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Full Bore to the Vanishing Point

      Last evening at twilight I was driving my rent-a-car up Interstate Five north of Seattle with a vivid testicular fear of being trapped in the very metaphor of a failing society racing into a dark future. All around me loomed the monuments of an out-of-control financial credit Moloch – the tilt-up chain store boxes with their giant logos glowing against the distant craggy peaks of the Cascades (many of them active volcanoes which, like Mt. Saint Helens, might blow their tops any day). At every compass point sprawled the McHousing pods of American dream mortgage time-bombs silently blowing families to financial smithereens, and banks with them, including, incidentally last Friday, the state of Washington’s own Shoreline Bank just off I-5 north of Seattle, seized by the FDIC. My way was lighted, as darkness finally stole in, by the endlessly replicated dispensaries of fast food-dom (pizza-burgers-chicken-fries-and-shakes) provoking this nation of overfed clowns to ever-greater feats of gluttony, medical catastrophe, and bankruptcy. And, of course, these were my fellow-travelers in the perpetual stream of cars plying this great thoroughfare of the tragic western littoral, burning up gasoline that had traveled all the way from the sands of Abqaiq or from some sweltering platform off the Niger Delta, where dangerous, angry, armed men in Zodiac boats plot mayhem nearby among the mangrove thickets. Not to mention the row-upon-row of idle cars parked in the lagoons surrounding the countless malls and strip-malls and auto dealerships that flanked I-5 for fifty miles north of Seattle. Cars, cars, cars, as far as the eye could see where the sodium-vapor lamps cut through the crepuscular murk. Sasquatch was a no-show. But Sasquatch don’t drive.
      This was the week when the US housing fiasco got even more extra-special interesting as the Bank of America suspended mortgage foreclosures in twenty-three states, and the Connecticut Attorney General (Richard Blumenthal, who is running for Chris Dodd’s senate seat) declared a 60-day moratorium on foreclosures (a political ploy do ya think?). Also of interest, Ally Financial suspended foreclosures in twenty-three states – and note, by the way, that Ally is the mutant offspring of the bailed-out General Motors Acceptance Corporation (GMAC), which also spawned the infamous DiTech Mortgage finance company (remember those non-stop TV commercials a few years back) which specialized in jumbo NINJA loans (No Income No Job or Assets). A conspiracy theorist would be in nirvana with all this, but it was just plain vanilla fraud in a time when fraud was over-taking apple pie and Mom as the defining quality of our national character.
     The net effect of all this is that the real estate industry in America just got a whole lot more desperate on Friday.  What’s with suspending all these foreclosures? Generally it’s about the slovenly (and possibly felonious) paperwork associated with so many home loans doled out in the recent bubble years, above and beyond, you understand, the complete absence of due diligence in evaluating borrowers – but that aspect has been so well known for so long, and so blatantly ignored by the legal authorities that it has merely entered the realm of humorous American folklore like Br’er Rabbit and the Chickens – too quaint to prosecute. 
     This new subplot concerning the paperwork itself, however, complicates things more than anyone expected, and real suddenly. So eager were the originators to pump-and-dump mortgages – to write up loans and immediately re-sell them to the chumps at Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and elsewhere – that they got ludicrously sloppy. Instead of mortgage applicatons being signed by notaries, the lenders just set up signature boiler rooms where unauthorized factotums signed them by the forklift-load without anyone so much as glancing at the pages within. Whoops…. 
     Enter the lawyers for the foreclosees. Their mission: to either assist their clients in evading foreclosure, or at least stalling the process indefinitely, allowing said clients to occupy a property as a sort of court-sanctioned squatter possibly forever. For one thing, it’s probably cheaper to pay a lawyer a couple of thousand bucks to roll his hoop through the courts for a year than to actually fork over a $4,500 mortgage nut each month on an under-water five BR four bath vinyl-and-chipboard contemporary – with the possible bonus outcome of the house’s title becoming so hopelessly lost and unproduceable that two generations of title insurance investigators will squander their whole working lifetimes in fruitless searching… and by then, perhaps, the whole sordid, messy business will be forgotten, like an old forgotten patent suit filed decades ago by lawyers for a poor swindled nearsighted engineer, who has been pushing up daisies now in a lonely Michigan bone orchard since Alan Greenspan blew his last clarinet lick at the Five Spot. 
     The title insurance business will take a dim view of these monkeyshines, you may be sure, but by then they will be out of business, too. And then won’t it be fun imagining some future when every attempt to transfer property is just a shot in the dark… or else property won’t be transferred at all, at least not legally. It seems we’re developing a whole new and interesting relationship with the rule of law in this country. Increasingly, it’s become optional. And what you finally get when you opt for that is a lawless society where people simply grab what they want via the barrel of a gun and smash whatever gets in their way. Our nostalgia for the Wild West may suffer as this occurs and no one is able to live a settled secure life anymore in the USA.
     This new anarchy in the troubled housing / mortgage nexus comes at a very interesting time, too: just when the public is about to elect a new national legislature full of characters with a very squishy idea of the rule of law. Many of them conflate it with the theocratic rule of Jesus. Maybe Baptist ministers and snake handlers will start showing up in the probate courts to sort these matters out. America is increasingly looking like the saloon in one of the earlier installments of Star Wars, where the most improbable creatures mingle and frequently bust up the place for no apparent reason other than they felt like it.
     Coming back to Earth though, one can only see more Big Trouble ahead for the Big Banks in all this mortgage hugger-mugger, and of course the country as a whole. Sooner or later, somebody with a badge is going to demand to look inside their vaults and examine the paper they are hiding in there. And when that day comes, the truth will be revealed about the greatest self-swindling of any nation in the long, groaning history of the world. Nobody among the community of other nations will want to do anymore business with us – including the sale of any oil, and won’t that be a funky day?

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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 the four-book series of World Made By Hand novels, set in a post economic crash American future. His most recent book is Living in the Long Emergency; Global Crisis, the Failure of the Futurists, and the Early Adapters Who Are Showing Us the Way Forward. Jim lives on a homestead in Washington County, New. York, where he tends his garden and communes with his chickens.

465 Responses to “Full Bore to the Vanishing Point”

  1. mika. October 4, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    U.S. apologizes for STD experiments in Guatemala – msnbc.com – http://goo.gl/PsSw
    Government researchers infected patients with syphilis, gonorrhea without their consent in the 1940s
    Anyone care to guess when the US gov will issue apology to Canadians for secretly poisoning them with GMO food.

  2. John T Anderson October 4, 2010 at 11:12 am #

    Jim: The title of your piece reminded me of the classic chase movie, Vanishing Point, in which Barry Newman plays Kowalski, a Vietnam veteran bereaved by the death of his wife in a surfing accident, who leads the highway patrols of several Southwestern States on a grim chase, urged on by a blind radio DJ (Cleavon Little), until he finally runs (literally) into a roadblock of two bulldozers, going out in a ball of flame. This might be the fate of the U.S.A. as a whole, to go out with a bang rather than a whimper, and with our finger on the Big Button, we have the capacity.

  3. MoneyMouth October 4, 2010 at 11:16 am #

    Ah, finally something well written. But what could I possibly add? Well, thanks James, for another great post!

  4. Max October 4, 2010 at 11:16 am #

    “….since Alan Greenspan blew his last clarinet lick at the Five Spot.”
    Your rich and brilliant prose is a pleasant offset to the murky and bleak subject matter you command so well.
    Like me, I’m sure there’s a number of your readers who appreciated your reference to Greenspan’s early career adventures; perhaps when Hollywood decides to produce a film about this whole debacle, “The Five Spot” will be renamed “The Ayn Rand Cafe.”
    Well done as always, Sir!

  5. Colorado Greg October 4, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    “…America is increasingly looking like the saloon in one of the earlier installments of Star Wars, where the most improbable creatures mingle and frequently bust up the place for no apparent reason…”
    So well said! Thanks for another great post.
    Also, thanks for deleting the pea-brained rant that some nutcase had dumped here.

