening with generations past that held the same knowledge.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 12:54 pm #

            Of course, Malthus was mostly wrong. Our population has increased exponentially, and we are better fed than ever.

            I stand by the statement of almost no concept of our limits a century ago. The goal of almost everybody was growth and expansion. Malthus was clearly the exception.

            There have always been folks predicting our imminent doom. Someday they will be right; so far they’ve all been wrong.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 1:26 pm #

            “Kdog is mostly wrong, and he is about the paid troll thing too.”

            Again, how would he know so why does he say it. He is here to dissemble.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 1:38 pm #

            You ask how would I know? That’s very simple; I would know if I was being paid to be here.

            Any other questions?

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 2:21 pm #

            Here it is Graycenphil. You can deny what I say about you but you don’t stop there. You are continually making claims you can’t substantiate.

            That we might both have better things to do with our lives I’ll let you in on a secret. I’m as interested in what you don’t write, the things you leave out as I am in what you actually say.

            If you are as innocent as you claim you are you have the unfortunate circumstance of having the manner and opinion of government trolls which have been here positively identified with evidence before.

          • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 2:56 pm #

            Graycenphil: “Of course, Malthus was mostly wrong. Our population has increased exponentially, and we are better fed than ever.”

            When you say we are better fed, who are you counting and who are you leaving out? Currently there are famines and/or food crises going on in Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and northeastern Nigeria. Other parts of the world are hardly food secure, either. “In 2016 the number of chronically undernourished people in the world is estimated to have increased to 815 million, up from 777 million in 2015 although still down from about 900 million in 2000.” (Source.)

            Graycenphil: “There have always been folks predicting our imminent doom. Someday they will be right; so far they’ve all been wrong.”

            This hardly justifies passivity. I mean, people keep telling me I won’t live forever; but I haven’t died yet, so why make preparations? Why have life insurance, prepare a will, make funeral arrangements, and so on? It’ll all take care of itself. Except if I look beyond the end of my nose, I realize that others are affected by my choices. So I act.

            Malthus pointed out, completely correctly, what happens when limits are reached and helped us to understand what brings such situations about. You can’t just assume a can opener; you have to make sure.

          • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 3:22 pm #

            Elrond, my point exactly about the undernourishment. There are ups and downs, but we are moving in the right direction. Looking at a longer period, per Wikipedia, in 1970 37% of the less developed world was undernourished; today it is 16%.Even more telling on that point is that we are now talking about undernourishment, not even starvation. It’s far from perfect, but it’s in the right direction.

            Not for a moment do I suggest passivity. On the contrary, we should all be working as hard as we can to correct the problems of the world and improve the future.

            I firmly believe the future will continue to be better than the present. But only if we make it so.

          • benr November 8, 2017 at 10:35 am #

            @anyone talking about people starving in Africa or anywhere else.

            Look up aquaponics then leverage that tech with solar panels and ecoloblue machines.
            All it takes is enough money to buy all the gear a little land to set it up on and you can feed your household no problems.

        • outsider November 6, 2017 at 11:04 am #

          Devon,
          You may find Phil’s comments misguided, but how could they be depressing? They remind me of Pangloss in Voltaire’s “Candide.” Quote: “This is the best of all possible worlds.” What IS depressing is to be a realist in this shit storm, a philosophy which both of us seem to have in common.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:27 am #

            Because childish ignorance is depressing to adults. To be a realist is not depressing. Reality has a way of actually becoming comfortable if you visit enough. But being reminded that ignorance is more comfortable is not pleasant.

        • Rulo Deschamps November 6, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

          Yes! Glad to see Devon wrote exactly what I think. Exactly ever word. What nobody wants to hear. Very likely too, at this point. Crash or no crash, the last tuna will be auctioned soon, & the other stuff will come to pass as well. One cannot obsess over it. One can only live well, avoid TV, farm, get drunk w friends, cherish every moment & do what you can to have a way out if shit happens sooner thatn you’d want or expect. Knowing the way out in not guaranteed to work.

        • Linda November 6, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

          Well said Devon44. I scroll past G&P like I scroll past Janet. Even Janos is better reading that those two.

      • Jeremy November 6, 2017 at 1:38 pm #

        Gray – you think that things have never been better for the average worker.

        “The November jobs report looked pretty good on the surface except for one number that popped off the page: 95 million.

        That’s the number of Americans now counted as not in the labor force, a historic high that has confounded economists and policymakers. The total — 95.06 million to be more exact — has been rising consistently but surged by a gaudy 446,000 last month.”

        cnbc.com/2016/12/02/95-million-american-workers-not-in-us-labor-force.html

        Got that – 95 MILLION NOT IN THE LABOR FORCE !

        You evidently have no clue how desperate the condition of average American is. Combine that with spiralling levels of student and consumer debt.

        Tragic the lack of empathy for the current plight of the average american.

        • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 3:32 pm #

          I’m not sure I would say things have never been better for the average worker. I would say they are better than they were a few years ago, and I would definitely say they are better than they were 50 and 100 years ago.

          I am well aware of the problems many average Americans have, as I am also aware of the opportunites many have. Nobody (not me anyway) is saying things are perfect. But I am saying things are generaly moving in the right direction,and I am certainly saying we are not heading toward TEOTWAWKI. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be trying even harder to make them even better. But it also doesn’t mean we have to proclaim the end of the good life.

          Why you see a tragic lack of empathy in this, I don’t know.

      • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 11:06 am #

        “hatred and outright racism”

        Examples please?

    • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:05 am #

      Walter, ‘These days’ have been going on for over a decade, the beginnings of propaganda trolldom go back to the beginning of clusterfuck nation as do I, the only regular here who can be identified to be be a real human being. This happened 0originally as a result of g-trolls doxing me when I discovered they had all been using the Department of Defense Network to post here. I found that out when it was possible to get the DNS address of comments. here. Once that was possible. An agent of the FBI confirmed my suspicions and I appreciate his kindness. He used to comment here but contacted me off-blog.

      Is JHK behind some of the trolls? Is he a Jekyll and Hyde? Does he get a $600 K a year check for letting his blog be used as a government honey trap? You are not the first to wonder this. As JHK does nothing to solve the troll problem I consider these speculations reasonable but I think the answer is no. JHK has no trouble popping comments he does not like. He removed one of mine as recently as 3 weeks ago when I was being critical of him but I think his selective concern could be financially driven.

      I was writing about bots and shills 10 years ago which caused me to dig into this place and discover the government trolls operating here. JHK used to refer to them as government employees who should be working instead of reading his blog on taxpayer time.

      You can only speak for yourself but regarding this topic consider that you bark for me too.

      • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 10:49 am #

        K-Dog you are a gem. You give a great discussion always and I thank you for that. Yes, I am a real person too, (though I am often told that I am unreal) and this can be verified by visiting our Municipal website for Bethlehem Township, Hunterdon County, NJ. There is only one Walter B on the Committee. There are two truths that I can share with everyone here that cannot be argued. One, the most important issue to every politician (I am an engineer and never a politician) is to do whatever it takes to get re-elected. Two, the primary concern and effort by any government is to control the masses, a responsibility that King George simply forgot. Is the government tuned in here? Of course, they cannot afford NOT to be. But I do feel that our host is honest and liberal (in a good way) and that he values freedom of speech as much as any true partriot would. Thank you again for always being there.

      • PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 10:56 am #

        When I read stuff like this, I think– are the ppl who post on this blog really that important?
        ?

        I guess when I think about it, what would really make me angry is that my tax dollars could be funding some clowns working in our gov’t to sit around and try to use psychological warfare on their own citizens. That pisses me off.

        Like really, get a real job 🙂 LOL

        • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 6:35 pm #

          Janos,
          My check is late again…yours?

          • PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 6:57 pm #

            LOL!

            Every time I read Janos’s posts, I just imagine its Lindsey Graham saying it– and the absurdity becomes pretty too good. 🙂

          • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 7:32 pm #

            I have honed my skills for many years – and there are few now who can best me. Yet still there are no offers to be paid for my services. As George Gayley Simpson said decades ago: the most important work doesn’t make money, but rather, takes it.

            Pete, that just the thing – the Government is against White Nationalism. Haven’t you noticed that? Whites aren’t allowed to have any organizations like the NAACP or ADL. And White Studies? Is it about how great Whites are, like Black, Brown, and Asian studies? No, the opposite – about how horrible we are. Wake up.

      • ozone November 6, 2017 at 11:08 am #

        K-dog,
        Yep. …And it’s instructive to remember that the sacred DOD is the largest employer on the fucking planet! Why *wouldn’t* they psy-op the net to try and control and drown “reality”? It’s only to be expected when fantasy and gagetry are now proven as the best ways to distract from real predicaments (that are only getting worse, BTW). Thank you Madison Ave., you reeking shit-stains.
        *Ruff!*

      • James Howard Kunstler November 6, 2017 at 11:58 am #

        K-Dog–
        I quite resent your supposition that I am being paid big bucks to host trolls on this blog. You have generally been very disrespectful lately, and I’m getting sick of your tone. — JHK

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

          Any disrespect is unintended. I am merely expressing myself honestly.

          Good you have emerged to deny the big bucks supposition. Thank You. The fact is you do have a troll problem and my reacting to it is natural. The accusation of a $600 K payoff was originally advanced by Q-shtick many years ago. He advanced it twice and named that number.

          Have a nice day.

          Thanks again for denying cooperation with your trolls. That gives me the feeling we are finally getting somewhere on that issue. Now that you understand the $600 K figure was advanced by Q you can also understand I mean no disrespect.

          In general I respect you much.

        • kimmasad01 November 6, 2017 at 2:21 pm #

          Mr Kunstler:

          I think he is simply frustrated. These tiems are hard on us all.

          • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 2:22 pm #

            Thank you.

        • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 4:11 pm #

          I am being paid big bucks to host trolls on this blog………………

          What a bizarre statement.

          • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 7:27 pm #

            There’s a great Norwegian movie about Trolls. They’re real. No Troll Hosts though – it would be hard to build a hostel big enough to house them.

        • benr November 8, 2017 at 10:53 am #

          Accusing our host of getting a paycheck from the government is silly at best and down right ignorant.
          It’s public knowledge that there were under funded ($2.8million) programs to steer internet topics away from Anti-American policy viewpoints or what ever their masters decided.

          Alex Jones reported on this many years ago and was made fun and called a Conspiracy theorist as a result.

          While I doubt seriously most sites actually profited directly from operation sock puppet or earnest voice there where/are real programs to have trolls post propaganda all over the internet.
          MSNBC was notably loaded with them and as soon as the funding died most of them went away and the Conservative (common sense) view essentially took over to the point the MSNBC took down their forums. That was the best site to point out how wrong most of their articles were and how wrong the liberal viewpoint always turned out to be. Most people posting on forums don’t need to be paid to Troll the “enemy” aka other side of the political spectrum nor to defend the country they love from foreigners talking smack about it.

          theguardian.com/technology/2011/mar/17/us-spy-operation-social-networks

          It was really going on in overdrive while Obama was in office.

          en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Earnest_Voice

          Consider that many of the “Trolls” simply enjoy the banter.
          One persons troll is another persons perspective that differs from yours.

          Thanks for what you do Mr. Kuntsler.

      • aibohphobia November 9, 2017 at 2:45 am #

        @K-dog said,” I found that out when it was possible to get the DNS address of comments. here. Once that was possible…”
        It might still be possible. Right-clicking on the green “K-dog” above your post and ‘inspecting the element’ gave me a link to your chasingthesquirrel site…

        Have to agree with you about the govt monitoring– The day I decided to take some gold coins out of my safe deposit box, there was a uniformed policeman standing outside the bank when I left. He said something cryptic into his mobile radio, and turned his body to watch me as I went to my car. A nondescript car then followed me from the parking lot to my neighborhood. I took a screwy detour and was followed. I took another screwy detour, and was not followed–but the same car was waiting at the other end of the detour. Driver glared at me, and pulled out from parking on the side of the road to follow me again.

        After that, I found that the tellers at the bank where I had been a client for 25 years became suddenly less friendly when they called up my profile on their monitors. It became impossible for me to wire money to my bank account in Canada–While my mother in law could wire money to her bank account in Canada with no problems, from the same bank!

        This may seem paranoid and coincidental, but I think K-dog knows whereof he speaks, and so do I. It is not actually that difficult to determine whether you are on a USA Patriot watch list. You only have to observe the behavior of bankers and law enforcement folks around you. If they are treating you like a criminal with no apparent cause, its likely that they are being stressed out by some sort of secret court order.

        Things are much better these days–I sold the gold, left the DC area and went to live in Rural Canada. There is absolutely nothing up here to interest the security mavens of DC. No one treats me like a criminal here. If you can get away, I recommend it.

        • Q. Shtik November 9, 2017 at 4:14 pm #

          This may seem paranoid and coincidental – aibohphobia

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

          Yes, you’re right, it does.

          • K-Dog November 10, 2017 at 12:06 am #

            It also figures you would say that. I remember how you and others got your computer. You told me years ago. The claim you made was that all you had to do was visit the list of suppled websites and get involved. Veterans getting free computers. A nice story but I know there is more to it.

    • zizzybalooba November 6, 2017 at 5:28 pm #

      Free speech for everybody but Graycenphil. You’re kidding, right? You and K-Dog sound like titty sucking babies.

      • Graycenphil November 7, 2017 at 11:44 am #

        Thank you. Even he has to be embarrassed by that post.

      • K-Dog November 10, 2017 at 12:07 am #

        Deleting does go on.

  5. robert magill November 6, 2017 at 9:44 am #

    First they came for the silver; out of the green-backs in 60’s. Then they came for the gold; ditto 70’s. That wasn’t enough so then they came for the paper; not enough paper green-backs to give $100 to everybody entitled who asks.So all that’s left now when they come again are the virtual IOUs; lot’s of them. Happy thanksgiving, turkeys.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 9:50 am #

      Then they came for the citizens, I was not one so I didnt give a f—.

    • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 9:52 am #

      I am seeing more progress in the RF chip movement which would seem to be a logical successor to the cyber currency idea don’t you think? Microsoft and their 5G system may be a big step in this direction. I cannot be argued that these items are not on the table and as the debt/financial situation deteriorates, I cannot help to think that RF will be introduced as a “reset”. Ask Joe Biden…

      youtube.com/watch?v=sUByhFfxvao

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:11 am #

        eye scans will be the newer chip?

        • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 10:33 am #

          It is a actual possibility and there arte those who are pushing it.

      • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 7:34 pm #

        Remember, those who get the chip in their foreheads or the back of their hands will not ever see God.

  6. KK November 6, 2017 at 9:51 am #

    “(front-end-loaders, pepperoni sticks, oil drilling rigs).”

    Don’t forget the Cheez Doodles!!!

