Change They Don’t Believe In

The unfortunate consequence of not allowing the process of “creative destruction” to occur in banking and Big Business is that the historic forces behind it will seek expression elsewhere in the realm of politics and governance. The desperate antics of …

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She’s Back!

And so, from the dormant volcano that is American politics, out comes Hillary, like Rodan the Flying Reptile pretending to be Granny Goose. Now that she is officially flapping around the electorate, the excitable mainstream press reports the initial caw-caw-cawing …

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The School of Globalism

“…we may be headed into a world where capital is abundant, deflationary pressures are substantial and demand could be in short supply for quite some time.”

—Lawrence Summers, former Secretary of the Treasury

Professor Summers must be reading Ben …

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April 2015

Kingdom-Tower 1

I waited until April 2 because this is no joke.
Behold the proposed new Kingdom Tower for Jeddah, Saudi Arabia — at one full kilometer in height, about twice the size of New York’s new Freedom Tower. The  Kingdom Tower …

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The Way Out

It’s not what most people think: a return to some hypothetical “normality,” with the ghost of Ronnie Reagan beaming down like a sun-god under his lopsided pompadour, and all the happy self-driving GM cars toodling back and forth from WalMart-to-home …

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Kicked to the Curb

I begin to understand why the death of Ferguson, Mo, teen Michael Brown sent such shock waves through America last year. He truly symbolized our country: an overgrown, oafish, wannabe thug making one bad choice after another until his final, …

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American Amoeba

The money-moving world waits on tenterhooks for the Wednesday appearance of America’s oracle, Janet Yellen, to step out of her grotto and state whether or not she feels twinges of patience. Wikipedia notes that Pythia, the original priestess of …

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truthinesslessness

Nothing is stable, nothing is straightforward, everything is fixed, and nothing is fixed. O nation of busboys and WalMart greeters, awake and sing!

Can an empire founder on sheer credulousness? After last Friday’s jobs report, I think so. For a …

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The Garden, Third Year, 2014

   Click here if you want to start back in 2012 for the very beginning of the project

The chickens were the focus of the 2014 project. The basic box was up at the end of 2013. It needed to be …

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March 2015

Google 1

Behold the proposed new Google headquarters, Mountain View (Silicon Valley), CA. Google, of course, has enough walking around money in its deep pockets to indulge in the most fantastic architectural status stunt — meaning that the diminishing returns of great …

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Heroes and Villains

The poet W.B. Yeats was right in 1919 when he said the center cannot hold, as if, following the first great industrial slaughter of modern times, he discovered the lethal vacuum at the center of modernity itself. There was a …

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KunstlerCast 265 — Yakking With Futurist Eric Garland


Futurist, Strategic Analyst, podcaster, and rock and roll musician Eric Garland, talking with JHK from the troubled heartland city of St. Louis, Mo. Among other things, Eric and I talk about the Big Box shopping model, the contagion …

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How Goes the War?

Oh, you didn’t notice that World War Three is underway, actually has been for more than year? Well, that’s because most of it has been taking place in the banking sector, which for most people is just an alternative universe …

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Welcome to World War Three

In case anyone didn’t get ISIL’s message from their latest video in which 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians have their heads sawn off, here it is: “We’re executioners, not warriors.” Those gouts of blood spilled on a Libyan beach amount to …

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All Twerked Out

Bruce Jenner’s journey to transgender sainthood was interrupted Saturday on the road to Malibu, and with it perhaps the Kardashian Klan’s hopes and dreams for achieving supremacy of the known universe. All of America was twerking at the news because …

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KunstlerCast 264 — Conversation with an Aesthete — JHK Yaks with “Lord Whimsy”

Conversation with an aesthete. Graphic designer, blogger, dandy, and artist Allen Crawford (a.k.a. “Lord Whimsy”) yaks with JHK about the state of male presentation in America, the arc of cultural collapse, art, and Walt Whitman — he is the …

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February 2015

Borg5

Here come the borgs! Introducing the new US Federal Courthouse in Salt lake City designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners. They’ve really caught that old security state spirit in a building that looks uncannily like the computer server that contains …

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Apocalypse Now and Forever

As a political psychoanalyst I find the Super-bowl halftime show the best concise index of how psychotic American culture is becoming from year to year, and the 2015 version signaled a complete break from reality, a nightmare of twerking robots …

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The Broken Template

The more detached from reality American culture becomes the more strictly ceremonial leadership gets, as illustrated by the raft of bromides Barack Obama floated past the assembled vassalage of government last week in another grand effort to avoid the necessities …

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A Solemn Pause

Events are moving faster than brains now. Isn’t it marvelous that gasoline at the pump is a buck cheaper than it was a year ago? A lot of short-sighted idiots are celebrating, unaware that the low oil price is destroying …

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KunstlerCast 263 — Yakking with Morris Berman


JHK yaks with cultural historian, social critic, and author Morris Berman about his new book, Neurotic Beauty: An Outsider Looks at Japan, and a lot of other topics around the crisis of Modernity. Berman’s previous books include the …

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The Clash of Civilizations

The big turnout in Paris was bracing but it also might reveal a sad fallacy of Western idealism: that good intentions will safeguard soft targets. The world war underway is not anything like the last two. Against neo-medieval barbarism, the …

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January 2015

Eyesore 1-15

Behold, another 80-story hotel / condo tower by the industrious Chicago architect Jeanne Gang for a site on the south bank of the Chicago River. I suggest this new style be labeled “architwerkture,” since it looks like a digitized schematic …

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A Cool Interval

Note: JHK’s 2015 Forecast is available now at this link: Forecast 2015 — Life in the Breakdown Lane

For the moment, while the racial grievances of 2014 have chilled on the polar vortex, and no unarmed black teens have been …

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Forecast 2015 — Life in the Breakdown Lane

“Don’t look back — something might be gaining on you,” Satchel Paige famously warned. For connoisseurs of civilizational collapse, 2014 was merely annoying, a continued pile-up of over-investments in complexity with mounting diminishing returns, metastasizing fragility, and no satisfying resolution. …

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