  6. conchscooter October 4, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    Can you spell quitclaim? The reason those famous “23 states” keeps getting brought up on this issue is that these are judicial foreclosure states. That would be states that require a judge to sign off on a foreclosure order.
    However if challenged (and the title companies are doing just that)the banks not only can’t produce the pen-and-ink mortgage agreement, they have had those lackeys sign off that the original documents were “lost.” They weren’t lost they were transferred without the benefit of being properly recorded to investment trusts.
    That means the mortgages are not properly recorded and can therefore be challenged.
    If you buy a foreclosed property you will not get title insurance because in those judicial foreclosure states the banks had no legal right to sell a property in which they had no legal standing.
    This is a state issue and is going to have a more revolutionary impact on this lawless state of ours than any number of survivalists with guns.
    Don’t beleive me? Ask yoursel;f why banks are stopping forclosure in judicial foreclosure states…No one else has asked themselves why and what happens next. Not even Jim Kunstler, which is disappointing, but he got closer than most.

  7. Cabra1080 October 4, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    This country is increasingly starting to resemble the shell of a world left behind in Stephen King’s Langoliers. Everything just kind of winding down in a grinding, creaking, tasteless tired old world. And then there’s that crunching sound coming from beyond the horizon…getting closer and closer…

  8. Shambles October 4, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    “. . .a vivid testicular fear. . .”
    Do they also glow in the dark?
    (Sorry, actually it’s a cool line.)

  9. doomster October 4, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    Excellent rant. It’s true that increasingly the rule of law only applies to some people, in some situations. If important wealthy individuals don’t want a law applied or a ruling enforced, or the courts don’t care about the people involved, the rule of law is often ignored.
    As for this mortgage mess, it will probably get a lot worse. By the way, if you like Kunstler’s work, check out this short doom-fiction about a future where Snickers bars cost $8: http://www.lesswaiting.com/inflation-future.shtml

  10. lsjogren October 4, 2010 at 11:18 am #

    eightm lets out a lot of sputum, but where is the backup for any of that?
    First of all, the point about most office workers being superfluous. What is the basis for that assertion?
    Now if you identify specific groups of office workers who perform nonproductive tasks, that would provide some actual factual basis for such an assertion.
    For example, one could point out that office workers who are involved in the creation of derivative financial products which did not provide any value-added, in fact were destructive financial instruments that were a major factor in the financial meltdown, that would provide some substance.
    I would expect there were hundreds of thousands of office workers who were employed in such nonproductive enterprises.
    But I really question the broad assertion that most office workers do not serve a purpose. In the financial service industry, those who administer my credit card transactions certainly serve a purpose. Those who administer my auto insurance, those who administer my IRA account, certainly they serve a purpose.
    And what about all the office workers that do the paperwork for manufacturing industries? Certainly at least a large share of them serve a purpose.
    Most likely there are many superfluous office workers in areas like health care and education, but certainly a good share of the office workers do perform work that needs to be done.
    The next beef I have is with this childish trantumizing against “capitalism” (while conveniently not defining what you mean by that term. (many of the sectors of our economy which run on free market principles perform well, e.g. information technology, while our most destructive sector of the economy, the financial sector, is essentially a government-controlled oligarchy with only superficial traces of free-market capitalism.)
    After reading to that point in such a piece of drivel, I believe it is foolhardy to waste any time reading further.

  11. Colorado Greg October 4, 2010 at 11:21 am #

    Take note: the pea-brain rant has been removed.

  12. walt October 4, 2010 at 11:29 am #

    It is interesting how the radicalized yokels of the Tea Party see law more as a cultural relic, something to invoke against the unreal Americans like Obama, Pelosi, and ACORN. In effect, the hyper-complex edifice of modern industrial civilization has developed an auto-immune disorder. Our national self-attack is, in some ways, a temper tantrum that virtually demands a strong father figure to punish our errant ways. Sarah Palin’s “Mama Grizzly” trope fits into this pattern, too.
    Let’s not kid ourselves: law is better than no law at all. When the man on the white horse comes to restore order, chances are he’ll look more like Charles Koch than Hugo Chavez. I’ve already made my peace with the eventuality: no more bumper stickers or political banter with neighbors, and less transparency overall. The scapegoats in our national passion play are likely to be folks like us. It won’t happen as soon as Kunstler thinks but when it does, we’ll marvel at inventiveness of our hellraisers. Our petro-idyll is over and the correction has just begun.

  13. judetennessee October 4, 2010 at 11:29 am #

    Went down to NOLA this weekend for first time since Katrina. The parts of the city I saw were richer, whiter and more expensive than pre-deluge. Of course, the crime rate is horrific, every thing is under triple lock and key but the climate was divine, food enchanting, booze was cheap so it was “Laissez Les Bon Temps Roulez”.
    Lost my good paying govt job in Albany and have returned to Memphis (the Detroit of the South) to lick my wounds and live cheaply. I read The Long Emergency when it was first published and was taken with how civil the NE would be during the unraveling. Well, civil it may be, but I saw enough abandoned buildings and dreams in upstate NY to realize that it is a national (or international) overshoot and we will all go down together except for the rich.
    Everyone I have spoken with is angry, in denial and wants a quick fix without any personal sacrifice. It may get ugly one of these days soon or they may just exterminate the poor. Who needs them anyhow? Ooops, I forgot, I am one of them now. @_@

  14. Paul Kemp October 4, 2010 at 11:30 am #

    Snake handlers?! That cracked me up. Jim, you’re in good form today. I’ve got to say, your style has all these unpredictable flare that I used to enjoy in Hunter S. Thompson’s writing, but from a more — shall we say? — grounded perspective.
    Great one today — and worth the wait.

  15. GetAbike October 4, 2010 at 11:32 am #

    Thanks for deleting that P.O.S. comment that was up earlier and replacing it with the real deal- Mondays just are not the same without prose that remind us that “It seems we’re developing a whole new and interesting relationship with the rule of law in this country. Increasingly, it’s become optional.”
    The bright side to a collapse of law & order is the opportunity to produce moonshine unhindered with a strong market selling to those of us who can’t cope with the present, while foggily remembering the glorious past we experienced driving down the Kings Hiway.
    Enjoy Seattle!

  16. Rod October 4, 2010 at 11:33 am #

    It’s a dreary, rainy day here in the suburbs of Philly and I’m home with a chest cold. But there to perk me up is Jim’s Monday entry. And boy is it outstanding!!! My chest is clearing already!

  17. networker October 4, 2010 at 11:36 am #

    Scarlet Runner – re your now-vanished comment about planting garlic: I am doing the exact same thing! Plus I just got several yards of composted manure to shovel around. Life is good 🙂
    Wardoc, just a small reminder re your own now-vanished comment: us wimmin belong to ourselves. And we lock and load too.
    Kiwi Nick said, on last week’s entry:
    “Perhaps I should mention the 21-hour failure of Virgin Blue’s Reservation/Checkin system (IEEE article)”
    Just wanted to point out the comments section from an article about the Jet Blue meltdown here:
    It almost word for word describes what I was talking about all last week (and the week before, ad nauseum arguing with Asoka) = “Value Engineering”!
    As for Seattle, I once lived there for ten years, the cost of living going up every one of those years. It also sits on the convergence of three tectonic plates, and the quake of 1996 was enough to get me jump started to leave there.

  18. alohavagabond October 4, 2010 at 11:37 am #

    The announcement by Bank of America and the other lenders has nothing to do with the origination and creation of all the bad loans out there. The ‘mills’ and ‘robo-signers’ have been employed in the FORECLOSURE process. You could have written a good story about that JHK.