    🙂

  7. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 9:51 am #

    Gracenphil – let us look back 20 years and see what the student loan numbers were, let us look at middle class incomes, let us look at the labor participation rates, let us look at middle class white high school students and their ability to score highly enough on the ACT to get into any local junior college or state college. Let us look at these standards in today’s world. No we won’t be entering into a long emergency we are there now, the reality is just not evenly distributed.

    Perhaps the world is as rosy for you as your posts imply. Purposeful ignorance is not ignorance at all. Please cruise by the AutomaticEarth today and read the post directed to an article about student debt by Matt Taibbi. You might have yours now and you have stated that you believe you are prepared for most anything.

    Once while discussing the state of our society with my dentist I opined that “Ignorance is bliss” doc Matkowski replied ” no it is not, how many happy people do you know?”

    • KK November 6, 2017 at 9:58 am #

      I think they “think” they are happy. Or, maybe they don’t know what happiness is? What IS happiness, anyway?

      😉

      At least they have freedumb.

    • FincaInTheMountains November 6, 2017 at 9:58 am #

      Hey, 20 years back I was 20 year younger!

    • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 10:36 am #

      There is no doubt that graduates owe too much iin student loans (though some of the fault there clearly lies with the students), that middle class incomes (and lower class too, for that matter) should be higher, and we would all like better schools for our kids. Those are problems we are all aware of, and I’m confidant they will improve. But that does not put us in a long emergency. That just gives us some problems we have to deal with. There is a big difference.

      • martydav November 6, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

        “[I offer] honest opinions, based on facts and history.”

        Also – gas…[is] not $3.00 now and it probably won’t be $4.00 soon.

        “[I’d hoped for] more intellectual discussion.”
        – Mr. Graycenphil

        Time out!

        As has been implied above, your reference to The Long Emergency: Surviving the End of Oil, Climate Change, and Other Converging [converging: that’s “coming together with”–please fasten your intellectual on now–it’s grown up time] Catastrophes of the 21st Century (2005) is an important tell. Once you’ve worked up a credible critique of Mr. Kunstler’s cognitive gift of 12 years ago, please sit down (!) with Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology, and the Fate of the Nation (2012). It’s time, and here will be a test–can you say: “distinction between technology and energy”?

        By the way, I took about 20 steps out of my Seattle door, and here is some “facts and history” I see on the Spirit station sign next door:

        $3.39 9/10 – Regular
        $3.89 9/10 – Unleaded
        $4.24 9/10 – Premium

        But perhaps you’ve “stopped reading.”

        “Irony upon irony upon irony>” (Herman Melville)

        • Graycenphil November 6, 2017 at 4:51 pm #

          One overpriced gas staion in Seattle does not change the average national gas price, which is $2.50. Nor does it change the cost of energy, which was where that discussion started. And even in Seattle, it’s not hard to find gas price closer to the average than to your station.

          I have no idea what the rest of your post is talking about.

          • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:03 am #

            Hey Jerry Brown has once again stuck it to the California driver with yet another .13 cent tax on gas .19 on diesel and $175 on car registration!
            Where will the money go?
            Well he says to fix the roads but what we already had 18 cents a gallon going to fix the roads!!!
            Where has all that money gone?
            Some would say into the Welfare state racket of importing more voters for Democrats of course.
            They say they are for the little man but who is really HURT by the increases of transporting goods and services?
            The little guy of course as everything will start spiking next spring when the summer blend of gas is reintroduced!
            Democrats suck only to be followed by the de-balled rino class Republicans!

    • martydav November 6, 2017 at 1:28 pm #

      Thanks for the student loan racket reference. The link to Taibbi’s Rolling Stone article is actually under the Sunday, 11-5 entry on the AutomaticEarth site.

      Mr. Kunstler’s podcast (currently listed on his home page) conversation with Richard Fossey on the student loan crisis deserves a wide audience. Financial terrorism. Period.

    • benr November 8, 2017 at 10:57 am #

      My friend you simply point out the cost of government getting involved!
      College loans have the full backing and trust of the American people and your tax dollars so what COULD go wrong?
      Of course costs skyrocket!
      A friend ofmines daughter has college loans to the tune of over 1k a month and at 23 is struggling to pay her way through life fund her two daughters and survive at all.

      Now consider Government involved in the Health care racket! My insurance costs have tripled since that moron Obama pushed for health care overhauls and government intrusions.

      Hey Obama you still suck.

  8. DrTomSchmidt November 6, 2017 at 10:01 am #

    unemployment is not historically low, it’s simply mis-represented by not including the tens of millions of people who have dropped out of the work force. And an epic wickedness combined with cowardice drives the old legacy news business to look the other way and concoct its good times “narrative.”

    It really is insulting. The employment rate took a dive in 2007, plunged under 60%, and has recently nudged up against the underside of that. It will likely NEVER return to 64%, and no one seems to mention that.

    • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:13 am #

      I was one of those who ‘dropped out of the work force’ after enough time and with my unemployment gone I did not exist. Few make like Lazarus and come back from the dead once they have been out of work for a long time. I was one of the lucky few.

      The ridiculous notion that if you have not been working for a while you don’t want a job is alive and well in America.

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:21 am #

        So do you live on savings?

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:28 am #

          My savings were down to $1000 before I was able to find re-employment. I’m happy to say I have worked my pile of bones back up to my own pre-unemployment levels and beyond. A good job and the understanding it can all go away tomorrow as it has before motivates me to be a super-saver.

          • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 11:33 am #

            To be a realist is not depressing.

            Maybe not for you, for others, I am not so sure.

            Prepare for the worst, it may happen.

      • oilie November 6, 2017 at 11:41 am #

        The reason that many folks don’t want jobs is that there is a very large safety net consisting of SS disability, SNAP, etc. Jobs that offer no long term security don’t appeal to them. They aren’t getting rich and probably could do better with a job, but the incremental gain isn’t worth the trouble. That is what I see in my neighborhood. The official unemployment rate is low, but several of my neighbors haven’t worked in eight years and are not looking.

        • TPTB-USA November 7, 2017 at 12:20 am #

          The welfare concoction is a grand experiment in an attempt to avoid the game reset. What seems to be ignored is that this is at the expense of morality.

          There is a great deal of satisfaction to be gained by paying your dues in life. A neighbor lady has a saying “I am blessed with work” (she had cancer and is lucky to be alive).

        • sharonsj November 7, 2017 at 5:29 pm #

          I have four friends living on SS disability. One is in an institution. The others subsist on monthly payments that average $750. Food stamps vary according to state; a friend with kidney failure gets $150 a month. Every one of them has serious medical problems and would be dead without government assistance. None of them can hold a job. Broad statements insinuating that these folks aren’t interested in working is complete nonsense.

          As for the unemployment numbers, everyone knows they are a joke. One-third of working Americans are unemployed because decent jobs are scarce and also depend on where you live. On the other hand, many are being sustained by the underground economy (and I consider that their ‘job”).

        • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:06 am #

          Drive by any decent surf break in California during the week and watch the chaos of hundreds of people with no job just surfing all the time.
          \Meanwhile fools like me work 40+ hours a week and still have to deal with these fools on the weekend!

    • ozone November 6, 2017 at 12:10 pm #

      Dr. Tom,
      On unemployment numbers and gov’t ‘figures’ by the BLS (they should just leave out the ‘L’ in their acronym):

      “…today, the middle class is being ripped to shreds and according to one new report there are 49 million Americans that are dealing with food insecurity in 2014.

      How can anyone not see what is happening to us? America is in the midst of a long-term economic decline, but the mainstream media and most of our politicians seem to think that things are better than ever. They continue to try to convince us that “business as usual” is the right path to take.

      But one-fifth of the families in the entire nation are already totally unemployed.

      At what point will we finally admit that what we are doing right now is simply not working?
      30 percent of all families unemployed?
      40 percent?
      50 percent?

      If we stay on the road that we are on now, things are going to continue to get worse. Millions more jobs will be shipped overseas, millions more jobs will be replaced by technology and crippling government regulations will kill millions more jobs. The middle class will continue to shrink and government dependence will continue to rise.”
      …and…
      “The government tells us that the official unemployment rate is about 7 percent, but that number is almost meaningless at this point.

      A number that I find much more useful is the employment-population ratio. According to the employment-population ratio, the percentage of working age Americans that actually have a job has been below 59 percent for more than four years in a row… That means that more than 41 percent of all working age Americans do not have a job.”
      — Michael Snyder

      Well, there we go; tens of millions. No lie.

      • martydav November 6, 2017 at 6:27 pm #

        Thanks Ozone,

        Here’s a link to a page for Morningside Hill Capital Management, which includes a link to one of their studies you may have seen,
        THE US JOBS MARKET: MUCH WORSE THAN THE OFFICIAL DATA SUGGEST:

        morningsidehill.com/the-us-jobs-market/

        I was trained to avoid cliches, but the article’s critique of BLS’s statistical…STATISTICAL!!…methods (here it is again, the cliche and the experience) beggars belief.

  9. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 10:02 am #

    Anyone heard from JiminFlorida lately? Many here showed disdain for his trademarked solution because it was not according to Hoyle.

    Success at any game comes from a thorough understanding of the rules. One of the most succinct ways of expressing this thought is – Don’t take a knife to a gun fight.

    At this point is history anyone who believes that the Marquess of Queensberry Rules are in play is something other than naive.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:15 am #

      He posted some interesting facts.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 7:37 pm #

      He said goodbye. He felt he was going to be banned so apparently, decided not to wait for it to happen. Jim was for the White Race too he must be a Government Agent, right?

  10. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 10:09 am #

    Walter B
    Could you give us a brief outline of the status of the pensions and public employment costs where you have your boots on the ground? In Florida the state manages the system, interested to know what you have learned about such things.
    wm

    • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 10:32 am #

      The NJ State pension fund was seriously depleted, though Chris Christie made some payments in his time. I am not sure what state they are in today, but my brother who now collects his pension from the NJSP is always wary that he will be notified of problems or reductions at any time now. A friend and co-worker who is a retired Montclair fireman was told at his meeting/picnic this Summer that if the members of this union (the 55k police & firemen) want to keep their pensions they would have to vote for Murphy tomorrow. They were also notified that they were all being charged $30 a paycheck for the PAC that was set up to pay the sellouts in Trenton about $1.5M a month in “donations”. Our fully funded local pensions are ok, but rising in cost as workers retire ASAP. Scuttlebutt has it that Murphy is not only guaranteed as the next governor, but hat he is planning on cutting or eliminating our State. The amount that our Township receives is $400K on a $2.7M total budget. Cutting aid and not renewing the 2/3-1/2% cap would allow or force us to dramatically increase taxes. I have presented my 2018 Debt Payoff plan to my Committee but everything hinges on tomorrow’s results. It ain’t getting better here, I can assure you of that.

      • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 10:33 am #

        eliminating our State aid that is.

  11. PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 10:16 am #

    So it sounds like from the article there that we are in an economy that is not too indifferent from, let’s say, Soviet Russia’s under Stalin. Everything is just made up and distorted for public consumption.

  12. malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:20 am #

    For BR Heckler and Qstick,

    There’s an unfortunate line in the New Jersey state constitution that guarantees a good education for all. Which means that money is taken from the state at large and given to poor districts. Of course it wasn’t enough to equalize funding between poor and rich school districts because the monkeys still didn’t learn anything. So, the special districts got more funding until they received double the funding of the other districts (and a multiple of the funding successful schools get in low tax rural western states).

    Last year, a new Newark high school opened. It cost a billion dollars!

    and

    A local election kerfluffle near here in Edison, New Jersey over “racist election flyers” sent out about the school board election. The pictures of a Chinese candidate and an Indian candidate stamped with a “DEPORT” logo. “Enough is enough. Chinese school! Indian school!
    Cricket fields! Make Edison great again!”

    Edison is now 25% foreign born. The Indians were smart to plant their colony in Edison because it was a rundown slurb just safe enough from concentrations of black people but with lots of working class housing and great infrastructure. You can get to Manhattan in 35 minutes from the Edison Metropark train station.

    Indians have flown under the radar around here mainly because they are not dangerous.
    Oh…they’re annoying if you’re stuck behind one at the checkout line, trying to save on ridiculous non-applicable coupons and whatnot. But they won’t cut your throat on the street.
    Black people have noticed that as well and so their criminal predator class considers them weak, with predictable results. There were some home invasions in Edison last year when the groids noticed that they keep money and jewels in their apartments. And around here the old retired Indians hanging around the park were rousted out by black junior high school kids.

    We are all relieved that election board is investigating the incident. And the Indian community leaders, who have learned to whine with the best of the victim class, want a criminal hate crime investigation.

    and

    WHAT ABOUT THE LATEST SERIES OF MASS KILLINGS? False flags?

    • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:30 am #

      Expect an email from JHK telling you not to shout.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 10:38 am #

      WHAT ABOUT THE LATEST SERIES OF MASS KILLINGS? False flags?

      Haven’t heard the details yet, so I couldn’t even speculate. But my rule of thumb these days is to assume that every major “terror event” is at least Dark Ops facilitated until proven otherwise, so I guess you can classify that as false flag as well. Another good rule of thumb is that when you see obvious clusters of these kind of large scale events, as we have lately, you’re probably witnessing facilitated events.

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 11:25 am #

        some of the alleged killers info is scrubbed–he was antifa.

      • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 1:07 pm #

        They want our guns, and they will continue to pull these until they get it. Jesus it’s the frequency; it’s almost weekly now. Opioids are now killing 165 Americans a day. That’s a 9/11 every 20 days. I just watched “Hell or Highwater” and I got to say it was a pretty good rid.

        • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 4:31 pm #

          As I said last week, something big appears to be in the wind. A holiday surprise just for us! Could be most anything that they need have a docile populace prepped for.

        • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 9:01 pm #

          And you’re a Hillary a supporter, right? Right?! Alas poor Seth. Alas poor Donna too perhaps.

          • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:09 am #

            Seems when ever news comes out that Hillary is being investigated something bad like this always happens!

      • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 1:46 am #

        The Las Vegas shooting is eerie. I don’t think that was facilitated by the people who bought us the Boston Bombing. They only panned on four people being an excusable sacrifice before it happened and there was a clear political aim. Make Americans hate Moslems. Headquarters must have been in glee when the right number were killed and the bombs performed exactly as planned.

        A political motivation seems missing in the Las Vegas Shootings and the death toll seems too high for a planned black op. I think it really is a crazy man here. But who could tell who was really firing the shots. Black ops could easily have done the shooting and left the body found as a dead patsy.

        But idea that American block ops would take out 50 at a time seems crazy to me.

    • Q. Shtik November 6, 2017 at 9:20 pm #

      It’s Q. Shtik, Mouth-us.

  13. PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 10:23 am #

    startribune.com/homeless-explosion-on-west-coast-pushing-cities-to-the-brink/455479433/

    Good article about how the lack of affordable housing is impacting working ppl on the West Coast.