  19. bailey October 4, 2010 at 11:40 am #

    Ooooh, my beloved hometown. You don’t sound anywhere near the place I grew up, in Magnolia, next to downtown where I lived for a dozen years. It just makes me so sad, but alas, life does change and you write about that fact, dontcha, adroitly, yep.
    This foreclosure mess, yes, what does it all mean; a class action suit ready to happen, a conspiracy theorists’ dream, perhaps, who knows, but i was grateful to read about Judge Arthur Schack who’s nailing those Robosigners and refusing to let the banks get away with it….
    Sad, fabulous rant per usual, Seattle, my old emerald city, where all we had to do was wait patiently for Glinda the good witch to tell us when to divest our options for optimal value….yes, the yellow brick road is paved with something otherly, yep, the party’s over, I get that, I’m feeling that, finito, capito.

  20. cbwim October 4, 2010 at 11:46 am #

    North of Seattle along Interstate 5 is pretty ugly Jim. Its also a consequence of geography with Pungent Sound on one side and the Cascades on the other. Portland to the south has fewer geographical bounds and more room to spread out in all directions. What has been covered in all of these flat, low lying areas is some of the best farmland in the Northwest.

  21. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 11:50 am #

    Isn’t Seattle the only town that built a monorail?
    A better and more energy efficient way to travel about town?
    Along with giving up any pretense at avoiding conflict-of-interest appearances, any pretense at obeying the laws for them, at the same time passing and enforcing more onerous laws for poor, the ruling class and their “elected” flunkies gave up any pretense of building in the public interest.

  22. redknot October 4, 2010 at 11:52 am #

    Blumenthal is running for Chris Dodd’s Senate seat. Not governor.

  23. GetAbike October 4, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    Good comment Walt.
    “no more bumper stickers or political banter with neighbors, and less transparency overall.”
    I have had that sense lately- it is something of the old “don’t talk religion or politics in public or in polite company”.

  24. Fissile October 4, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    You don’t need anyone with a badge to go poking around in bank vaults to see the blatant fraud that has taken place in the US real estate market these past 20 years. I recently had a job where one of my duties was to visit the county deed vault to look up property and mortgage records. What I routinely found there was astonishing. Here is just one example: 30 year mortgages granted with just 10% down payment. The same day of the closing, the home “owners” receive a revolving home equity line of credit that drops there total equity to 5% or less! Thousands of houses sold, for all practical purposes, with no money down. When my parents bought their first house in 1974, they had 45% down payment, both had jobs, and the bank refused to issue a mortgage unless they could come up with a minimum of 50% down payment. Come to think of it, no one really wants people with badges looking into the US real estate/mortgage industry. If the laws were enforced, half the people in the US would end up in jail.

  25. ozone October 4, 2010 at 12:01 pm #

    Yeah, Baby!
    …Meanwhile, those with political instincts resembling the teabaggers are desperately pointing fingers outward; unaware that [as a collective society] we’ve defrauded and debased our OWN selves! (Just to be clear; I’ve been debased since about… oh… forever. ;o)
    Sure, we’ve had a lot of help from a constant stream of assholes who just wanted to sell us shit, but they didn’t make us buy it. (They just looked for the best way to “set the hook”.)
    Loved the comment on lawlessness (and yes, the price will be beyond present dullard’s imaginings; voodoo economics was only the beginning). Everything has laws and anomalies that require serious attention. Now we’re in the business of mightily striving to ignore them. There’s always a doom awaiting for such profound foolishness.
    Wardoc (et al.) should be listened to. His scenarios are IMHO the most likely upshot to all this wilfully delusional behavior. (Christ-on-a-crutch, teenagers that don’t even know how to use a simple CAN OPENER??? There’s your “central indicator”, ladies and gentlemen. What do YOU think is going to happen to these corpulent, coddled creatures?)
    BTW,crepuscular! Diggin’ the twilit scene. I’ve only seen that word used a couple times; nice one, JHK.

  26. envirofrigginmental October 4, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    No one can describe the abject misery of the “asteroid belt” of crap that encircles every North American city better than you can James. Bravo!
    I once heard James Sterling refer to Mississauga’s Square One mall (much like every other suburban mall built in the past 40 years) as a ship sitting in an oceanic gravy of parking, encircled by multi-lane thoroughfares that require one’s life to be taken into one’s hands in order to cross by foot.

  27. Fokwolf October 4, 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    Great meeting you last night James. I for one know that the pacific northwest is wall to wall big box stores and suburbs and car dealerships.
    And no one wants to tell the truth about what is going on, and where the country is headed. In fact, the whole “growth paradigm” frees any politician from asking if we are heading in the right direction. The country could be totally F**ked up, but as long as we have growth, it’s good.
    The housing crisis was caused by greed (money for nothing). So when you hear the Tea Baggers and the republicans talk about the entitlements (all those people getting money for nothing), ask them how many welfare recipients are too big to fail and can bring an economy to it’s knees.
    There’s a lot of complex problems plaguing this world. We’re not going to fix them before oil supplies dwindle (and with it populations and economic activity). The longer we delay transitioning to local economies, the harder it’s going to be. my $.02

  28. Desertrat October 4, 2010 at 12:06 pm #

    Well, lessee: The complaints in the essay seem to speak to waste, gluttony, lying, cheating and stealing. All thesse have come about under the alleged rule of secular law.
    Given the Bible’s strictures against waste, gluttony, lying, cheating and stealing, maybe we’d be better off with a bunch of Bible-thumpers running things for a while?
    Ah, well. Probably wind up with Islam Lite.

  29. Mike October 4, 2010 at 12:14 pm #

    Reading this blog is the only thing I look forward to on Monday. What does that say about my life?
    Anyway, everything you are saying rings very true, but it amazes me how resilient this house of cards seems to be. I am suffering from huge cognitive dissonance now. I have to go to work and pretend that what I am doing even matters one bit. All of my colleagues act as if the project we are working on is the only thing that will save humanity, and I am having a hard time hiding my feelings about the relative importance of our work.
    On one hand, I have to feed my family, and probably most importantly, provide health insurance for my family. On the other hand, it all seems so damned pointless. I find myself wishing that everything would just collapse so that I can live in reality rather than living a farcical life. Of course, my family and friends just claim that I am being negative and they are tired of hearing my crap. Seriously, I think I may need some therapy. Apologies for the rambling, I think I just needed to vent amongst a group of people that might understand.

  30. networker October 4, 2010 at 12:17 pm #

    wage, the Seattle monorail is extremely limited in it’s geographical scope. It hardly goes anywhere, and does pretty much zip, nada, for the locals. The tourists seem to like it though.

  31. asoka October 4, 2010 at 12:17 pm #

    Last evening at twilight
    Getting dark round about twilight, darkness coming, Twilight the movie, vampires
    I was driving my rent-a-car up Interstate Five north of Seattle with a vivid testicular fear
    Fear in one of the most vulnerable areas of the male anatomy… vivid fear
    of being trapped in the very metaphor
    Driving north of Seattle toward Bellingham, right past Conner, home of Tom Robbins, the king of metaphors… but TRAPPED by the metaphor, no escape, vivid testicular fear, darkness coming…
    of a failing society racing into a dark future.
    Failing, as in: not succeeding. Ignore eight consecutive months of job creation in the private sector. Ignore the fact that we did not have a massive collapse of the banking system as JHK predicted. Ignore that the Dow did not go to 4,000 as JHK predicted. Just emphasize, over and over again, week after week, that the future is DARK and fearful and uncertain.
    All around me loomed the monuments
    The monuments were not simply present. They LOOMED, in an overpowering way that makes us small, insignificant, powerless, victims.
    of an out-of-control
    Careening, irrational, about to crash, death, destruction, etc.
    financial credit Moloch
    Not a system which helps people out by providing credit. No, a MOLOCH, a tyrannical power demanding human subservience, nay, demanding human sacrifice. Terrifying!
    – the tilt-up chain store boxes with their giant logos glowing
    Tilt-ups are stable structures… but suspiciously they have GIANT LOGOS, and they are glowing! What else glows? Ah, yes, radioactivity! The tilt-ups are poisoning us, causing our eventual death.
    against the distant craggy peaks of the Cascades (many of them active volcanoes which, like Mt. Saint Helens, might blow their tops any day).
    Nature is far away, distant, wild and craggy. Not only craggy, but explosive, dangerous. Volcanoes and hot springs could supply up to 25 per cent of America’s power needs, energy experts have said. But today we need to be afraid because, damn, they could BLOW THEIR TOPS ANY DAY! We are so fucked!
    That is just the first sentence of today’s essay, FULL BORE TO THE VANISHING POINT (I forgot to analyze the fear level in FULL BORE and the existential threat in VANISHIING POINT), but suffice it to say my adrenalin is pumping, as I type on my laptop, hiding under my bed.

  32. LaughingAsRomeWasBurningDown October 4, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    I too immediately flashed back to that white Challenger screaming across the desert… Sort of a precursor to Mad Max with more existentialist angst.
    Sasquatch don’t drive.
    Good writing this week, thanks.

  33. smithers October 4, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    Actually, GMAC didn’t spawn diTech. It acquired Ditech. It seemed like such a nifty idea at the time !

  34. LaughingAsRomeWasBurningDown October 4, 2010 at 12:23 pm #

    Whoa, my buddy asoka is still at it? Not sure your analysis there is right on, but hold fast my friend, hold fast.

  35. asoka October 4, 2010 at 12:26 pm #

    CORRECTION: right past La Conner, home of Tom Robbins

  36. Consultant October 4, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

    I think that’s where we are headed under the pull of Republicans and the Tea Party. Also, the utter fecklessness of most Democrats in office.
    The Republican creed seems to be, if we can’t control it, let’s just blow that sucker up (and “us” along with it)!

  37. asoka October 4, 2010 at 12:32 pm #

    Laughing, I am not just “holding fast” …
    I am thriving… and enjoying every moment of life, as we head full bore to the vanishing point.
    What an exciting ride!
    So full of sounds and colors this carnival called life!

  38. zen17 October 4, 2010 at 12:34 pm #

    Great post this week Jim,
    time for us all to get ourselves in order. Get the body healthy (learn to breathe, eat healthy food, grow stronger) Get the mind calm (turn off the TV, go outside and connect to the natural world)
    It is not going to get better, you must do the work on yourself if you want to navigate the challenges.

  39. Puzzler October 4, 2010 at 12:36 pm #

    Jim, it was great seeing you in Bellingham last night. Thank you for the best two hours I’ve spent in a long time.
    I hope everyone enjoying this blog appreciates all the hard work you put into posting great essays here every week. We left Village Books around 6 pm last night while you were still signing books. You then had to drive two hours to Seattle, work in some sleep, and somehow write this morning’s essay and still get it posted this morning. Bravo!

  40. fallout11 October 4, 2010 at 12:37 pm #

    Conchshooter said: “No one else has asked themselves why and what happens next. Not even Jim Kunstler, which is disappointing, but he got closer than most.”
    Actually, someone already has, Karl Denninger over at The Market Ticker. He’s been cataloging the charades and developments for some time now.
    I mention that JP Morgan/Chase has joined the 23-state skid-do bandwagen as well.

  41. ozone October 4, 2010 at 12:55 pm #

    I can certainly empathize (having torn up a fair share of ecological reality).
    Just a quick note. I think you can alleviate this depressive disquietude by preparing yourself and your family for a demanding future. Think about future plans for getting to a different location if you don’t think your present one will be “viable”, and what you might need to make that happen.
    ….and ETC. (Food, shelter, transportation, security, etc.)
    I really believe doing something proactive for the benefit of you and your loved ones will make all the difference.
    All the Best

  42. gavin October 4, 2010 at 12:56 pm #

    I dont know why, exactly, but the last bit, “…and won’t that be a funky day?” made me laugh. Maybe it was the level of understatement given by use of the word “funky.”

  43. Smokyjoe October 4, 2010 at 12:56 pm #

    JHK ends with this warning:
    “Nobody among the community of other nations will want to do anymore business with us”
    Well, what do you know! Already happening:
    “The U.S. has fallen behind Brazil, China and India as the preferred place to invest, according to a quarterly survey conducted last month of 1,408 investors, analysts and traders who subscribe to Bloomberg. ”
    Simon Kennedy, “World Economy Decoupling From U.S. Returns as View”)
    Ironic that Bloomberg hosts this stuff on a server named “noir.”
    Noir times, these, with the Corn-Pone Nazis ready to ride roughshod over the rest of us. Pity is, that crap along I-5 won’t even make decent ruins.

  44. eselsea October 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm #

    While you are waiting to do your book signing at Elliott Bay Books on Tuesday, you need to take bus route 3 or 4 from downtown Seattle to its walkable neighborhood to the north, Queen Anne. There you will find mixed-use blocks on top on Queen Anne Blvd., as well as ZipCars parked in the lot next to a locally-owned dry cleaner. You’ll also find a food store that stocks nothing but locally-grown food.
    Yes, a car ride on I-5 from Seattle to Bellingham is as you describe, but there are many places in the Seattle area that exemplify the optimal lifestyle you advocate!

  45. Cash October 4, 2010 at 1:22 pm #

    I’ve heard enough accounts of the Great Depression from people that went through it to know it was an extremely shitty time. But for all the suffering IMO there was something good that came out of it. People learned habits of thrift and I think that helped put the economy on a sound footing. People learned to save for a rainy day because they knew that a “rainy day” wasn’t a theoretical concept. They’d gone without employment, money, food, clothes etc.
    Our idea of “poverty” is nothing remotely like what people endured back then. Large numbers were malnourished, sick and lived in tents and shacks.
    Nowadays you hear this nonsense that, gosh and golly, if consumers save it will depress the economy so we need to encourage spending instead of saving. Bullshit. Money saved does not disappear into a hole never to reappear. The money a person saves is the money that someone else borrows for a mortgage or a business line of credit. With no saving there is no investment.
    The long and short is that the longer that central banks artificially depress interest rates, the more it acts as a disincentive for people to put a few bucks in the bank. I don’t think that saving depresses economic activity, I think it does the opposite: it puts the economy on a sounder, more rational and sustainable footing.
    But unfortunately in today’s world the image of a “saver” is someone who is waiting to die, an arthritic granny making her labourious way to the bank with her walker and passbook, or alternatively an antisocial, germ phobic, paranoid obsessive that spends inordinate amounts of time organizing, cleaning and washing their hands. Not people that are fun to be with, happy, optimistic, life affirming and life embracing.

  46. jackieblue2u October 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm #

    YOU GOT IT EXACTLY RIGHT. you did not go on and on.
    your friends are in Denial.
    I fell EXACTLY the way you do. Your perceptions and intuitions are dead on.
    I find myself wishing that everything would just collapse so that I can live in reality rather than living a farcical life.
    If you need counseling it is not about this.
    Most people need counseling or someone to listen to them, and most people won’t even admit that.
    I am not one of the smart ones on this page, I just found JHK HOME FROM NOWHERE in the 80’s and have followed him since. He puts into words what I experience everyday in the USA, born and raised here since ’56. Sense things more than know facts, I learn some facts here. anyway…..
    You are not alone.
    Stick around there are some pretty smart folks on this page.

  47. montysano October 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    @ Fallout11, who said: “Actually, someone already has, Karl Denninger over at The Market Ticker. He’s been cataloging the charades and developments for some time now.”
    I like Denninger when he sticks to economics. When he wanders off into politics and (god forbid) cultural issues, he loses me. In fact, I’ve been banned from his Market Ticker forum (which is quite the birther fever swamp) simply for saying “Karl, I think you’re wrong”. Disappointing, but it’s his casa, eh?