    How the ppl on the West Coast can make it financially, is wayyy beyond me.

    • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 10:34 am #

      Beyond me too and I live here. My own situation is that I live in a paid off house so I’m OK. A relative has a son who just moved out into a one bedroom apartment with his girlfriend. $1600 a month and he makes just over $40K in salary. Working those numbers I’m glad I am not him, though by choice I am as frugal.

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 10:38 am #

        Maybe sell the house and move. Buy a small farm.

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:36 am #

          I like that idea but acquiring more bones is my top priority right now. Walking away from a much better than average job does not seem like a great idea. Selling the house does not make sense as long as work in Seattle is still good for Mrs.Dog and I. We still need a place to live as long as we work here.

          Thank you for the suggestion.

      • PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 10:43 am #

        geez, that’s crazy That’s like 60% of his income just on rent. Sounds like extortion, to me.

        • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 11:26 am #

          rent and taxes.
          car payments.
          student loan payments.
          food at 200-400 a month, per mouth.

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:37 am #

          Sounds like Seattle to me!

          • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 3:44 pm #

            many coastal cities–but few that are not coastal.

            austin might be a fly over w crazy rents.

        • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:40 am #

          Now you know why $15 an hour is the minimum wage in Seattle and why for most here $15 an hour does not cut it.

          And yes, he has student loans. Fortunately only about $30 K worth.

          • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 3:59 pm #

            I get emails from Seattle saying its ruined. The only big businesses are the 2 BIG ones.
            Place is heroin addicts and anti government politicians.

  14. pequiste November 6, 2017 at 10:37 am #

    Jerome “Jay” Powell the Trump nominee for the Federal Reserve chair?

    Shocked I tell you, shocked!

    Not a Havad man! Not Jewish! Not a Goldman Sachs alumni!

    What is this world coming too.

    OK , OK; he’s an Ivy Leaguer, investment banker, with roots at the Carlyle Group (the largest private equity fund in the world.) Can you say leveraged buyouts? Enough connections with the Evil Bastards that no doubt he gets those phone calls from the secretary of the agent for Rothschildz and Rockefellerz to get their job done.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 10:41 am #

      Think this might have had something to do with it?

      “Based on public filings, Powell’s net worth is estimated to be as much as $112 million.[2][3] He is the richest member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.[23]”

      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerome_Powell

  15. Sheaps November 6, 2017 at 10:39 am #

    Dang, I thought we were rid of Phil the Troll from NYC. I don’t think he is mendacious individually, he is just infected with the myth of Progress as are many other (mostly upper-class/city dwelling) Americans. Phil left out in his predictions that the New York sewers and tunnels will likely be flooded from sea level rise, if we’re going out decades here.

    It’s called the “Long” Emergency. It may take a good while to pan out, but believers in the Myth will trumpet the good news of eternal Progress until we get some better form of cultural mythology installed. I just wish I didn’t have to read it – that is in fact why I still read this blog. JHK definitely has a soft spot for the city and New York in particular, maybe this deepens his enjoyment of Phils point of view?

  16. Bro Jobe November 6, 2017 at 10:42 am #

    “What could possibly go wrong?”

    Everything, and all at once. That seems to be the American Way now.

    As for this: “unemployment is not historically low, it’s simply mis-represented by not including the tens of millions of people who have dropped out of the work force.”

    YES. The unemployment figures also do not represent the real human suffering of the underemployed or those stuck in low-wage slavery or “at will” employment that, in a more robust economy, they’d escape.

    The TV in our building just flashed “Shooter fired from job at Water Park.”

    No offense to anyone in that business, but that’s a job for a high-school kid, not an adult trying to make a real living. And though it probably did not trigger our latest massacre, how many people in dead-end jobs can walk out, plop down a credit card, and pick up an AR and a 1000-round can of .223 ammo, then march out to repeat the recent massacres?

    Plenty. And that is only part of what could go wrong, and will.

    • outsider November 6, 2017 at 11:46 am #

      Reminds me of the quote from Hemingway’s “The Sun also Rises.”

      “How did you go bankrupt?” Bill asked.
      “Two ways,” Mike said, “gradually then suddenly.”

    • SteveO November 8, 2017 at 2:08 pm #

      “No offense to anyone in that business, but that’s a job for a high-school kid, not an adult trying to make a real living.”

      When my kids got be about 15 I started looking for jobs I could direct them into. All the jobs my friends and I did when we were in high school were being done by adults. Even the vendors selling hot dogs at the local AA ball park were in their 30s.

  17. peakfuture November 6, 2017 at 10:52 am #

    Twenty years is a long time. 25 years ago, it was the ‘End of History’, and the dot-com bubble was just starting to get going. The Internet and all associated stuff was a fraction of what it is now.

    9/11 hadn’t happened; that changed how we fly, we bank, and how we travel. If someone lets loose a nuke someplace, a place like New York or Detroit will be essentially uninhabitable.

    In twenty years, there’s a good chance we won’t have ice in the arctic, and that won’t be trivial. Access to fresh water isn’t trivial. Losses to the Ogallala aquifer between 2001 and 2011 equated to a third of its cumulative depletion during the entire 20th century. When that goes, that’s going to cause problems.

    The book The Water Knife has a pretty good take on how things might go. I don’t think we’ll see the future that Gracycenphil touts, nor will we see Mad Max.

    Who has made the best predictions 20 years from 1937? From 1957? From 1977? Or in any 20 year timeframe?

    Cheap oil has given us a good deal of ever increasing progress, population, and technological complexity. Predictions 20 years from now are a tricky business. At best, one has to prepare for a variety of crazy-to-us-now futures.

    • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:38 pm #

      Nobody saw the internet coming, that’s what makes the future so unpredictable. Lot’s of people saw out sourcing coming, and here we are.

    • Elrond Hubbard November 6, 2017 at 12:48 pm #

      Yup, Paolo Bacigalupi FTW.

    • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 1:30 am #

      Thanks for the book suggestion.

  18. PeteAtomic November 6, 2017 at 11:00 am #

    I just hope that when the US dissolves, and I think it will eventually– is that it is slow enough to avoid too much bloodshed. A gradual or step by step process of devolution of power and unity from the DC Swamp, would be best, imho.

    • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:20 pm #

      It’ll dissolve the same way the USSR went. My guess is that it will fracture into five or six pieces. Hell we may even see the South rise again.

  19. amb November 6, 2017 at 11:15 am #

    What Mr. K is missing is that we are no longer on the gold standard. That has become obsolete. Thinking on those terms is now irrelevant and unworkable. Thus, positing a collapse is an erroneous assumption that will leave him with egg on his face.

    We are in a new financial paradigm. This government is the monopoly creator of its currency. It can print as much as it deems necessary. The national debt isn’t a debt… it is a huge savings account, a place where everyone can keep their money (individuals, businesses, sovereign wealth funds, etc.). It’s wealth, an asset, not a debt. And it is all in USD. We don’t owe money to China or any of this nonsense, the US doesn’t have any debt in a foreign currency.

    This financial/monetary/fiscal construct (right or wrong) can continue on for a very very long time. Look at Japan.

    • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:53 pm #

      China is the wild card in this, and they are nipping on our heels now. I doubt they will continue as second fiddle for much longer. Last century was America’s; this one will be Russia, India and China’s. The financial paradigm you speak of has existed since 1913. That was the year that Woodrow Wilson gave us the Federal Reserve.

      • CancelMyCard November 7, 2017 at 3:38 pm #

        “Last century was America’s; this one will be Russia, India and China’s.”

        And guess which three nations are the worlds biggest buyers of gold . . .

        Bingo.

    • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 12:55 pm #

      @ amb

      “We are in a new financial paradigm.”

      We are, indeed. Modern Monetary Theory will work, but only if the authorities have the power to enforce it.

      More power in fewer hands.

      What could possibly go wrong?

    • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 1:00 pm #

      “We are in a new financial paradigm. This government is the monopoly creator of its currency”

      Amb,

      A new paradigm? Please tell me where in history when a sovereign state did not do so? There is nothing new in debasement. The results will not be surprising…or different than the lessons that history provides.

      • amb November 7, 2017 at 1:47 am #

        elysianfield: Back in history it was the gold standard and there were fixed instead of floating currencies. You don’t see the change. There isn’t any debasement (that can only happen when money is backed by gold, land or some other commodity). How do you debase electronic debits and credits? This isn’t a gold standard, no one is shaving off pieces of the coinage. Less than 5% of or our “currency” is cash and coins… it is all credit, created by banks (digits on banks computers, including the Federal Reserve’s computers). Credit ebbs and flows… debt are paid off, new loans are made, round and round we go. The money supply can be expanded or contracted at any time. Congress orders US Treasury, US Treasury orders the Fed Reserve, Federal Reserve orders its member banks. Round and round we go.

        • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 11:14 am #

          Amb,
          Yes, I understand this, but it has always been an eventuality that currency becomes debased one way or another. Bitcoin? 21 Million units? Lets make it 42! Who will make that decision? Will you be consulted?

    • BuckP November 6, 2017 at 11:55 pm #

      We’ll print as long as the dollar is the world’s reserve currency and the excess dollars are taken out of the country via the drug trade. The Taliban prior to 2001 had wiped out a high percentage of the poppy fields. After the invasion, opium production was back at an all time high. That is why we are there! American soldiers were forced to guard the fields. We had had better hope our one trillion a year military force keeps intimidating the BRICS and the rest of the world or the dollar’s hegemony is up.

      • Ron Anselmo November 7, 2017 at 9:08 am #

        Buck, you are correct. If not mistaken, the pre-invasion crop was down to around 85 metric tons, due to the Taliban. Post invasion, the crop had increased to 6200 metric tons, as you state, under the watchful eye of the US military. Sort of laid waste to the MSM propaganda that the Taliban was supported by the drug trade.

  20. volodya November 6, 2017 at 11:23 am #

    I think it was Malthus who asked last week when is the crash going to happen. It’s like predicting when a school of fish will zig and when it will zag. Right now the investment community school of fish, essentially the one percent, are zigging.

    In this zig, markets zig alongside in part propelled by Fed-provided money-meth but also by greed and stupidity. No matter their pretensions to great prescience and mentat-like computational speed, these guys aren’t all that bright.

    But as we saw in 2008-09 and in 2000 it stops when the school of fish zags.

    Consider that the manufacturing backbone of the US was relocated to a failed state to the south and to a shitty despotism overseas. The resulting unworkable global economic system makes a zag inevitable.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 11:27 am #

      Bitcoin near 8k.

      Yes, I ask ‘when’–thanks, my friend.

  21. peakfuture November 6, 2017 at 11:29 am #

    Yes, the 2008 near crash (and, the 1994 LTCM issue) were quite the close calls.

    How many times can we do this?

    What would it look like if the ATMs shut off? Would BTC go to 100K? Or would it be useless?

    So much hinges on infrastructure; water, shelter, electricity, security. When those things go, especially over a large region, all bets are off. This is why considering multiple crazy futures seems warranted. Investing in yourself (and your health), your family and your community looks like a good idea.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 11:38 am #

      If the PTB want Bcoin at a million, it will go there.
      And then the PTB can shut off the power. No PC, no BC trades.

      • volodya November 6, 2017 at 12:07 pm #

        And, even if they deliberately don’t shut off the power, elites on the Republican side, obsessed with how pious and principled they are, like Jeff Flake, or on the Democratic side too busy painting party rooms for the LGBTQ and other victimized and marginalized communities, neglect to maintain the power system. And down the fucking thing goes.

    • volodya November 6, 2017 at 11:53 am #

      The trick is to believe your own eyes and listen to the accounts of people you trust because you can’t believe the mendacious sacks of shit in the Washington-Manhattan Axis.

      If you’re young you don’t have the benefit of the perspective times past. Businesses in huge swathes of the US interior employed vast numbers of American men that went to work everyday carrying lunch pails. Every shift change was signalled by the wail of the factory siren and the town lived by its dictates. But it was a decent living. One working man’s salary could support a family.

      No more though. The bi-coastal glitterati pour scorn on those days, on the one hand saying that working people didn’t deserve such a good living because of their educational and attitudinal deficiencies.

      Or, on the other hand, and in direct contradiction, scoff at the notion that such times even existed. Well, they did.

      As you ask, how many crack-ups can happen before there’s no reassembly possible. Never mind economic depression and financial fragility, what about the state of decrepetating infrastructure? Republicans don’t want to pay tax, Democrats are too busy preening and posturing about how wonderful and intelligent they are. Meanwhile it all goes to shit.

      • ozone November 6, 2017 at 12:48 pm #

        V.,
        Hey, didn’t your hear? We’re in the “service” and “financialization” economy now! It’s working out great… just look at the stock market!
        We deal in dreams now; who needs real jobs making real things?
        /s off

    • outsider November 6, 2017 at 12:07 pm #

      Last night “60 Minutes” had a segment on the devastation of Puerto Rico after its head on collusion with Maria. Their infrastructure has been destroyed. The experts said it will be months before power is restored to the entire island, and years before it returns to its pre-hurricane state, if indeed it ever does. In the meantime tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans are flocking to the US. They are US citizens so no passport or green card needed. Their governor said that, if the US does not provide more help, even more will leave and probably never return. Doubtless, with climate change, there will be more such hurricanes in our future.

      • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:18 pm #

        Great. Let’s see how Trump handles that. In the end Puerto Rico might be the first victim of climate change. They won’t be the last.

      • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 12:26 pm #

        “Their infrastructure has been destroyed.”

        I’ve worked and traveled in PR. I would argue that the problem was not the level of destruction, but the level of the pre-existing infrastructure and the culture that supported it.

        They were barely above third-world level to begin with.

        • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:16 am #

          Yep I spent three weeks in Puerto Rico and I can attest it was as third world as all the places I visited on my Navy Unitas cruise.

      • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 9:12 pm #

        Bring them all here and give it to Whites: we’ll make that green hell bloom.

  22. venuspluto67 November 6, 2017 at 12:09 pm #

    I think most people are unwilling to recognize the vaporous nature of this year’s financial market hypertrophy, because that would mean recognizing that we would now be in full deflationary compression without those monthly infusions from the Japanese, European, and Swiss central banks. And of course, that’s exactly why I keep harping on it. If it takes truckloads and truckloads of printed money to make it seem like everything is just fine, then everything is assuredly not “just fine”.

  23. seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:10 pm #

    Everything that America has rests firmly on the petrodollar, which rests firmly on the fact that America has the reserve currency of the world. That is very much in question now that China has surpassed us in purchasing power and soon pass us in GDP. That always involves war. The next few years will be tricky. China wants to be the big dog. America’s military isn’t ready for this. They are used to bullying, and that won’t work anymore.

    • ozone November 6, 2017 at 12:55 pm #

      seawolf,
      Saudi vs. Iran — The proxy war consummation devoutly to be wished (by the psychopaths in charge). As Israel has stuck its air wing into the mix, this has got more momentum than those of us paying attention would like.

  24. Epicur November 6, 2017 at 12:16 pm #

    It became obvious to me in early 2016, when the stock market was poised at the edge of the abyss and the European Central Bank unleashed a flood of “stimulus,” that the stock market will not fall until (and unless) the Central Banks that are coordinating the expansion of credit decide that it should or must fall.

    If it is allowed to fall that will not be the trigger for the collapse of society, but the opportunity of a lifetime. The bloated population of the world is completely dependent on the functioning of the “global economy” for its daily bread, therefore the global economy will continue to function by hook and/or crook until it no longer can overcome the forces of nature tearing at it and tearing at the population level that demands it.

    For a look into the future at the irresistible force that will bring the temple down read the following article in “Foreign Policy” magazine:

    foreignpolicy.com/2016/08/24/zika-is-just-the-first-front-in-the-21st-century-biowar/

    As the article intimates, access to biotechnology will likely be uncontrollable in the near future and therefore available to non-state actors with all sorts of agendae. The more that states clamp down on “terrorists” and other non-state actors to control the problem the higher the pressure on the system will rise.

    When the attacks begin the only thing that advanced societies will be able to do is analyze and react to attacks with vaccines after plagues begin. There are large segments of the population that are most vulnerable to plagues. This is true on both a national level and a global level. As horrible as it will be, the deaths of billions is the only thing that will lower the pressure on the system. Then life could go on as Phil envisions.

    As the poet Robinson Jeffers said:

    “Reason will not decide at last: the sword will decide. ”

    poemhunter.com/best-poems/robinson-jeffers/contemplation-of-the-sword/

    • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 12:31 pm #

      This: “When the attacks begin the only thing that advanced societies will be able to do is analyze and react to attacks with vaccines after plagues begin.”

      Should be this: When the attacks begin the only thing that advanced societies will be able to do, beyond playing “Whack-a-mole” with the terrorists, is analyze and react to attacks with vaccines after plagues begin.

      They will most certainly continue playing “Whack-a-mole.”

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 12:33 pm #

      1994, 2000, 2008-9. 2016.

      cats got 5 lives, at least.

    • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 1:07 pm #

      “As the article intimates, access to biotechnology will likely be uncontrollable in the near future and therefore available to non-state actors with all sorts of agendae. The more that states clamp down on “terrorists” and other non-state actors to control the problem the higher the pressure on the system will rise.

      Epicure,
      Phil feels otherwise….

      • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 1:14 pm #

        @ elysianfield

        “Phil feels otherwise….”

        Yeah. I didn’t mean we would see the future he predicts, just that a fairly good technological human future is possible, only after a rather circuitous and painful route.

    • venuspluto67 November 6, 2017 at 11:02 pm #

      The purpose of the never-ending money-printing shindig is, in my evaluation, to facilitate the extraction of the final dregs of abundant world resources. The global economic system is just so energy- and resource-intensive at this point that I can’t imagine that this will be terribly far into the future. I can even see the whole mess starting to sputter as soon as 2019.

      • venuspluto67 November 7, 2017 at 10:07 am #

        meant to say I can’t imagine that “endgame” will be terribly far into the future.

  25. ozone November 6, 2017 at 12:30 pm #

    Disasters and Crises as ‘contributors’ to the GDP; a most interesting perspective and [part] answer to the ballooning stock “market”:

    counterpunch.org/2017/11/03/the-cruel-topsy-turvy-economics-of-collapse/

    “…this apparent disconnect between economics and society’s well-being arises from the use of GDP as the benchmark of economic success. GDP merely measures the rate at which our society is transforming nature and human activities into the monetary economy, regardless of the ensuing quality of life. Anything that causes economic activity of any kind, whether good or bad, adds to GDP.”

    Oopsie. Let in the light; it’s a good delusion vanquisher.

  26. volodya November 6, 2017 at 12:31 pm #

    Venuspluto, of course it’s not just fine.

    The central banks insist in their great wisdom that they’re on the one hand balancing supply of credit with aggregate demand. On the other hand they say they’re deliberately suppressing rates so as to avoid collapse.

    But, no matter which way it is, interest rates are the blood pressure of the economy and if you have zero or near zero rates you have a moribund economy with dangerously low blood pressure.

    In no reasonable man’s mind is this situation “just fine” no matter if this is the deliberate result of central bank policy, or the result of the working of the money markets.

  27. seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

    The petrodollar is being vanquished as we speak. Saudi Arabia is the lynch pin. They are moving away from the dollar since the fracking boom. China now buys more oil than America. They have no reason to be loyal to America.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 4:09 pm #

      They have no reason to be loyal to America.

      Bombs?

  28. erik November 6, 2017 at 12:52 pm #

    Graycenphil seems kinda Leibnizian in his view of things.
    Predicting the future is not so easy and we know that the world of today is more like the world of 50 years ago than the world forecast by the predictions bandied about in 1967.
    But the next 20 years could be shaped by forces leading to a different outcome.
    Graycenphil assumes the geopolitical dynamics will remain the same and things in America will continue on their trajectory. But what if they change? What if America’s trajectory is analogous to that of a rocket whose fuel has burned out, but remains on the upward leg of a ballistic curve? If that turns out to be true as JHK says, then in the next few decades America will lose the benefits of Dollar Hegemony. That could change the face of things dramatically and result in a cascade failure of things we’ve taken for granted.
    I tend towards the view that America’s struggle with rising powers is one she is as doomed to lose as was Britain’s in the first half of the 20th. century, but unlike Britain we don’t have a robust lineal descendant to cushion our fall from grace. I believe social,economic, and political divisions will sharpen in the next 20 years and America will be on the verge of breaking up if it hasn’t already done so.
    Regardless of all that though, I’ll call Graycenphil on one of his concrete predictions. “We” are not going to Mars or any other planet.
    It’s not that it’s technically impossible; it’s just economically impossible even now and certainly more impossible later on. Who would pay for it?

    • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 12:55 pm #

      I’ll say it. It is technically impossible and you are right there is no good reason to do it other than it’s there.

      • kimmasad01 November 6, 2017 at 1:18 pm #

        Exactly right. Besides, you’d have to take a lot of batteries with you. And oxygen, and food and water. Et cet.

        It’s either Tesla or Mars. There’s not enough coal to SUSTAIN both.

      • beantownbill. November 6, 2017 at 4:22 pm #

        Entropy always increases in a closed system. The issue for discussion is whether the Earth (and hence our civilization) is a closed system. This is why I always talk about robotic space exploration.

        Advanced computers could operate a space probe that extracts valuable resources from asteroids and ship them to Earth orbit. The technology is just about available, or is already here. Therefore, the Earth need not be a closed system and entropy doesn’t have to increase. All that’s lacking is the will to do it. Yeah, our economy sucks, but after the first successful mission, that’ll no longer be a problem.

        Sounds like a tin-foil hat-wearing person’s idea? Only to people with no imagination. Remember, Edison tried 10,000 experiments before he perfected the lightbulb, people around 1900 said man could never fly, and the head of the US patent office wanted it closed in the 1840’s because he thought nothing further could be invented.

        Of course, you think the moon landing was faked, so you and similar thinking people probably believe asteroid mining could never occur.

        • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

          “The issue for discussion is whether the Earth (and hence our civilization) is a closed system.”

          The Earth is definitely not a closed system. The major input is energy from the sun. The current difficulty is in the level of the energy relative to ambient – therefore our ability to convert it to usable forms or products.

          Currently our technology requires a very large energy gradient, e.g. the difference between combustion temperatures and ambient air, to get work done with a large amount of waste heat flowing out of tailpipes, smokestacks, and cooling towers. Ambient sunlight does not provide this gradient.

          • beantownbill. November 6, 2017 at 11:03 pm #

            Which is why we need or get further resources off-Earth.

            Also don’t forget about heat energy from radioactive decay inside the Earth and tidal energy from the moon’s rotational drag on the Earth. But you’re correct, by far the major energy input is from the sun.

    • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 1:11 pm #

      “Graycenphil assumes the geopolitical dynamics will remain the same and things in America will continue on their trajectory. ”

      Entropy is an immutable law of the Universe…and yet there are those who fail to accept this fact.

  29. Boiledfrog November 6, 2017 at 12:58 pm #

    What could go wrong? That church shooting might be just what it looks like. We are getting sicker by the day. Drug overdoses, pornography, suicides, depression, obesity, we are not well. So many are really pissed off at shadows. So god damned pissed off at kneeling at a football game. Face it our country is mentally ill. Pretending it is some God given gift to mankind is just denial. We are all wrong pointing fingers in a fit of impotent rage. Feeding that illness that says taking a gun to church is a good idea. We feed ourselves fear. We feed ourselves distrust. Then act surprised when we get controlled by our fear and distrust. Enough! Time for me to go plant some nettles and garlic.

    • kimmasad01 November 6, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

      The economy is basically not solid. It’s basically shaky. Even if the DJIA were to reach 50K (it won’t) what would that metric even represent? Nothing. Just as today, that metric represents nothing. It’s meaningless to the basic economy.

      The country is not strong. We saw that with the election of DJT. Hillary cheated and STILL lost. That 1) she felt the need to cheat and 2) still lost, shows the country is not strong. It’s very weak. Basically, really weak.

      The DJIA won’t double or triple or quadruple. That is an unfair, wrong prediction. Even if it weren’t wrong (it is), what would that even prove? Nothing. It’s just a number. It has no bearing on the real world because the basic economy is basically not strong at all.

    • elysianfield November 6, 2017 at 1:40 pm #

      “What could go wrong? That church shooting might be just what it looks like. We are getting sicker by the day. Drug overdoses, pornography, suicides, depression, obesity, we are not well. So many are really pissed off at shadows. So god damned pissed off at kneeling at a football game. Face it our country is mentally ill. Pretending it is some God given gift to mankind is just denial. We are all wrong pointing fingers in a fit of impotent rage. Feeding that illness that says taking a gun to church is a good idea. We feed ourselves fear. We feed ourselves distrust”

      Frog,
      At some level, society has never been “well”…all the outrages you list have existed in our culture…so what is different today than, say, 1960? Mass shootings were very, VERY rare then…Charles Whitman…can you think of others? Most shootings were just crimes with the usual criminal intent and motive. What is different now? In 2017?

      There must be some commonality…a root issue that drives people to efficiently kill the harmless. Copycats? Certainly, but that is not the issue. I have given this some thought, and what seems to be a central theme is…dehumanization. The killer knows that he is murdering innocents, but to what purpose? What result?

      One cannot plumb the depths of human perversity…there is no bottom. I think that human rage is manifested today in these events because of a process of training and education that simply dehumanizes innocents. The training and education is in the form of violent video games.

      I know you scoff.

      David Grossman, LTCol. USA (Ret) wrote a book entitled “On Killing” that describes an Army study. The Army found that WWI soldiers, a majority, either did not fire their weapons, or did not aim at the enemy when firing. The study followed our various wars, and training continued until this day, where our fighting forces show a well-over 90% rate of aimed fire. The Army did this by a process of dehumanizing…making targets realistic silhouettes, then with faces, then with video propaganda…and then with video games. We have, perhaps, the best trained military in the World…and violent video games got us there, and are utilized by the military to this day. It worked for the military…who is to say that a dysfunctional citizen, prone to lash out, would not succumb to the same conditioning?

      Video games may not make someone homicidal, or prone to violence, but it might make for less inhibition in a moment of lashing out.

      Charles Whitman? Oh yeah, a Marine trained rifleman….

      • seawolf77 November 6, 2017 at 2:37 pm #

        Very true. I realized that along time ago. America has been de-humanized to the point of a military.

      • beantownbill. November 6, 2017 at 4:35 pm #

        If one considers guns a tool, then shooting someone is just an extension of an action that many creatures in the wild perform daily. Preying mantises bite the heads off their victims and black widow spiders kill their mates. Both of these examples are disgusting, but do we say spiders and mantises are sick species?

        Humans may well be a crazy species, but if so, gun violence is only one example of a much larger issue, and is not the defining problem of Homo sapiens.

        • 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 9:05 pm #

          We can reconcile the behavior of
          Spiders
          Mantises
          Even Chimpanzees
          But we can’t reconcile human behavior
          It causes dissonance
          Repression
          Which in turn causes sociopathies
          Trying to live with ourselves is only killing us another way

      • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 1:11 am #

        Charles Whitman had a brain tumor. That a man with that training had a brain tumor in the right place on his brain to make him crazy was a tragedy.

        • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 11:19 am #

          Dog,
          He may have, I do not remember. But was the tumor causal? Even today, the causality of his act would be questioned…the tumor certainly did not affect his aim….

          • seawolf77 November 7, 2017 at 2:56 pm #

            He did.

          • K-Dog November 10, 2017 at 12:10 am #

            It was causal, he had tried to get help if I recall but tumors grow and he did not get the help he needed.

      • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:33 am #

        Recently it’s the RISE of SSRI’s all these shooters as of late have been on em and with huge doses!
        Are they crazy hell yes but the SSRI’s put people into a state of non-emotion or worse up and down yo-yoing to include enraged states of being.
        I have several co-workers that go off/on them an when they are on them they are zombies devoid of normal emotion.

        You want the why Video games are hardly the cause but a symptom.
        Want another symptom unfettered on demand abortion.
        Correlation and causation!
        We are bathed in desensitizing details in movies, music and daily life but the human race HAS always been capable of extreme violence and mayhem it’s in our DNA.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 5:06 pm #

      The shootings – facilitated or not – are also likely a form of ritualized suicide by powerless people at the end of their rope who are maybe not quite sure they’re ready for suicide, but they’re damn sure mad as hell and ready to visit their upon pain upon uncaring others, and in the process, paint themselves in a corner from which suicide is the only remaining option. It also gives meaning to their suicidal act, which would have otherwise been relatively meaningless and unnoticed, and ends their pitiful (in their own judgement) life with a heroic flourish. In other words, they’re seeking to escape their pain first by visiting it on others (a form of divine retribution), and in the process ,in some small way give meaning to their own tragic (in their view) life and death.

      Is that mentally ill? Yes and no. The heroic impulse is deeply ingrained in all of us, and in the shooter’s eyes they are acting heroically (much like a warrior, which our culture fetishizes greatly as well) in overcoming what they view as impossible circumstances at the expense of their own life. Is it also inevitable that a fairly large number of hopeless people will eventually choose to go this route? Apparently so. Especially when/if they’re facilitated by agents of darkness.

      • Ol' Scratch November 7, 2017 at 7:00 am #

        From 100th Avatar’s link below:

        “A considerable evil of imprisonment is the denial of most distractive options. And as terms for deliverance by other means are poor as well, the prisoner will tend to stay in the close vicinity of despair. The acts he then commits to deflect the final stage have a warrant in the principle of vitality itself. In such a moment he is experiencing his soul within the universe, and has no other motive than the utter inendurability of that condition.