  48. Andrew MacDonald October 4, 2010 at 1:43 pm #

    JHK’s pointing at the serious breakdown in our trust in institutions that’s well underway. All the more reason to be ramping up the trust levels down here at the street and neighborhood levels where we actually live, and where our day-to-day prosperity is going to increasingly come from as the system’s cracks yawn wider.
    It’ll come down to local, local, local and the more friends and systems you have in place there, the better.
    Thinking about local living

  49. jackieblue2u October 4, 2010 at 1:46 pm #

    I have 3 bikes. Buy stock in bikes and parts.
    They will be a large part of the future. As if we had any $$$ to do so.
    Mike I agree with ozone’s advice.
    and also get bikes to get around on.
    Harder times ARE coming.
    they are already here.
    Have a yard, plant a garden, which I can’t do.
    except for that :
    I live in as good of an area as possible for this scenario.
    Biggest problem is gangs. (Western California).
    They steal bikes and make meth. big time. And like to kill people, other gang members or just anyone to get initiated In to a gang.
    It is a growing problem. Hopefully you can find an area that doesn’t have too much of that.
    Great thread today. Yeah they’ve RUINED WASHINGTON STATE, farmland, pretty bad.

  50. lbendet October 4, 2010 at 1:47 pm #

    JHK, Good post today.
    Amazing how our biggest export around the world is government-sanctioned organized crime. Maybe we ought to stick a label on these transactions “USFW” (for finance and war). Since we stopped exporting manufactured goods this has become our new specialty and we call it the post industrial, service industry.
    What a racket, Goldman Sachs and the banksters build up credit and debt around the world and when the time is ripe for a new killing, a bubble can be heard a-poppin’.
    Morning Joe was interesting this morning. Erin Burnett announced that Iraqi oil is in boomtown season and the oil is so abundant and easy to get it’s just under everyone’s feet, there. –Not like the offshore oil in the gulf, they emphasized. Up 25% and counting. Occidental and all the usual suspect transnationals are about to cash in. The figure they used was around $1.6 trillion.
    Oh, and Joe was so pleased because he thinks we’re going to get paid back for the war. He could almost taste it. Now that’s pay-dirt.
    —Huh? It’s A-OK that we start a pre-emptive war and now expect to get paid back for the waste of blood and treasure, but I’m afraid its just about the treasure. As they were all chortling about this, I felt like sitting them down for a lesson in privatization vs. government, and I assure you this is just going into the pockets of a few. You won’t see Uncle Sam receiving the largesse. God only knows what flavor cool-aid these people are drinking, but I can only chalk it up to mass insanity on every level. And you know they are fine upstanding citizens who have values, you know like they go to church and all. All part of a system gone awry and can’t see beyond their own self interest.
    I also heard today that there will be investigations as to whether the financial meltdown was deliberate. Good luck with that folks, I’m sure it will all be swept under the rug. Unlike the S&L dry run for fraud, there have been almost no prosecutions and the banks were put under “receiverships” under Reagan. Can you imagine if Obama tried that? I don’t think my ears could survive the noise.
    I think other countries are catching on, as everyone involved in this orchestrated crisis is continuing unabated.
    It will be a sad day for us all when the next shoe drops.

  51. red October 4, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    “…we’re developing new and interesting relationships with the law…”
    That is the start of the breaking of most (if not all) of the existing promises, guarantees and laws pertaining to pensions, retirements, welfare systems, social security, etc. A myriad of social contracts WILL be broken. The future won’t really care about mortgages, foreclosures, underwriting, fraud and the like. The worst will be swept under the rug, forgotten, litigated into meaninglessness. You’ll only read about the fringes- the few cases successsfully brought to conclusion in a transparent fashion. The rest will be guided by fraud and deception. People’s attention will be directed elsewhere and once the money goes away, the incentive to claim damages will go away as well.
    One of your best efforts, JHK. Prose careening from one edge of the screen to the other. You place your bets, you make your preps. Hard to say if the final scene has one leaving the country, or hunkering down or flicking off the safety.
    I can’t help but think that Jim is having a blast- flying and driving around in the twilight. He’s too much of an old-style curmudgeon to admit it, though. But we all have front row seats on a hell of a show- a true reality show- and we all watch others dragged through the screen to play the roles they’ve unwittingly asked for.

  52. upstater October 4, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    The greater Seattle area is a suburban abomination… while there may be a FEW pedestrian and transit friendly areas in the city proper, it is all too little, too late.
    In the late 1960s, Seattle was given a pork barrel gift of a new rail transit system by then Senator Manguson. They had a small percentage match to get the billions of federal money and it was repeatedly voted down. The money went to Atlanta (where it built Marta, which is frozen in time and mostly confined to the city itself).
    Point is, such a geographically confined urban area as Seattle would have been an ideal place for transit. Note that if you go downtown, the rail yards just outside of King St. Station have been given over to all manner of sporting venues and parking garages. If passenger rail ever took off, they’d have to tear down the stadiums to have a coach yard for rail equipment (there is no room downtown whatsoever). It is stupidity beyond description.
    What it became in the intervening 40 years is a sprawling mess.
    And Obama wants to spend billions and billions for new and more highways.

  53. empirestatebuilding October 4, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    You missed a great time at the Warrensburg garage sale. The world’s biggest.
    Aimlow Joe was here.

  54. cato5555 October 4, 2010 at 2:09 pm #

    Being a center-left Democrat it’s pretty easy for me to take a swipe at laissez faire economics as the cause of our miseries, but give a listen. In the 1970’s the American Empire was seriously frayed. Humiliation in Vietnam, the Watergate revelations, persistent “stagflation”, the beginnings of rust belt industrial decline, all eventually followed by the stumbling of the Carter years, resulted in the election of the king of wishful thinking, Ronald Reagan. Instead of sober traditional conservatism which might have legitimately restored rightward thinking by way of balancing budgets, riding out inflation,however painful, and soberly reassessing American commitments and defense needs, we got supply-side, Star Wars,irresponsible deregulation of vital American industries, union busting, and finally “Morning in America”. And a nearly insane belief in tax cutting as a cure-all for every problem.
    Unabated spending unmatched by necessary revenues resulted in record deficits and national debt. The first President Bush made a courageous deal with Congress to raise taxes(and generally caught hell), and Bill Clinton raised taxes,very moderately, on the wealthy and we had a decade of very impressive job creation, balanced budgets, and signicant reductions in the debt. Then came W and I suppose the rest was inevitable.
    To my way of thinking the real threat to this country, and by extension the whole world, is not necessarily JHK’s Long Emergency or climate change or neo-liberal free trade, but the ignorance and irrationalism of the American electorate – to whom H.L. Mencken referred as the “booboisie”. We have an incredible inability to think about fundamental issues such as debt, deficits, and taxes; and much less do we have the ability or inclination to deal with more complex ones such as job creation, infrastructure, future energy crises, or unraveling our current financial fiascoes.
    I don’t know how many of you out there are atheists or agnostics, but it may be time to just get over it and start praying.

  55. LewisLucanBooks October 4, 2010 at 2:10 pm #

    Jim! Drop those cheese doodles and STEP AWAY FROM THE FREEWAY! Get out on some of those blue highways William Least Heat Moon is always writing about.
    If you want to see a neat little town, stop by. A main street (called Tower) that still has most of it’s early 20th century architecture intact without being so cutesy. The way the setting sunlight falls on the brick has the purity of an Edward Hopper painting. Amtrak still stops here at the renovated train station.
    Centralia is halfway between Seattle and Portland. Look for exit 82 and head east. The downtown is 2 1/2 miles off the freeway. Stay in the right hand lane. Yup, you have to fight your way through ‘restaurant row’ which is pretty awful. But you may notice that as the national chains have abandoned us, locals have taken over their spots.
    Make a left on Tower and there I am, right across the street from the Olympic Club (1903). Now a restaurant, micro-brewery, bed and breakfast, movie theatre and bar. Look for the blue neon “Books” sign, across the street. Roust me out and I’ll give you the ten cent tour.

  56. tzatza October 4, 2010 at 2:23 pm #

    “As they were all chortling about this, I felt like sitting them down for a lesson in privatization vs. government, and I assure you this is just going into the pockets of a few. You won’t see Uncle Sam receiving the largesse.”
    Wrrrrrrongo! Uncle Sam will tax any profits which any U.S. based company might make in Iraq. Uncle Sam always gets his.