        Pure examples of life-panic are presumably rare, as the protective mechanisms are refined and automatic and to some extent unremitting. But even the adjacent terrain bears the mark of death, life is here barely sustainable and by great efforts. Death always appears as an escape, one ignores the possibilities of the hereafter, and as the way death is experienced is partly dependent on feeling and perspective, it might be quite an acceptable solution. If one in statu mortis could manage a pose (a poem, a gesture, to ‘die standing up’), i.e. a final anchoring, or a final distraction (Aases’ death), then such a fate is not the worst one at all. The press, for once serving the concealment mechanism, never fails to find reasons that cause no alarm – “it is believed that the latest fall in the price of wheat…”

        When a human being takes his life in depression, this is a natural death of spiritual causes. The modern barbarity of ‘saving’ the suicidal is based on a hairraising misapprehension of the nature of existence.”

        philosophynow.org/issues/45/The_Last_Messiah

      • elysianfield November 8, 2017 at 10:10 am #

        “The shootings – facilitated or not – are also likely a form of ritualized suicide by powerless people at the end of their rope”

        Scratch,
        For some, no doubt. However, what of the suspects wearing ballistic armor…masks, gloves, and leaving the scene at high rates of speed?

        • Ol' Scratch November 8, 2017 at 8:38 pm #

          For some suicide progresses by stages, for some it happens all at once.

          But few of the recent shootings have been as you described. Almost all are ritualistic “passion plays” about ending the shooter’s and the victims’ lives in a single event.

          More “professional” events like you refer to here – FAR fewer in number, by the way – indicate either an outlier event, extremely unlikely by its very nature, or a “professionally” facilitated event for whatever purpose.

          But keep in mind as well that the extremely well-funded MICC spooks no doubt have computer algorithms developed for all this shit to make sure that their operations leave no tell tale statistical footprints, and so some operations will be outliers by design.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 9:38 pm #

      They are kneeling out of contempt for a nation that has given them what they don’t deserve. Thus is human nature. Bring back law and order, and the people will feel devotion again.

    • PeteAtomic November 7, 2017 at 12:28 am #

      yeah, no shit

  30. KesaAnna November 6, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

    ” Two, the primary concern and effort by any government is to control the masses, a responsibility that King George simply forgot. ”

    Given how pedantically scrupulous , and habitually prone to worry , ” Farmer George ” was , I’m inclined to doubt that he forgot.

    My guess is that his generation of aristocrats actually did have some , if few , but some, limits on their exercise of power.

    ” If you’re young you don’t have the benefit of the perspective times past. Businesses in huge swathes of the US interior employed vast numbers of American men that went to work everyday carrying lunch pails. Every shift change was signalled by the wail of the factory siren and the town lived by its dictates. But it was a decent living. One working man’s salary could support a family.

    No more though. The bi-coastal glitterati pour scorn on those days, on the one hand saying that working people didn’t deserve such a good living because of their educational and attitudinal deficiencies.

    Or, on the other hand, and in direct contradiction, scoff at the notion that such times even existed. Well, they did. ”

    When I moved to the united states , it so happened that I moved in right down the street from Guilford Courthouse — the site , now a park and museum — of a significant battle of the American revolution.
    So it happened that my first significant exposure to the U.S. historical narrative was the American Revolution.

    The peasants are sooo much better off than they were because………. well ……….the aristocracy were obliged to dispense with wigs and Orders of the Golden Fleece.

    Wow , a real cutting down to size !

    and derogatory terms like , ” peasant ” were rightfully stigmatized.

    Because , you know , being called , flatteringly , an “associate ” more effectively pays your grocery bill than being demeaningly called an “employee” , or , even worse , a “servant.”

    In other words ;

    Virtually identical to the Soviet historical narrative I already knew,

    • volodya November 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

      Yes, calling someone “comrade” when they’re anything but your “comrade”, when you have to watch every word and intonation lest they denounce you and you get a night-time knock on the door, is mocking your absolute and utter powerlessness.

      Job-titles without the money are just another insult to your intelligence and it’s an insult to you personally. It’s spitting in your face.

      Telling the astoundingly wealthy aristocracy to not flaunt it so as to not get the villagers restless is a measure to just temporarily put off upheaval.

      Nowadays the Democrats endlessly go on and on about women’s reproductive rights ie abortion. But here’s the thing, better the Democrats deal with more immediate needs like a woman’s needing to eat three times a day, every day and pay the rent every month. A woman MAY need an abortion once in her life, maybe twice. But she needs to eat dammit. And pay the rent. The Republicans are just as bad quacking endlessly about tax cuts. But if half the country pays no income tax, WTF good does a tax cut do for them?

      • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 3:19 pm #

        Hot Buttion Issues.
        Equality and all its fetters.

      • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:37 am #

        I know many a women got an abortion or gave up a child for adoption and you know what none of them are happy and all of them are emotionally wrecked.

  31. KesaAnna November 6, 2017 at 1:27 pm #

    ” I think they “think” they are happy. Or, maybe they don’t know what happiness is? What IS happiness, anyway?

    ?

    At least they have freedumb. ”

    Continue making such observations new guy , and I suppose you will, in due course, be labelled a cowardly , depressive, nonconstructive, fear-mongering concentration camp guard.

    ” I quite resent your supposition that I am being paid big bucks to host trolls on this blog. You have generally been very disrespectful lately, and I’m getting sick of your tone. — JHK ”

    I suppose that I , too , am just as prone to sycophancy as are Independence – loving Americans.

    Because now I feel better simply because YOU said it.

  32. 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 2:41 pm #

    “Powell’s contribution to the discourse of finance was his famous utterance that the lack of inflation is ‘kind of a mystery.'”

    There is plenty of inflation. Just look at your grocery bill.
    Your dinner tab.
    Your trip to the theater or bowling alley.
    How about a live sporting event?
    A full-size pick-up only sets you back $50K

    Sure, many consumer goods are cheap.
    LCD TVs, and home spies, I mean, uh, Alexas and Nest and whatever.

    Well, the exception is that new iLeash X at $999. Yes a phone.
    No inflation there.
    Addicts will pay and feed Apple’s cash nest at something like $275 billion, but that’s profit taking not inflation.

    We’re all being taken… and told that it’s raining.

    • amb November 7, 2017 at 2:00 am #

      Deflation is occurring at the same time. There are many types of inflation. It is all mixed up like a salad. $129 for a color laser printer/scanner/copier/fax machine? C’mon! That is deflation. A high resolution video and audio of your grandchildren sent to your phone for free? C’mon. Or live Facetime with your brother and his family in France for free? C’mon.

      And, the iphone is not a phone, it is a computer that is capable of many many actions and functions (phone just happens to be one of them). It is an amazing piece of technology and can do wonders to help one in business and in so many other areas of one’s life. It isn’t just a toy. It can be used creatively and contructively and can safe one a lot of time and effort in many areas.

      • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 11:26 am #

        ” It isn’t just a toy. It can be used creatively and contructively ”

        Amb,

        My first reaction is to say…”Yeah and so is a butt-plug”

        But, then, I have a bad attitude…and not even a simple cell phone do I have.

      • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:41 am #

        Yet it’s also a control mechanism.
        Just look at how many people flip out when they can’t find their phone!
        People are addicted to these tools and it is really scary how mind numbing they can be.
        For reference just watch people as they drive and how many of them can’t stay off the stupid devices to the point they are causing traffic issues, crashes and delays because they are so absorbed by the device they fail to note the light change or the traffic moving around them.
        Life was actually better when it was just a flip phone.
        I have watched my daughter and her friends sitting in the same room texting mindless nonsense instead of simply looking up and talking to each other.

  33. norecovery November 6, 2017 at 2:47 pm #

    Mr. K neglected to mention the biggest thing that IS going wrong — accelerating climate disruption.

    • 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 3:03 pm #

      Hardly.
      That’s merely a symptom.

      If the human population on this planet was significantly reduced there would be exponential change for the better.

      If it disappeared entirely, the planet would fare better and begin healing immediately.

      For no other organism is this true.

      Humans avoid taboos.
      Like death.
      It’s squashed.
      In the recesses.
      Truth burying is a human survival mechanism.
      From economy reports to global habitat destruction

    • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:44 am #

      bah such bullcrap.
      No proof or evidence of this nonsense and our record keeping is not even close to knowing what weather was like even a 1k years ago.
      Climate changes it’s a simple fact otherwise we would still be running around on glaciers or swimming in some steamy swamp.
      Get it it cycles back and forth.
      Move on.
      Plant a garden, plant trees do something other than throw money at the perceived issue making useless people richer.
      Re-green the world then we can talk about Climate disruption fiction.

  34. ricksinger November 6, 2017 at 2:56 pm #

    “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”

    Quoting: Yogi Berra, or Niels Bohr, or Albert Einstein, or Mark Twain, or Somebody (see footnote below)

    I applaud Graycenphil’s courage of his convictions and JKK’s respect for dissenting opinions. We’ve all read the Long Emergency and perhaps Too Much Magic. Many of JHK’s predictions will come to pass. Eventually. I’ve tuned into Klusterfuck’s dystopian message, but as with all boomers, much of our darkest fears have never come to pass…starting with the nuclear cold war standoff we’ve lived through most if not all of our lives.

    Some version of “the world made by hand” may come to pass. I don’t think any of us will be alive to see it. So it’s just academic as far as a prediction goes.

    Footnote: Interesting coincidence both Yogi Berra, or Niels Bohr were named MVP in 1951. Bohr was honored by his peers with the Most Valuable Physicist award and Yogi with the first of his three MVP (Most Valuable Player) awards.

  35. Buck Stud November 6, 2017 at 2:58 pm #

    I’m not nearly as optimistic as Gray Phil.

    For starters, we are a society that is systematically, via legislation, shovelling, all the loot up to the one percent. Meanwhile, those down below are among the most well armed society members ever. Further compounded the windup of societal violence, are racists like Janos, who willingly lube and offer ass to the one percent as long as their racial animus is satiated.

    The old LJB quote has Janos written all over it:

    “”If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.”

    How can anyone be hopeful for a nation of dupes who don’t even know who their real enemies are?

    Back to the most well armed society ever. A grieving father can’t afford the hospital bill for his dying son; the desperate home owner now on the streets because of a medical bankruptcy; the unemployed drug addict loser who goes over edge due to bad dose of prescription drugs that were meant to mollify the angst; oh, and the two halves of the country who basically hate each other’s guts like the “liberal” who kicked the living shit out of Sen Paul with his bare fists–and all too many willing to pull a trigger as their own personal final solution.

    No, I’m not hopeful for the next twenty years.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 5:00 pm #

      I’m not nearly as optimistic as Gray Phil.

      Sarcasm?

      “”If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.”
      You are living in the past

      You watch much TV? Film? Print ads?
      Blacks are elevated, Whites denigrated.

      • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:58 am #

        Actually when anybody is denigrated everybody is denigrated. Treating everybody with dignity and respect solves all these problems. Unfortunately that is like having to eat your most hated food for some people. Axes to grind, agendas selfishness and stupidity keeps denegration rolling along.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 8:54 pm #

      Nice post Buck! Agreed 100%

      • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:10 pm #

        Because you a vicious fool just like him. 100%.

        • Ol' Scratch November 7, 2017 at 6:23 am #

          LOL! You’re a hoot Janos!

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:10 pm #

      That’s a really low blow Buck. No group is more hated in America by the Elite than Conservative Whites. And among them, White Nationalists are hated the most.

      So racial awareness or racism is something created by the Elite? They use electricity against us too – does that mean they created it? How childish you are. Whites and Blacks are different groups and don’t belong in the same nation. There is a natural tension between them. The Elite have activated the potential for their own ends. But they didn’t create it. By your lights, Whites should just roll over and die to prove they aren’t racists – and that’s despicable.

      • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:51 am #

        I think I have a solution for you.

        You can leave and find your whiteness because it isn’t here.

        • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:51 am #

          My my how things change and yet stay the same.

          The 1868 Democratic National Convention was held at Tammany Hall in New York City. The slogan for the 1868 Democratic National Convention was, “This is a White Man’s Country, Let White Men Rule”.[1] The convention was notable for the return of Democratic Party politicians from the southern states.

          While they don’t say it anymore just look at the last Presidential runs from both major parties.
          It would seem some things never actually change do they Dog?

  36. volodya November 6, 2017 at 3:05 pm #

    There’s no measure that adequately quantifies the full-of-shit-ness of pronouncements like “inflation is a mystery”.

    Government agencies are providers of mis-information, regulators are facilitators for fraud and multifarious malfeasance, the lady at the wicket at the government office is the first line of defense against you. But first take a number sir and wait over there and preferably die waiting.

    But if you don’t die then you’ll be tested by skilled and experienced mis-direction. You will be impatiently fed falsehoods and half answers and word-puzzles. You may even get yelled at. See, you are nothing, an exceedingly small nothing and if you die of rage it is of unsurpassingly small consequence.

    As James Comey most brazenly showed us, the federal agencies we laughingly law enforcement are in reality Italianate arrangements of people and assets whose purpose it is to obstruct the administration of justice. Comey himself was the personification in male form of the blind-folded lady holding the scales. He proved to us what true blindness is in avoiding such elephantine piles of shit as those left by the Clinton gang. You can not see or smell anything if you really try. You don’t even need a blind-fold.

    Then for comic relief we have economists who with massive bovine dignity tell us things like Powell did. Yellen too, not long ago said she doesn’t understand inflation. How the fuck can this be? She’s got a building full of PhDs. WTF are they being paid for? If they can’t collectively figure it out it’s time to turn out the lights.

  37. 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 3:09 pm #

    No wonder the rise in the Leisurely Passive-Aggressive P-Type.
    People are checking out of the game.
    The rat race.

    It’s not a personality disorder anymore.
    It’s a survival mechanism in a world of smoke, mirrors and Protestant slave ethics.

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 5:06 pm #

      JBS is where Alex Jones got his notes or rotes.

      AJ make a lotta yen or yuan or someting from rose notes.

      • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:52 am #

        and yet AJ Is more correct on what is going on than most of the other “news with views” type propaganda machines.
        CNN
        MSNBC
        ABC
        Fox news
        bbc
        just to name a few.

  38. ricksinger November 6, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    Regarding the stock market, there is one answer why it’s gone up 25% during Trump’s nascent rein. According to the WSJ he explains it in just one word: “Me”.

    marketwatch.com/story/me-donald-trumps-simple-explanation-for-why-the-stock-market-is-at-record-high…

  39. zekesdad November 6, 2017 at 3:23 pm #

    I basically agree with Gracenphil, and I thank him for his thoughtful comments. Thanks too, to those who respectfully disagree with him. His take is basically that we’ll somehow muddle through. Those of us who share this view do not deny that we (America and the world) face many serious problems, but there are a lot of good things happening too. JHK in this post at least, only if focused on the price of the stock market, but ignores the earnings. Markets are valued on this relation ship with the price / earnings ratio, or P/E. By that yardstick James is correct that stocks are expensive. The current ratio is 25.84, but one needs to remember that the ratio is looking backward at previous earnings. The market (at least for now) is telling us that the prices of stocks, on average compared to future earnings are reasonably priced. What would make that so? Tax reform could make or economy more competitive, pro growth policies by the current administration could also help. A quick look on a website that tracks stock data reveals that on 1/1/99 the ratio was as high as 33.

    The first quarter after Obama took office (3/31/09) it was as low as 7.5. So yes the price of stocks increased over that time, but so did earnings.
    I don’t doubt that there is chicanery on Wall St. and with what the fed is doing, but the fact is, companies like Boeing, Apple, and Berkshire Hathaway are at or near all time highs for a reason. The world is buying airliners and Iphones. Domestically people are buying the stuff that Berkshire Hathaway sells which is everything from auto insurance to hamburgers to electricity.

    There could and probably will be a correction in our stock market, but the notion that Western Civilization is doomed because of high energy prices is nonsense. Oil was trading at $57.24 a few minutes ago. After the Arab oil embargo in the early 1970s it was around $30. The price is not even double of what it was over 40 years ago! What else has increased so little? The minimum wage, a college education, housing or a new car have way more than doubled over the same period. Yes, there is plenty to worry about including terrorism and North Korea, but I don’t think we’re going back to the Middle Ages anytime soon.

    • ricksinger November 6, 2017 at 4:08 pm #

      As we’ve all observed in our lifetime, both Oracle’s of Doom and our Oracle’s of Boom are eventually proven correct at some point in the economic cycle.

      If there are any takers, I’ll lay two-one odds down on a boom. But it’s not exactly the kind that Wall Street is banking on for a further melt-up in equity prices.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 8:51 pm #

      There’s no accounting for stupid. Unless you’re paid to be that way of course.

      • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:46 am #

        It is a matter of picking your time-frame. The day of reckoning is not seen as being in the foreseeable future because hand picked FINANCIAL indicators do not point that way strongly yet. Other indicators prove collapse is on the horizon with mathematical certainty but the choice is made to ignore those indicators for reasons we can only speculate on.

        The thing we can be certain of however is that those reasons have nothing to do with love of one’s fellow man.

        • Epicur November 7, 2017 at 8:30 am #

          “…the choice is made to ignore those indicators for reasons we can only speculate on. ”

          Like most things, I imagine the reasons are varied, but one common one is like that of not being able to outrun a bear. In that instance the next best strategy is to outrun the slow people.

          Race to the top and then bail before the collapse.

          Based on the popularity of private islands and remote cabins among some of the rich, it appears that some of the rich intend to survive, or at least increase their odds.

    • Epicur November 6, 2017 at 10:06 pm #

      “…the notion that Western Civilization is doomed because of high energy prices is nonsense.”

      The issue is not price, but EROEI (Energy Returned On Energy Invested). At an EROEI of 50 one gets a lot of excess energy to convert into useful work and products. At an EROEI of 4, after deducting for dry wells, inefficiencies, and energy losses (waste heat/entropy increases) it is hardly worth drilling a well.

      Some have calculated that some of the latest deepwater wells are approaching an EROEI of 4. Maybe they are wrong – for now – but the day is coming. If we develop other energy sources it will still be worthwhile to drill oil for chemical products – without alternative energy, not so much.

      • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:57 am #

        Except we CAN do with plant extracts exactly what we do with petro products all if it!
        W

        • benr November 8, 2017 at 11:58 am #

          Why drill when you can grow.
          Sorry fat fingered the enter button.

  40. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 3:40 pm #

    Walter B – thank you
    wm

  41. 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

    “President Trump’s new Federal Reserve chair, Jerome “Jay” Powell… (eight years with the Deep State-ish Carlyle Group)”

    Carlyle is as Deep-State as it gets.
    It epitomizes the MIC’s expansion from war hardware to everyday life.
    They got rich as you pawed your chest during ballgame jingoism rituals.

  42. wm5135 November 6, 2017 at 4:31 pm #

    zekesdad
    “Yes, there is plenty to worry about including terrorism and North Korea, but I don’t think we’re going back to the Middle Ages anytime soon”

    When a car runs out of gas at the top of a grade it can usually make it to the bottom of the grade. When considering the possible troubles in the world, North Korea is at the bottom of my list. K-Dog mentions the current ongoing extinction event. That in itself should be enough to slap the rose colored glasses off everyone’s face. A planet filled with nothing but human beings and their excrement, the path we are on. I feel better already.

  43. malthuss November 6, 2017 at 4:50 pm #

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ark_Encounter

    Ark Encounter.

  44. 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 5:22 pm #

    It’s not What Could, it is What is going wrong?

    Eusocial disease.
    Infection of the superorganism.

    Durkheim understood it in the 19th century.
    When social norms disintegrate, when the bonds of the eusocial disappear, when “anomie” sets in, the suicides begin. They come in many varieties. Opioid overdoses, mass killings, suicide bonsoirs if you will.
    It is evident today. The breakdown and the reaction.

    People as animals are studied as animals.
    Like poison in an ant hill. Reactions are predictable.
    Easily so.

    Merton wanted to understand the poor, the majority.
    They first conform, can’t reach the dream, end up at retreatism (cue the booze and opioids again).
    Before this stage, many many are contented at ritualism. Punching the clock. Subsisting.
    Many creature comforts are baked-in to subsisting these days.
    It keeps the capitalistic ritual alive and well.

    The thing is, after this current stage, the retreatism, there is one left.
    Rebellion.
    That is, if anyone is left not strung-out or shot.

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 8:37 pm #

      The thing is, after this current stage, the retreatism, there is one left.
      Rebellion.

      You left out the other option: surrender and die.

      Most will simply do that.

      • 100th Avatar November 6, 2017 at 8:51 pm #

        Take it up with Merton

      • beantownbill. November 6, 2017 at 11:16 pm #

        Surrender and die is a result of anomie. Many persons live lives of quiet desperation, hence the now-common mass shootings and bombings.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:13 pm #

      Thomas?

      • 100th Avatar November 7, 2017 at 12:20 am #

        Why of course. Was he not on to something with that people would use deviant means to attain societal benchmarks, abnormal for norms? So wanting to make it in society, that they’d break almost any rule to ultimately get on top of it.
        See: Banksters, DNC, Clinton/Bush Families.

        • 100th Avatar November 7, 2017 at 12:28 am #

          You are thinking of the catholic that conveniently ended up in a place that condones ladyboy pederasty.
          No, I’m speaking of the thinker.

    • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:25 am #

      Modernity was new in Durkheim’s time. He could have identified the problem and perhaps associated it with a collapse of religious belief and other reasons but what could he have done to solve the riddle?

      Not much at that time. Later thinkers would have to come up with the answer. Rebellion is the answer but it is a rebellion with rules. Rule 1, no killing. Rule 2. It is natural and right to rebel for we are always trying to improve our lot. Rule 3. Rebellion against rebellion must also be a maintained posture. Rebellion must be true to promising solution to what is being rebelled against and nothing more. Self examination must keep rebellion true. Rule 4. Future ends must never allow for extraordinary and unjust measures. Utopia for sacrifice must never be promised.

      t is natural to improve the human condition and this needs to be the basis for a new morality which institutions and cheap energy can no longer substitute for. To long we have let others do our thinking for us but now we must reclaim the identities we traded away long ago for creature comfort.

  45. KesaAnna November 6, 2017 at 5:27 pm #

    ” Hot Buttion Issues.
    Equality and all its fetters. ”

    Equality ?

    I never approach it except skeptically , whether the source is Martin Luther , Abraham Lincoln , Benito Mussolini , or Woody Allen.

    You might think I love this video because it not – at – all -respectfully ridicules feminist double – talk.

    youtube.com/watch?v=wQfBt_GxYaI

    No.

    I love it because if you merely switch out the labels , it sounds just like the typical poster here.

    For example, in the video the girl says ,

    I am seeking out a white , heterosexual , cis-gendered male , all the while blaming all of humanities problems on white , heterosexual , cis-gendered males. ”

    Now let’s do a little copy-pasting ;

    ” I judge everyone on the basis of premises that come exclusively from the Judeo / Christian / Islamic cosmology , all the while blaming all of humanities problems on the Judeo / Christian / Islamic cosmology. “

    • malthuss November 6, 2017 at 8:17 pm #

      Equality [=] is a social construct.
      Equal rights under the law, yes. Another construct.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:16 pm #

      In one famous case, a Social Justice Warrior Woman on the front lines in Haiti got raped by one of the natives. She wrote an editorial blaming White Men.

      Women cannot lead and are not equal. Their endless blaming shows that. They are followers by and large, exceptions admitted.

  46. BackRowHeckler November 6, 2017 at 8:08 pm #

    Big thing here is media happy talk about ‘start ups’. Each day there are hopeful stories bout nerdy looking young people concocting this or that business idea at the local Starbucks. The hope of the future is in ‘start ups’, and that young gal right there sipping a $6 latte and looking into her cellphone just might be the next Jeff Bezos or Bill Gates. You never know.

    Ever since that solar eclipse in August a lot of bad stuff has been happening, hydrogen bombs going off in NKorea, mass murder, terror attacks etc. I wonder if it was a sign. The world seems to be taking on an apocalyptic hue like it was 1914 or 1938, and a day of reckoning appears on the near horizon.

    brh

    • Ol' Scratch November 6, 2017 at 8:49 pm #

      If you mean to imply that some mythical GOD in the sky pre-ordained that all this shit should happen to humans because he/she decided that this is how it should end, I can assure you that that is not the case. Although it’s certainly quite understandable for you to postulate that, given humans’ well known propensity for linear projection – a valuable survival trait.

      No, this one’s on humans – especially the few particularly malevolent among you – and not on anyone else. Like little children, pray to or curse all the gods and saviours you want, but in the end, this is the bed humanity chose to make, and they’re DAMN WELL going to have to sleep in it!

      • BackRowHeckler November 6, 2017 at 9:20 pm #

        Here, here scratch, good post.

        That solar eclipse line a was meant to be a little tongue and cheek and hyperbolic; at one time tho, in certain civilizations, a solar eclipse was thought to portend future events, none of them good.

        brh

        • Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:17 pm #

          You should have said, good scratch post, also to be used by male dogs.

          • Ol' Scratch November 7, 2017 at 6:26 am #

            You’re on fire Janos! Good one!

      • Walter B November 6, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

        Hey Scratch, how about the possibility that there exists an intelligence that is so intelligent that looking down on who we are, what we want and how we go about getting, it was simply able to know how it all would play out? I’m mean after all, we ARE pretty damned predictable.

        • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:02 am #

          The intelligence would have to see a lot and anticipate much. How about the intelligence is not looking down but is right here. Looking sideways. We don’t have all the answers but some of us know quite a bit. One of the things the intelligence sees is that those who understand how it is going down are not the same as those who can acquire power. The conclusion is, things look bad.

          • Walter B November 7, 2017 at 9:25 am #

            Yes K-Dog, right here but in an alternate dimension, a spiritual realm one might call it. It is within and it is without. As far as power goes, the people that originally established this nation realized that there was a great difference between power and leadership. Power was understood to come from the people and leadership requires a moral compass and has many responsibilities. Those who find themselves in such positions of leadership shall be held accountable for how they utilized the opportunity. Too many who have risen to earthly power today through the acquisition of wealth have sold out to greed and self service, possibly even all of them. They are leading the herd to demise and those of us who speak out against them and those that bow down to them shall always attract their ire. It is a sign that we are doing what is right. A badge of courage. Damn their eyes!

      • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 12:22 am #

        dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5053013/Devin-Kelley-outcast-preached-atheism.html#ixzz4xeRNiXYF

        We’re being hunted by dangerous Atheists who want a repeat of the French, Russian, Chinese etc Revolutions. Unfortunately for them, we’re not giving up our guns for any reason. They take our goodness for weakness.

    • malthuss November 7, 2017 at 1:16 am #

      Accidents or false flags?
      Weather wars?
      Did airplanes cause the Santa Rosa fires?

  47. FincaInTheMountains November 6, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

    In 1992 with British Pound “happened” Black Wednesday and the pound fell by more than 25% in a few days, and would have fallen by 75%, but the British government banned short sales (that is, if you sold the pound without having it – por favour come to prison, and the transaction is declared invalid) and issued a warrant for the arrest of George Soros, whom the rumors blamed that he not only created an “espionage” network for obtaining insider information, but also attracted significantly more dollars and Deutsche Marks for the short sale of the pound , than he had, obviously using the financial backing of a very powerful organization, perhaps the most powerful financial organization in the world.

    And then no one in Britain shouted about the inevitable collapse of his country and demand the immediate resignation of the newly elected government of John Major, although he later said that he wrote a letter to the Queen with a request for resignation. But he did not send it, but on the contrary, devaluated the pound and significantly lowered the discount rate, which, combined with the devaluation effect familiar to the Russians by 1998, led to a rapid development of industry and a significant increase in the competitiveness of English goods, financed by cheap loans.

    But most importantly, Britain told to get lost to the European financial system, now known as the Euro Zone, because of the participation in which it has been conducting interventions for so long, trying to stop the pound’s fall, having spent in vain for this several billion pounds that ended up in the pockets of George Soros and his comrades.

    Back then, as now, it was not just about expanding the euro zone, but also about expanding the zone of Germany’s vital interests, or if you want vital interests of the Fourth Reich.

    And British Prime Minister John Major was the political heir to Margaret Thatcher, who most consistently among all politicians of that time loved Germany so much that she wanted to be two of them.

  48. pentrus November 6, 2017 at 10:20 pm #

    I read these posts and the clever language therein and I often find myself laughing out loud in spite of the dire predictions made by Mr. Kunstler. That is what keeps me coming back in spite of the depressing nature of the things he describes.

  49. pentrus November 6, 2017 at 10:27 pm #

    I am going to hate being old, cold, and hungry when all of this blows up. People say to be prepared. Easy to say, but if things get as bad as I think they might, it may be difficult to maintain what one has put aside (I am not talking money but actual commodities) when everyone else is also cold and hungry and willing to do whatever it takes to survive. If the economy craters as badly as Mr. Kunstler predicts, these mass shootings that have been occurring so often of late may seem like the good old days.

    • K-Dog November 6, 2017 at 11:55 pm #

      Yes it will not be anything I look forward to either. People say lots of things but people actually don’t know very much. I think it is impossible to anticipate what will happen; the road is not traveled before us. I doubt an individual can adequately prepare and finding like minded people you can trust to prepare with is difficult. The best thing that could happen is if the resource supply problems were recognized by enough people so it was OK talk about it. How to accomplish that goal I don’t know.