  57. eightm October 4, 2010 at 2:25 pm #

    Another AX: WORK
    Take a look at all of those skyscrapers in New York City, Tokyo, Seoul, etc. What do you think all of those office workers actually “do” ? Do you really think they are actually producing anything ? Are they needed for anything except being a place holder – a figment of imaginary labor – work, to justify billions of dollars of money transfers amongst the already and only ever going to be rich ? The truth is work in general is no longer needed, is destined to become obsolete no matter what anyone says or thinks or desires.
    The calculation is easy to do: there are 200 million office workers worldwide, information workers, “knowledge” workers, research workers, “innovation”, and research and development and all of the other mega Bull Shit terms and expressions the modern economist love to talk about. So exactly what are they discovering – improving – creating ? Absolutely nothing except billions of dollars being robbed from the poor. But let’s look at it for what it really is: out of 200 million workers I would fanthom that only 1 out of 1,000 are creating anything, are really producing anything of lasting value, any real optimization, any real improvement, any real result, any real serialization of work as something that accumulates. But this is ok, the other 199 million are just running around in circles, they are essentially spinning their wheels, they are mostly just killing time and creating and solving imaginary problems, and playing the status game, office politics game, and creating useless meetings and every conceivable way to pretend to actually be working and doing something.
    But those 200,000 that are actually optimizing, that are improving the little work processes that are left to do, those guys there are setting the stage to eliminate at least each 100 jobs as a minimum. For what is all of this research, optimization, innovation worth if it doesn’t cut costs, which in the end really means cut jobs ? And cut costs they will, no matter how inefficient they are becasue it is only natural that processes can slowly be improved and optimized. So 200,000 workers (the only ones that are actually serializing work, accumulating lasting results) will eventually each cut 100 jobs, so another 200 million unemployed workers will appear in the near future.
    So the future of work is actually no work, hundreds of millions of unemployed, mass poverty, eventually starvation, thanks to the capitalists, success model of rich robbing everything from the poor. We need free salaries, and cheap rents since there will no longer be any possible work in the future. We need to get rid of the competition mentality, the me better than you idea, the idea of “earning” what you need, we need equality and everything must be furnished for free since automation and technology have essentially killed all possible work and will kill all work in the future.
    You don’t understand: you won’t be choosing “capitalism” or whatever, the forces at play are going all in the same direction no matter what you or anyone wants. Optimization, automation, chinese or south korean scientists – engineers automating factories, creating production shortcuts, etc. etc. This will trickle through and translate into less costs which means somewhere and somehow less money to workers or less work. No matter what, this world is going towards the end of work, work is no longer needed, I know many people for one reason or another have no work, have nothing to do, even if they wanted to, because the modern production process is all geared towards the elimination of work. We better get this straight and not buy all the BS justifications of the economists that say more productivity, more research etc. will create new jobs. And in fact these are exactly the items that are eliminating work. More productivity and more research will kill jobs, not create new jobs, unless you consider dog walking a new “kind of job”, a new “service job”…
    No matter where and how many people can build houses or cut the lawns (valid only in the US, most countries don’t have houses with lawns to cut, etc.) there is not enough work for too many people. We have huge excess capacity in all productive endeavors, Spain and the US, just to name 2 even very different countries built way too many homes and now have a glut of homes, the US may have 15 million empty homes, all of Europe from Lisbon to Moscow may have even more, they did all the right things, they built all the homes they could, but the system cannot support them without free salaries to millions of families that could use them.
    The right wing thugs like to pretend there are these magical solutions, “technology destroys jobs but creates more jobs than destroyed”, or “go somewhere else where they are looking for your manpower”, etc to put the blame on the unemployed, to put the blame on the victim and not on the system: we live in automatic economies, work is disappearing at an alarming rate, there is no magical solution. We need free salaries and cheap rents, government owned, because the government is the people, the government is the nation as a whole, is the only real value, the collectivity, the individual is an egotistical criminal that wants to rob from the poor, wants to beat up the weak and kick them out of work. A central government that gives what the people need, and a progressive government that will use all the excess productive capacity for progress, the future, like space exploration, millions of skyscrapers, a society where the common good, and not the individual good is cherished. Exploration of the solar system and then the stars and planets, thousands of rockets, the future of humanity, a future of science and discovery, of an advanced civilization that puts all of its energy to use for progress, for the advancement of everyone, to share with everyone, to go higher and higher and further and further. Capitalism is a stone age system for violent – ancient apes that like to fight and have huge egos.
    But this is exactly how the system is being set up to be: I started out talking about 200 million office workers worldwide in skyscrapers who do a kind of comic book, make believe work, all mostly office politics, time wasting, changes and counterchanges all in the name of making it seem like they are working. The japanese salaryman for example has to wait until 10 at night to go home because he cannot leave before his boss, because of status relationships, not because there is real work to do in an office for 12 hours a day. In the US many stay more hours in the office, to show how “dedicated” they are mostly to the status and power structures that are put in place, to avoid being singled out as lazy, since going home early is a sign of being lazing, since what actually is being produced, which is really nothing at all, is totally irrelevant, only the status and power relationship counts and has any meaning, etc. so they won’t be the next on the layoff list.
    The reason why so many millions can do no work at all in reality and get paid an essentially free salary, is because the economic system and its technology and energy resources has created a free ride: most work is automated, most endeavors can be accomplished easily, and in fact if they really wanted to optimize work you would have millions of more unemployed office workers, which will eventually happen anyway.
    The real labor that is left to do, like building the skyscrapers, like working 12 hour shifts in Chinese factories is paid as little as possible (200 to 800 dollars a month), any real work tends to be paid less and less worldwide, while a majority of free loaders can live off the huge excess capacity and productivity of the semi automatic economic system. Only a few million slaves are really needed to provide most of the goods, to a rich workless majority: this process will continue, more optimization means less work, more free loaders, and eventually even less slaves, since robots will do all the work.
    But we are still stuck with a moralistic, old fashioned, “you have to earn it” mentality when the economic system is telling us, this mode of thought no longer applies, the rules have changed, work is no longer needed, is destined to disappear whether you like it or not.
    Take a look at all of those unemployed in the US, in Ireland, in Spain, etc. There are millions of them and tell them you are all lazy, you all want to play the victims, you don’t want to baby sit, or paint homes, or “invent” a new line of work: as if millions of people can’t figure out and invent all of these new kinds of jobs and work that are waiting to be discovered.
    The Z80 microprocessor was designed by 2 top notch scientists (faggin, shima) in the 1970s and a few technicians in a one year period: maybe 10 man years, and that microprocessor, like many others has eliminated millions of jobs after 30 years. That is real work, productive work: we have millions of man years worldwide and the result is recession, pain, poverty, and everyone fighting everyone over breadcrumbs, a war between the poor.
    That is the trend, like or or not, no one can do anything about it: work is not needed, if a corporation can get the same output with fewer people they will go for it no matter what. And this talk about “marketable” skills, or “specialization” is a bunch of BS. They are always inventing some hot new “skill” that you have to have for some imaginary new “line of work” that has never existed for all of the time mankind has been on earth. I know, I have seen it in technology, most of this talk of specialization and hot skills is just an excuse to not hire anyone, because they are not up to the “challenge”, and since the challenge is ever changing and always impossible to meet, then it is always the workers fault, he doesn’t have the skills or ability. What crap, like for example they giving you a program with 10,000 lines of code that is completely not understandable (on purpose, so the original programmers had some leverage) and telling you to find the subtle – intermittent bug in a couple of days, etc. Or you having to double the sales target in two months, on products that were difficult to sale (mostly you had to have the right “political” and “people skills” connections to sale, etc.).
    Don’t buy all this BS of skills and technology and specialization. I can’t remember how many times companies switched back in forth saying one day, we need highly specialized workers in javacrap and the next day we need a global type who understands business and not specialization, so whatever the heck you were, you were always at fault, either specialized or too global, or too whatever idiotic term they invent to have leverage and power on the employees.
    Now, I agree that work isn’t disappearing all of a sudden, that there are segments like electric cars, some IT, wind power, some infrastructure, some new products, industries, health care machines and drugs (drug everyone into oblivion ?) etc. that will still need people, etc. But make no mistake, the general global trend is dead on with eliminating work as much as possible and also as fast as possible now that you have technological powerhouses like South Korea, Taiwan, some of China – India, the always present and still powerful JAPAN, etc. working on automating jobs away.
    Another trend in the long run is the whole disappearance of the corporation as an entity, there will no longer be many corporations understood as a group of people working towards a unified goal or production process: mergers and acquisitions are another method of killing jobs, each time a new company is absorbed by IBM or Microsoft, more people become redundant (you don’t need 2 marketing divisions do you ? or 2 R&D labs do you ?, etc. ) , and fewer and fewer big players gain more and more power.