  50. Janos Skorenzy November 6, 2017 at 11:26 pm #

    False positives are true falsehoods, as in the crisis or orgasm. It should never happen, but it does. Thus the old saying, This is my rifle. This is my gun. This is for shooting. This is for fun. The rifle shoots death. The “gun” shoots life. Which is better? Can one exist without the other? Thus the Bhagavad Gita says, “Death is certain for the living. Life is certain for the dead. Where is there room for grief in any of this for the Wise?”.

    Rather seek Life not life. The Life that abides in Light, yea, the Life that abides in Light.

    • BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 12:30 am #

      Hey, speaking of the Bhagavad Gita, over in Burma, Buddhists led by militant Monks are still hammering Muzzies hard, driving them into leaky boats with which to make their escape to Bangladesh. Many are drowning in the Indian Ocean. Can you imagine, trying to get into Bangladesh, not out? Is poet Gary Snyder still alive? Maybe he can write a Haiku about ethnic cleansing in Burma, Buddhists trying to keep their country Buddhist. (I presume these are real authentic Buddhists, not the bullshit Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics type out in Colorado where old guys use eastern religion mumbo jumbo to nail naïve young coeds)

      In fact, I’m gonna write my own Haiku about Buddhists pounding Muzzies in Burma. Give me a minute.

      brh

      • BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 12:42 am #

        Rohingya Devils

        We have them on the run

        The sea washes over them

        with apologies to Michael Mc lure and Lew welsh

        brh

        • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 1:26 pm #

          Beautiful. You should publish it somewhere.

  51. BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 12:57 am #

    Hey it looks like (more) trouble in the Middle East, with possible military action between Saudi Arabia and Iran backed Lebanon. Also, Saudi Arabia seems to be imploding, with Saud family members being arrested and locked up.

    Back in TLE Jim predicted at some point Saudi Arabia would go down, and end up as simply Arabia once again.

    brh

  52. Buck Stud November 7, 2017 at 1:50 am #

    “That’s a really low blow Buck. No group is more hated in America by the Elite than Conservative Whites. And among them, White Nationalists are hated the most.

    So racial awareness or racism is something created by the Elite? They use electricity against us too – does that mean they created it? How childish you are. Whites and Blacks are different groups and don’t belong in the same nation. There is a natural tension between them. The Elite have activated the potential for their own ends. But they didn’t create it. By your lights, Whites should just roll over and die to prove they aren’t racists – and that’s despicable.” –Janos

    Why is it a low blow–you proudly champion your racism? Furthermore, speaking of childish, you’re never going to have an America that is not multi-ethnic; that shipped sailed too long ago and from another continent; and yes, for economically exploitative reasons: Full circle irony.

    My only point is you will support a political party that will economically rape you if only they make some “nationalist” noise.

    Probably you think, “first things first”: depose the Blacks, Mexicans, Jews, Gays, Liberals etc and only after that can there be a mention of massive economic stratification.

    But do you really think that’s going to happen? After all, the demographic handwriting is on the wall. For example, by 2030, Texas will be majority Latino/a. Truly a demographic inevitability worth pondering for minds looking reality straight in the face.

    BTW, you have every right to like who you like and prefer what you must in terms of people and groups and you’re exceedingly honest about admitting your racism–many are not. I suspect that in everyday life you are respectful, peaceful and non-violent.

    But you missed my larger point. In a society as torn and divided as the U.S. currently is, don’t forget that if pushed far enough into a forlorn corner, that even the blacks, Mexicans, gays,economically disenfranchised may become so desperate that they too start violently demonstrating their “right” to bear arms.

    Shit, some lunatics will go full Rambo to even a score with their ex-in-laws.

    No doubt you fantasize about a full out and out race war but it won’t go down that way; the way it will go down will utterly destroy the economy and American way of life in it’s current form, day, by day, month by month, year by year, like a long slow battle with a terminal disease.

    Do you remember John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo? Do you recall how only two lunatics paralyzed and terrorized a vast urban territory? Just imagine this multiplied by much larger numbers, and yes, much more desperate and angry militants bent on destruction.

    Truthfully, the only way forward is to try and foster, if not “brotherhood”, at least a basic respectful civility. And no, this basic, respectful civility does not imply open borders and lax immigration laws/enforcement.The left needs to get real on that count and yes, the left shares blame in the horrid state of current affairs too,

    Put another way, the golden leaves on top can only shimmer brilliantly if the root, trunk,branches and boughs below are watered and nurtured.

    Seemingly, you don’t mind becoming a hollow log if only the “other” trees are cut down entirely, or at least threatened with being cut down which of course will never happen because it’s nothing but a populous head fake meant to distract from yet more economic stratification/inequity/oppression.

    Just look at the left hand pointing at “them” while the right hand lifts your wallet.

    Why oh why do people willingly hollow out the log of their lives so the golden leaves can shimmer more brightly before the trees below ultimately collapse from the oppressive weight of gold above?

    Because of “them” ?

    I’m sorry, but self-defeating strategies are simply too “childish”.

    • outsider November 7, 2017 at 9:53 am #

      A most excellent comment, Black Stud!

    • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 10:46 am #

      ‘a basic respectful civility’

      There you go that is what we need. Believe what you wish but treat others well regardless of what you believe.

    • Elrond Hubbard November 7, 2017 at 12:27 pm #

      Bravo to you, Buck Stud, for standing up for simple civility (and a practical approach to public order) in the face of intemperate bigotry. Your vision is indeed the correct one. Unfortunately your target is fully immunized against it by his very bigotry, and extremely unlikely to be swayed.

      I’ll say this for the race matters crowd: they’re right, race does matter, only not on the odious ‘merits’ of racism. Race matters because it matters to racists, and because they won’t shut up about their preoccupation, meaning the rest of us have to deal with their bullshit whether we want to or not. All the toxicity of identity politics boils down to two things: identity groups seeking power for themselves, versus pushback from well-meaning people who nonetheless end up feeding the toxicity. (E.g., providing fodder for white supremacists to proclaim that their opponents support identity-based rights for everyone except white supremacists, when the real point is to get beyond identity affiliation and simply deal with people, just as they are.)

      Unfortunately, the true and committed white supremacists are not likely to accept a multi-ethnic society for civility’s sake. There will always be bitter-enders who will either vow to do as much harm as possible as long as they don’t get their way, or make a stab at separatism and ethnic cleansing if things are allowed to go that far. Appealing for civility isn’t going to appease the yahoos; they have to be dealt with on their own terms.

      • volodya November 7, 2017 at 1:22 pm #

        Do French Quebecers accept a multi-ethnic society? Wasn’t there some unpleasantness up there over Muslim face coverings? Something about a law banning them?

        • Elrond Hubbard November 7, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

          “Do French Quebecers accept a multi-ethnic society?” Some more than others. Unfortunately, some who don’t are currently in power, and using their power to enforce norms that aren’t the government’s business to enforce.

          You’re referring to a bill passed a few weeks ago by the Québec national assembly that requires people to show their faces in order to provide or receive public services. The law has been denounced as unworkable and empowers any bigot who happens to have a government job.

          Despite denials, the law is clearly unconstitutional under Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which guarantees freedom of conscience and religion as a fundamental Canadian value. As the law is written, it theoretically turns every bus driver into a petty law-enforcement officer empowered to demand people uncover their faces if they want to step on board. In practice, it’s a religious discrimination ordinance — a fact which will be perfectly obvious the first time said bus driver orders a Muslim woman to remove her veil, without requiring the same thing of a pur-laine white Québecer wearing a balaclava. (We’re talking about Montréal winters here; this is guaranteed to happen). I doubt it will survive a court challenge, and will be happy to see it struck down.

      • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 1:30 pm #

        Here you go, El: Douchbaggery on steroids.

        Controversy erupted recently after tweets from an Ivy League teaching assistant showed her admitting she only calls on white male students as a last resort.

        “I will always call on my black women students first. Other [people of color] get second tier priority. [White women] come next. And, if I have to, white men,” University of Pennsylvania teaching assistant Stephanie McKellop tweeted in October.

        McKellop’s tweets spotlight a method known as the “progressive stack” in which speaking priority is given to minority voices while those deemed as having privilege must wait their turn.

        McKellop’s comments ignited a firestorm over the controversial teaching method and prompted her university to look into the situation, but a College Fix review of online documentation shows McKellop is far from the first instructor to employ the “progressive stack” in the classroom.

        You need to be muzzled so women of color can speak. Why do you think you matter more than them or any person of color? Shut up.

        • Elrond Hubbard November 7, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

          Assuming that to be a genuine example, that sounds like a case of the second thing I referred to: pushback from people who think they mean well but nonetheless end up feeding the toxicity of identity politics. Yet I still give Stephanie McKellop credit that I don’t give you, Janos, given that you reliably post a dozen things no less toxic week after week after week.

          What’s more, while Ms. McKellop exercises power in a petty way from her position of academic privilege, I hold out hope that her consciousness can still be raised to a higher level. I have no such hope for you: your agenda of power-seeking and supremacism is too far advanced, and you call evil good with defiant self-awareness.

        • Janos Skorenzy November 8, 2017 at 12:54 am #

          amren.com/news/2017/11/explaining-spread-white-anger/

        • Q. Shtik November 8, 2017 at 2:05 am #

          When I read something like this I reflect back with amazement that as recently as 1958-1962 I attended an all-male college in which I do not recall there being even one black student or one female professor…although surely there must have been at least one. Too bad I lost my college yearbook…I could confirm this vague recollection.

          And to top it off, for decades, my high school contained not a single black student, male or female.

          I never gave a thought to how unusual this was until many years later.

        • elysianfield November 8, 2017 at 10:25 am #

          ““I will always call on my black women students first. Other [people of color] get second tier priority. [White women] come next. And, if I have to, white men,”

          I will always call on my white male students first. Other races get second-tier priority…White women come next. And, if I have to Black men….

          I don’t know…there is something about the statements that I can’t quite put my finger on…Oh yeah, the blatant, overt and criminal racism….

    • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 1:28 pm #

      You’re lashing out because Hillary has been proven to be a complete scumbag – and you loved her and the corrupt cult known as the DNC. Donna Brazil kept her blinds shut because she feared a sniper might take her out as they did Seth Rich.

      You’re supporting a murder cult, Buck.

      • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 1:43 pm #

        So you want to ban the 2nd Amendment now too? Are you weeping crocodile tears like all the Liberals after Las Vegas and now the Church in Texas, where their enemies were mown down? That’s nothing compared to what you people will do if you manage to disarm us. Not gonna happen Buckaroo.

        And yes Buck, as I’ve so often said, the horrible ideology of Capitalism in its quest for cheap labor destroyed us. Diverse Whites could eventually be assimilated, but nothing is infinitely flexible and malleable, least of all a culture or country. You think it’s going to keep on working with groups like the Latinos chortling in triumph over Whites? You’re going to blame us for trying to save some shreds of what we were? It was never going to work yet and it was utterly foolish and malicious from the very get go, a profitless work of darkness, equal parts Capitalist greed and Democratic lust for votes.

        You were one of those people who said there was nothing to worry about and then went to “It’s too late” without ever a middle term or twinge of concern. Be honest: You hate America and your own people and you are glad to see it tortured and destroyed. You are another Elrond, a Scratch whose medium is wood and stone. A Pinnochio with a long, lying nose. A Tin Man without a heart. A Scarecrow without a brain.

        Fess up and become a real boy. Maybe someday you can become a Pinnoche.

        • Buck Stud November 7, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

          Like an embarrassed man standing at a crowded public urinal, you’re straining too hard to take a piss Janos. Especially that second to last paragraph!

          Relax Dude. Haven’t I tried to teach you to quit projecting that tape recording narrative playing in your head in favor of actually discerning the moment at hand?

          For instance, your ludicrous, projective declaration that ‘I want to ban the 2nd amendment’!

          I am simply observing that in a nation of incredibly numerous firearm owners who are divided and ideologically loathe one another, what could possibly go wrong?

          • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 2:38 pm #

            If you people don’t relent, it will go very wrong for you.

            “But you missed my larger point. In a society as torn and divided as the U.S. currently is, don’t forget that if pushed far enough into a forlorn corner, that even the blacks, Mexicans, gays,economically disenfranchised may become so desperate that they too start violently demonstrating their “right” to bear arms.”

            If you believe in the 2nd Amendment, why did you put right in quotations marks? The Antifa are already arming. The Blacks and Mexicans already are. They already do have the right to bear arms. Now and then I see Blacks at gun shows. It’s not something I like to see neither.

          • Elrond Hubbard November 7, 2017 at 10:03 pm #

            Janos: “Now and then I see Blacks at gun shows. It’s not something I like to see neither.”

            This is what I find strangely refreshing about white supremacists: the useful way they turn the racist subtext of American society into text. Everyone’s a little bit racist, but most white Americans are content to just funny-vibe their dark-skinned neighbours. When a Philando Castile gets gunned down by a police officer, they just go tsk and carry on with business. It’s the goose-stepping shaved chimps who have the profane candour to come out and confirm that men like Castile are being punished because they dared act as if the second amendment was meant for them, i.e. people with their skin colour.

            As a leftist, I cordially dislike milquetoast identity-politics liberals, but this is why I can’t bring myself entirely to break with them: even at their witch-huntingest, seeing racism and sexism under every rock, they really are on to (some) hidden power relations.

        • elysianfield November 8, 2017 at 10:29 am #

          “And yes Buck, as I’ve so often said, the horrible ideology of Capitalism in its quest for cheap labor destroyed us.”

          Janos,
          If only there was an economic system where the government mandated that corporations include societal benefit into their equations….

          • Janos Skorenzy November 10, 2017 at 12:55 am #

            It’s called Fascism. Sorry for being so blunt, but the time for subtlety is past. The Terrible Simplifiers predicted by Mumford have arisen: they strip ideas down to the basics all the better for action.

      • Buck Stud November 7, 2017 at 2:43 pm #

        I don’t care about Hillary Clinton and yes, the more one learns, the more off-putting. And I don’t love a political party that is pretty much a loser from where I’m looking.

        The HRC campaign was one of the worst ever run; she didn’t campaign in Michigan or Wisconsin for God’s sake! As Colin Powell observed, Hillary’s hubris does her in every single time.

        I would have voted for Martin Malloy, Sanders or whatever D was nominated not that it probably would have mattered. The country wanted Trump and now they have him.

        Just the other day an elderly Japanese women came up to me while painting. I could barely understand her even though she is an American citizen for many decades. She told me we talked last about three years ago and I do indeed recall her lamenting her abusive ex-husband.

        Anyway, she told me she wanted to show me some of her art work so she left and came back. When she stared scrolling down her Ipad she stopped and reverently said “ah look, President Trump in Japan”. I asked her why she liked Trump and she said “campaign promises” and “illegal immigration”: ‘ those people sneak into our country and use our social services!’

        My point: In retrospect it didn’t matter who the Dems ran for the time of Trump had arrived and I think people on the left are severely exaggerating his demise.

        Anyway, before we parted she gave me two persimmons. She struck me as a very lonely and sad old lady out walking her tiny dog. I was very kind, thankful and respectful of her political beliefs all the while muzzling my own.

        I have made a conscious choice. “Politics” is only allowed so much of my mental real estate…a person should try and enjoy life, ya know?

        • Q. Shtik November 8, 2017 at 12:43 am #

          Just the other day an elderly Japanese women came up to me while painting. – Buck Stud

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

          Really? Was she carrying her canvas in one hand and her pallet in the other? And was this one woman or several women?

          Oh, wait a minute…….I guess you meant while YOU were painting.

          In case our host is monitoring, don’t get bent out of shape, I’m just having a little fun-with-words day.

          • Ol' Scratch November 8, 2017 at 8:52 pm #

            Oh come on now Q! I understand the women/woman typo, but the rest of that was some pretty trifling shit! Typing is a pain in the ass for most of us and so we take liberal verbal shortcuts. I take many of your points in mind every day when I’m writing now (a passing grade in an undergrad course in Technical Writing at pretty much any Community College in the dumbed-down USA will still do that for you), but there has to be a limit.

    • malthuss November 7, 2017 at 3:55 pm #

      Racial awareness exists even in infants. Whats your point?

  53. FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 3:25 am #

    News of the International Center for Scientific Information, No. 237, October 9, 2021

    Carrying out the international program of deep space exploration and the possibilities of interstellar flights, the Academy of Science sent an expedition into the deep space consisting of two first class spacecraft “Taimyr” and “Ermak”.

    The expedition started on November 7, 2017 from the international Pluto-2 rocket in the direction of the constellation Lyra. The crew of the Taimyr Planet-craft included: captain and expedition chief A.E. Zhukov, flight engineers K.I. Falin and J.A. Pollak, navigator S.I. Kondratiev, cyberneticist P. Koenig, and physician E.M. Slavin. The Ermak Planet-craft performs the functions of an unmanned research device.

    The special purpose of the expedition is to reach the light barrier (absolute speed – 300 thousand km/s) and study the properties of space-time near the light barrier for arbitrarily varying accelerations.

  54. FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 3:47 am #

    Moscow, TASS. September 9, 2019.

    Today the Parliament of the Russian Federation, recognizing the outstanding achievements of the American Republic in fighting the common enemy, started debates regarding reinstating the World War II Lend-Lease program, this time in the opposite direction.

    • BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 4:27 am #

      We were never paid for those lend lease shipments.

      Time to pay up.

      brh

      • FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 4:33 am #

        Are you dumb or something? I have many times supplied a link to information in the Western Press how Russia has paid Lend-Lease in FULL!

        • BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 4:34 am #

          We never saw a dime.

          • FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 4:36 am #

            Well, people like you can’t find their own asshole under a bright sunlight!

          • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 11:35 pm #

            They did pay Kuhn Loeb the money they lent them for the Revolution. Now called Chase Manhattan I believe. You still haven’t asked yourself why Western Bankers funded Communism, have you?

  55. BackRowHeckler November 7, 2017 at 4:24 am #

    Just within the next month or two world oil demand will reach 100 million bpd for the first time ever. In the USA we are getting back up to where we were back in 2006-2007 at about 21 million bpd.

    It seems to me that demand is being met but I admit I don’t know the whole story, and wouldn’t understand it if I did.

    brh

    • FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 4:50 am #

      and wouldn’t understand it if I did

      don’t stress yourself too much…

    • Ol' Scratch November 7, 2017 at 6:37 am #

      It just means the oil producers are pumping as fast as they can using the latest technologies to keep servicing their debt. The oil business is highly leveraged and dependent on reported profits to reassure investors just to keep going. It’s also the only thing that keeps the remnants of the industrial economy alive and kicking for whatever time it has left remaining )not much). Demand is also falling relative to growing population levels for obvious reasons: consumers are tapped and can no longer support “happy motoring” the way they did 20-30 years ago.

  56. FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 4:30 am #

    The Rise of American Conciseness

    DNC’S Donna Brazile dedicated her book to patriot Seth Rich, whose death made her fear for her own life

    newsweek.com/donna-brazile-book-seth-rich-dnc-murder-conspiracy-702838

    It’s not about the sword, and not even about the matador, but about the readiness – or not! – of us all to play the role of a bull in the arena!

    • outsider November 7, 2017 at 9:36 am #

      Will the investigation into the strange murder of Seth Rich now be reopened? Just recently the FOX news talk show hosts, Hannity in particular, were told in no uncertain terms to quit talking about Seth Rich.

      • FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 10:56 am #

        Depends on who will win this civil war – We, The People or the Deep State in alliance with Shallow Media.

  57. Pucker November 7, 2017 at 6:18 am #

    Obama used to send Pucker canned emails exhorting Pucker to “join the movement.” And if Pucker did whatever they wanted Pucker to do, Pucker would be enrolled in a Raffle. And if Pucker won, Pucker would get a chance to meet Obama. Pucker wonders if anyone ever really won the Raffle?

    • Ol' Scratch November 7, 2017 at 6:31 am #

      Depends on how you define “won.” Meeting Obama would hardly be a prize in my book. He’d probably pick your pocket in the process.

  58. Pucker November 7, 2017 at 6:21 am #

    Stick a “To Do” sticker next to her smoldering vagina.

  59. FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 10:51 am #

    Today is a Hundredth Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Counter-Revolution!

    This is indeed a great day – it is enough to get acquainted with the plans of the all-powerful Colonel House on the radical reconstruction of the world, the crowning point of which was the destruction of the Empires, including the Austro-Hungarian, Germanic, Ottoman and, among other things, the Russian too.

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_M._House

    And from this point of view, the Great October Socialist Revolution saved Russia from complete fragmentation and the Russian people from no less than total extermination ala what was awaiting the citizens of the Russian Federation in 1991 if Gorbachev had stayed in power for several more days.

    Well, what was waiting for the Russian Orthodox Church after the February Revolution, we can now see with our own eyes in Ukraine.

    The thesis of the counter-revolution requires a separate explanation.

    The generalization of the experience of the GOSR and the experience of the collapse of the USSR goes not only in space but also in time, which makes one consider as a single process the Great Dutch Revolution, then the English bourgeois, the Great French, a series of revolutions in the late 1840s and finally the February revolution in Russia, which did not become Great only thanks to the Great October Socialist Revolution (GOSR).

    The population of Russia did not begin to reduce to just 15 million people, as it was planned in 1913 and 1993. Moreover, the USSR’ society has preserved its traditional character, and the Russian Church, despite persecution, shielded from Western Gnosticism by the protective fetters of the CheKa-OGPU-KGB, has retained its doctrine that constitutes its essence.

    • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 2:41 pm #

      The True Russian Church rejects Communism hook, line, and sinker. The fake Communist Church – which had some good men in it – loved it or pretended to love the regime for the sake of the faithful.

      You are one of the bureaucrats whom the good had to please, one of those who pretended to love Christ in order to win power.

  60. volodya November 7, 2017 at 10:55 am #

    K Dog, There’s been civilizational collapses before but it may as well be the road untraveled because it’s not within living memory and because history is seen as boring and irrelevant especially by present day ruling elites and the “men of action” at the top of the food chain.

    If history is any guide, what happened in prior collapses is that towns and cities were depopulated when people fled to the country-side looking to fortify hilltops. Abusive elites were overthrown and replaced. This happened in places all over the world.

    It takes a long time to recover. It took centuries for the middle east and eastern Mediterranean to pull itself back up from the collapse of the 12th Century BC. And it took Europe more than a thousand years after the Roman collapse in the 5th Century AD. It took until the 18 Century for travel to become as easy as it was during the height of the Empire.

    • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 11:10 am #

      I’ve been wondering how useful it would be to read up on what happened in Poland after it was occupied by the Nazis in WWII. This is a task far easier said than done. In such a project I’d be looking at how people reacted. This is only a thought experiment. I don’t speak polish and imagine the richest source would be old and probably quite rare newspapers and they would be in European attics.

      A collapse novel I read recently portrayed people as initially behaving themselves and cooperating with each other after things break down and before hungry bellies changed the equation. As for prepping, I suspect some who think they are doing a good job prepping will find that their efforts were monumentally pathetic once collapse actually sets in.

      Has anyone actually ever done a detailed study on what happens to groups of people facing an ongoing crisis?

      • volodya November 7, 2017 at 11:39 am #

        I think you’re right, that people massively underestimate the difficulty of growing enough food to feed a family and especially the sheer quantity of knowledge it takes to grow crops and raise animals.

        I’ve read people on blogs like this with a vegetable garden thinking this will get them through. Not by a long shot IMO. man does not live by greens alone. I have family that were farmers in the 1930s-1940s and I’ve gotten their accounts of the perils involved.

        The accounts of WW2 Europe would give an idea of the chaos engulfing a country and how hard it would be to conduct a farming routine. What I’ve learned is that on a farm, if you don’t want to starve to death, you have to do what needs to be done when it needs to be done. Otherwise animals die, the weather changes with the seasons and it’s game over. Very hard to maintain routines with the country-side crawling with soldiers and tanks.

        • malthuss November 7, 2017 at 4:06 pm #

          I saw a short documentary of starvation in Holland during WW2 and a boy licking the lid of a soup pot.

          People did not prepare, or most didnt sell their jewelry, art, etc etc and buy store-able food.

          Potatoes can be grown in a bale of hay.
          Bee hives can be kept on a roof.

      • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 12:03 pm #

        “Has anyone actually ever done a detailed study on what happens to groups of people facing an ongoing crisis?”

        Yes, Dog, it is called “History”….

        • volodya November 7, 2017 at 12:15 pm #

          I’m not a historian but I do read a lot of history ie what you find at the library, but what I’ve seen is the “great man” version of history or accounts of the broad sweeping events.

          But I think what K dog is getting at is something more granular, specific happenings surrounding villages or towns.

          When I said that cities and towns were abandoned in favor of easily defended hill-top forts it’s too broad a generalization. I think K dog was thinking of something more in the weeds.

          • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 12:44 pm #

            Exactly, consider even now when we have a disaster what do you get. You get an excited bozo in a news station windbreaker trying to stand up in high wind. You don’t get a camera showing how people are acting in grocery stores or how they are handling their personal dramas. What goes on in the ensuing weeks and months afterward? A trip to Puerto Rico could give some answers but news people and humanitarians focusing on basic help going there will have other priorities than looking at the situation scientifically.

            What ‘hard choices’ do the people have to face and how do they respond? How does social organization change?

            History is written after the fact and while important can’t tell us only some things. It is distorted and while it may be true when not a lie it only represents a particular perspective.

            Exploring my questions could be as important as a fifty pound sack of beans after TSHTF.

          • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 2:33 pm #

            The people are hopeless without a caring Elite. And they in turn without Great Men to lead them.

            The care, concern, and compassion (all limited resources) that are given constantly to Blacks – they should be going to our own People. So of course they are lost, sick, ugly, hopeless, crazy and dying – their own Elite despise them and trying to destroy them while the Left applauds wildly and jeers at the honkies.

            Thus Trump bypassed the Elite and went right to the People – an unforgiveable sin in the blinkered eyes of the Elite. If only Trump was Greater and really had Vision. But he has a bit and is something of a Great Man – but not the One we’re waiting for.

        • elysianfield November 7, 2017 at 1:22 pm #

          Dog and V,

          Well, I can accept that. However, “history” for me is best found in first person accounts…they exist, but are not always popular nor easy to find.

          Just yesterday finished a book, described as an “oral history” of the use of women in combat by the Soviets in the Great Patriotic War”, called the “Unwomanly Face of War”…won the Nobel Prize for Literature…guaranteed to bring tears to your eyes.

          From this type of history you can divine the truth.

      • Janos Skorenzy November 7, 2017 at 2:23 pm #

        Indeed. Sorokin of Harvard was a towering figure, a Russian Orthodox thinker who has been forgotten since Society doesn’t want to hear what he has to say.

        barnesandnoble.com/w/man-and-society-in-calamity-pitirim-a-sorokin/1126528680?ean=9781412814492

        In short, it will bring the best and the worst out of people, sometimes the same person. Most women will sell their bodies if they get hungry enough. Some will eat the dead. Some will kill others to eat them as in The Road. Others will practice heroic charity. But you have to have something in order to give it – and once you give it, you have nothing left to be charitable with.

  61. San Jose November 7, 2017 at 12:57 pm #

    Book suggestion: Robert Sapolsky, “Behave: The Biology of Humans at our Best and Worst.” This is the best non-fiction book I’ve read this year. Sapolsky is a neurobiologist at Stanford.

    Any book suggestions from you guys? (I got an Amazon card for my birthday.)

    Jen in San Jose

    • volodya November 7, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

      I just read the memoirs of Eugen Dollman, an SS Lt Colonel in Rome during WW2. He was a scholar, fluent in Italian, joined the Nazi party and became a German-Italian interpreter to Italian and German fascist and aristocratic elites. Fascinating book. .

      • volodya November 7, 2017 at 1:09 pm #

        Obersturmbannführer – this was his actual rank in the SS. Misspelled his surname, should be Dollmann.

    • MrTibbs November 7, 2017 at 3:10 pm #

      “Janesville: An American Story.”

      -T

    • malthuss November 7, 2017 at 3:17 pm #

      in 3000 words or less?

    • akmofo November 7, 2017 at 8:52 pm #

      Dr Zach Bush will have a book out soon. Until then YouTube is your friend.

  62. FincaInTheMountains November 7, 2017 at 1:12 pm #

    Peter Drucker en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Drucker once wrote that if the revolutions in Netherlands, Britain and France were liberal revolutions, then the American Revolutionary War for Independence was a conservative counterrevolution – just like Russian Great October Socialist Revolution (and maybe great Trump counter-Revolution of 2016)

  63. volodya November 7, 2017 at 1:20 pm #

    K dog, a long time ago I read some of Solzhenitzen’s stuff. I think it was in the Gulag Archipelago that he said that survival was a matter of getting an extra spoonful of fish soup everyday and properly drying out your socks every night.

    What folks cannot or maybe will not contemplate is how close to the line things can get when the going gets tough. Survival could come down to that sack of beans you mentioned. What Katrina showed us (and Puerto Rico too) was that it does no good to be doing all the bureaucratic shit if clean water wasn’t getting to people that needed it. You can maybe live a few weeks without food but you need water pretty much every damn day. And then after about a week food becomes a dire imperative.

    • K-Dog November 7, 2017 at 11:13 pm #