  58. tzatza October 4, 2010 at 2:26 pm #

    “A myriad of social contracts WILL be broken.”
    And why is that? Because those who originally proposed those contracts and willed them into legislation KNEW

  59. tzatza October 4, 2010 at 2:30 pm #

    “A myriad of social contracts WILL be broken.”
    And why is that? Because those who originally proposed those contracts and willed them into legislation KNEW they were a fraud when they marshaled them into existence. But they didn’t care. They merely wanted your vote. They knew full well that they would be long gone when the bill came due.
    But what is truly amazing, in spite of the light that is being shone on past criminal acts, the current bunch of legislative criminals are promising even more unfunded candy. And far too many of the moronic voting public will line up to reelect these fucking creeps.

  60. Colorado Greg October 4, 2010 at 2:30 pm #

    Oh No! EightM is back!
    There goes the neighborhood!
    Pack it in, 8M, no one is listening.

  61. Colorado Greg October 4, 2010 at 2:33 pm #

    p.s. to EightM:
    Come to my farm; I’ll show you plenty of work to do. And we eat REALLY good.

  62. Hamster October 4, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    That’s a familiar trip, up I-5 going north. I used to make the long trek to work in Seattle, and coming back home over the rise and down into the sloughs after Everett was always a huge relief. The land turns rural, the ticky-tacky thins out, and sense of being caught in a gulch of fast food signs gives way to the Cascades and the sea. I would come home after work and Mt. Baker and the Twin Sisters would catch the setting sun just as I came over the hills. I could feel my head reset.
    Sorry Jim, I missed your book signing in Bellingham, but I got hung up gardening. Besides, best to leave the crowded basement of Village Books to someone who will actually buy a copy. Most of my reading is from the library.

  63. The Mook October 4, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    Unlike present day requirements (terms of engagement), Jim makes it simple: shoot the fat people and all will be fine.

  64. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    Thank you Networker:
    “Wardoc, just a small reminder re your own now-vanished comment: us wimmin belong to ourselves. And we lock and load too.”

  65. GetAbike October 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    eightm, getAblog. thanks.

  66. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    Wrong. The town next to mine has a mayor posturing about putting up a graven image of the Ten Commandments in the town square.
    The mayor, strutting around flaunting his Christianity, has presided over the most egregious big box explosion swirling around a mall that you have ever seen!
    I had a Christian in my face hassling me about it. (She knows that I’m an atheist).
    I said “Sure. Tell you what. FIRST, let them go by the Ten Commandments. Then they can put the graven image up. Shut the town down on the Sabbath, including the truck stops and the mall. No more advertising. No billboards, it only increases coveting of goods. Shut down the depleted uranium factory. It kills people. (And worse for these Christians, it kills the unborn!). Let’s see these people who blather on about our laws being based on Judaic-Christian law put their money where their mouths are”.
    So no, we won’t be better off with bible-thumpers in charge.

  67. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    I know exactly what you mean. About all of that.

  68. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 2:48 pm #

    But that’s the point of writing, Asoka, to move people in some way. Why would you bother criticising someone’s writing style in their own blog? Just don’t read it if you don’t like the writing.

  69. John66 October 4, 2010 at 2:52 pm #

    Keep an eye on the dollar.
    “The Fall of the Dollar” will be the phrase that historians will refer to this point in time in much the same vein of significance as “The Great Depression,” “The Civil War” and “The American Revolution.”

  70. mattg October 4, 2010 at 2:52 pm #

    To many run on sentances in this one. There are only so many compund adjectives you can fit into a sentance you know. Oh- well apparently you don’t know that.
    Anyway, this weekend I was squandering some gas riding around new developments on my bike (not to much gas though it’s a 250). Normally I’m also inclided to regard all these vinyl and chipboard houses as “an asteroid field of crap”. Then again I considered; democracy has agreed to make housing and equipping it’s citizen’s for happiness the national project. The definition of “happiness” is left up to the individual. Most people seem to lack imagination in that department but overall it’s a better project than invading Poland or building Versailles.
    The country is fat no doubt but one way or another we’re going on a diet. Why freak out if some people are going to have heart attacks?

  71. Hamster October 4, 2010 at 2:55 pm #

    Oh, by the way, the not so cheap gas around here is the North Slope being drained. The Alaska pipeline goes to Alberta, where North Slope light crude is used to cut Alberta tar enough so that it can be transported in a pipe. Then the pipeline heads for the refineries just south of the border, bracketing Bellingham at Cherry Point and Anacortes.
    The Pacific Northwest is essentially a petroleum island. We refine the stuff here and then it gets distributed to Oregon, Washington. Idaho and by boat to Alaska.
    The word from the oil industry is that the North Slope is well into depletion. The oil has already slowed so much in the pipeline that there are engineering concerns about keeping the thing working.
    And then what? Losing the North Slope could also take down transport for Alberta oil, leaving all of Cascadia from BC to Northern California with a new and challenging situation.

  72. jackieblue2u October 4, 2010 at 3:01 pm #

    But we are still stuck with a moralistic, old fashioned, “you have to earn it” mentality when the economic system is telling us, this mode of thought no longer applies, the rules have changed, work is no longer needed, is destined to disappear whether you like it or not.
    Take a look at all of those unemployed in the US, in Ireland, in Spain, etc. There are millions of them and tell them you are all lazy, you all want to play the victims, you don’t want to baby sit, or paint homes, or “invent” a new line of work: as if millions of people can’t figure out and invent all of these new kinds of jobs and work that are waiting to be discovered.
    Thank You for summing them up.
    I am sick and tired of hearing if you really wanted a job you could get one.
    Not true anymore. Oh maybe scrubbing floors, but i am too old for that and have done it enough.
    Everything is different now. We need to help one another, feed your friends. I am very serious.
    So many are ashamed to ‘accept’ anything from anyone. I don’t mean welfare (govt).
    “They” make it shameful to not have a job.
    go to Heald College and earn a degree and a living so you can have a life.
    Anyway, I am so sick and tired of the f’in propaganda.
    The younger people generally buy into it.
    it’s all alot of B.S.
    I have always worked and paid my bills, it is not possible any longer.
    I never lived beyond my means until i married a man who did. blew it big time. but that’s another story, not for here.

  73. Dr.Pangloss October 4, 2010 at 3:23 pm #

    Wow, in 60 minutes Rule of Law, Ozone, Folkwolf and Consultant all attacked the Tea Party. But since it is obvious to me that none of you know the first thing about the people that are in the Tea Party, permit me to give some first hand experience.
    The majority are women. They are more educated and wealthy than average (physicians,engineers, business people, farmers, homemakers,etc). They are responsible people who try to be self-reliant, responsible and good parents. Some are religious and some are not. They are mostly mad at Republicans who in 1994 promised us smaller government and balanced budget, then doubled the size of government and gave us $450 billion deficits. They are upset about being lied to, remember “weapons of mass destruction”?
    They are tired of wars that go on forever (Obama promised that the first thing he would do is bring the troops home and we could “take that to the bank”). They are weary of wars that cost trillions of dollars and having 1000 bases in 130 countries (that we know about).
    The are tired of politicians of both parties that stole all the money that we put into Social Security to buy votes to get elected. They are tired of the lies from Washington and the lack of transparency and accountability (tell us where the TARP money went and why did you bail out AIG, eleven billion to Goldman Sachs and billions to FOREIGN banks.
    Read about Senate bill 510 and what it does to small farmers. Read about the “Financial Regulation” bill. Read about Obamacare, it was written by trial lawyers (and other special interests in secret) with no input from doctors and nurses and no tort reform…ask your local OBGYN what they think?
    They read a lot of books and discuss them. They are very aware of Peak Oil, and for many of us, Mr Kunstler changed our lives and we will be eternally thankful to him. We are trying to grow a lot of our own food (organically), heat our houses with wood we cut, downsize, pay off debt, and get in shape for what could be a tough future. We are trying to learn skills, farming, blacksmith, beer making, etc. that will be useful in a low energy future.
    So the Tea Party is “radicalized yokels…desperately pointing fingers,” etc.etc. Gee, what happened to the racist meme, was that last week (BTW, google Lloyd Marcus, an American who was at 200 Tea Party events and see what he has to say about racism). But it wasn’t the Tea Party that did all the fraud, the mortgages, the assesments, the derivatives. It wasn’t the Tea Party who gave all the money to the bankers who caused the economic collapse (the average Goldman Sachs bonus was what $700,000?). We didn’t steal ALL the money from Social Security. We didn’t take over General Motors, break contract law, screw the bondholders and give the company to Union special interests. We didn’t run Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. We weren’t to blame for the great job in the Gulf of Mexico. BTW, good to know that Gitmo is closed and they stopped using torture.
    One last question to you who are so much smarter, sophisticated, worldly, educated than us poor dumb Tea Partiers…..right now, without googling it, answer this question, in French, “Qui est Pangloss?”

  74. trippticket October 4, 2010 at 3:28 pm #

    Hidey-ho, Clusterfuckers! Back from a grueling road trip with my wife and children, my mother, and my sister and her two, to chilly, breezy Ames, Iowa. Twenty hours each way, with almost no sleep. What a ride! Good visit though for my brother’s wedding.
    Just wanted to say something about Cash’s comment, and the perception in general, regarding saving for a “rainy day.” Where I dwell mentally, a rainy day is payday. It’s a time to rest and contemplate what’s next, but most of all the rain is a legitimate currency in a contracting world. Rain is transitioning from being an engineering waste disposal problem back to its proper place as life-giver.
    Now before you claim that ol’ Tripp is being a bit literal this afternoon, and missing the nuance in a trusty old saying, let me agree with that perception. But abstract axioms arise from real life experiences and attitudes, and this one is a fair representation of a paradigm based in fear, scarcity, and hoarding. The agricultural paradigm.
    On the other hand, the emerging/ancient horticultural paradigm celebrates low-energy perennial systems, rest and rejuvenation, and a more pantheistic sense of abundance and fertility.
    Rainy days are good friends in this world, and I don’t save for them, I celebrate them. Just how I see it.

  75. asoka October 4, 2010 at 3:30 pm #

    Mila59, I am not criticizing the writing. The writing is beautiful. If you have read anything by Tom Robbins, you know I am complimenting JHK with the comparison of metaphor mastery.
    What I am trying to point out is the use (misuse?) of beautiful language to make people fearful.

  76. Cavepainter October 4, 2010 at 3:40 pm #

    Left Seattle in 1969, when there was still a “Fishermans Wharf” with remnants of a fishing fleet moored there; when there were still enough salmon in Elliot Bay to hold annual “Salmon Derby” and the bay would be filled with locals out in their little home-made dories; when “gooey ducks” were still plentiful at low tide and neither the beaches on the Paninsula or the mountain trails were crowded with people. Between 1965 ’til my departure in ’69 I witnessed the accelerating sprawl along the newly laid I-5 corridor, filling the landscape north and south and across both bordering bodies of water with what JHK has been bemoaning on this site. John Steinbeck’s book “Travels with Charlie” came out in 1961; in it he cronicaled the the disater to the area up to that time.
    We’ve learned nothing.

  77. mattg October 4, 2010 at 3:56 pm #

    I have no idea who asoka is but in regards to his critique of the writing style:
    Not that I don’t agree mostly with JHK but. loaded language is a logical fallacy because it presupposes a value statement and influences the thinker from making their own conclusion.
    If you don’t think this is a problem try reading “Soldier of Fortune”. The publication actually has some interesting information but the language makes it sound like it’s written by Sam the Eagle from the Muppets. Obviously that publication is intended for High Authoritarian assholes (loaded). Who does that make CFN aimed at? Colonel Dinkweed (UNSC ret.) would say, “Transgender-sympathizing gray-water-latte drinking hipsters who like to smugly denigrate anyone that doesn’t share their views.” Actually he’s not smart enough to come up with that.

  78. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 4:02 pm #

    The pension promises were already broken, back in the 80s, when corporate raiders bought corporations, raided the assets, including the pension funds, and then sold it off.
    That’s when newly pensionless workers were sold the 401K bullshit. We were told that we could get in on the boom, that Wall Street clearly would only go up, and that we could profit on other people’s misery, as they profited on ours. (Oh, wait, not that last part).
    Now they are going after public pensions, like teachers and public servants. Why should they have pensions, when we don’t? Screw us all equally!! We demand it, in the name of fairness!
    Social Security is next.

  79. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 4:15 pm #

    That’s right, Tripp.
    Everyone should hold onto this thought –
    The economy is a subset of the environment, not the other way around.
    We can live without this particular economic system, but we can’t live without our ecosystem.

  80. SNAFU October 4, 2010 at 4:18 pm #

    Dr. Pangloss contends “But since it is obvious to me that none of you know the first thing about the people that are in the Tea Party, permit me to give some first hand experience. The majority are women. They are more educated and wealthy than average (physicians,engineers, business people, farmers, homemakers,etc).”
    Perhaps Dr. Pangloss can explain the Tea Party backing of Christine O’Donnell, as it appears to me that she has nothing in common with the people you portray as the majority of Tea Party members other than her membership in the roughly half of the human species known as female.

  81. Colorado Greg October 4, 2010 at 4:33 pm #

    Hello Mike, (if you’re still there…)
    You might appreciate this site:
    Here’s a brief quote:
    “…you’ve looked at our situation squarely, and yes, you’ve been shaken to the core by what you’ve learned. You may have become, to the uninitiated, “crazy.” But you aren’t crazy, and neither am I. Everybody that grasps the peak oil story quickly begins to understand the physical ramifications that it will mean to our lives, but few take that look in the bathroom mirror and see that bewildered individual looking back. It’s what this [Peak Oil] issue does to our mental processes.”
    Hang in there.

  82. SeaYoung October 4, 2010 at 4:36 pm #

    Mr. Kunstler,
    The forclosure rate is getting so bad here in Dixie, even the Presbyterians are now considering handling snakes.
    Better prepared than left out, should the opportunity to participate in probate court occur. Thanks for the heads up!

  83. Mike October 4, 2010 at 4:37 pm #

    Thanks very much Colorado Greg. Also, thanks to all who replied with kind words and encouragement. It helps a lot.

  84. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 4:50 pm #

    Okay. And yes, I have read Tom Robbins, back in the day, oh so many years ago! But doesn’t your “writing to make people fearful” imply that the readers aren’t intelligent enough to sort it? Doesn’t this blog pull in people (for the most part) who are already prepared for, or appreciate JHK’s writing style? I came here after reading his books. I just think there is already a self-selected audience here, so that his writing is mostly meant to amuse us and start discussion, rather than to make us fearful.
    I’ve never read Soldier of Fortune, but I find mattg’s comments interesting. Still, “loaded language” is all part of creative writing, yes? People have to be critical readers and figure out those things for themselves, or else learn about them in school, if children are still taught Critical Thinking???

  85. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 4:51 pm #

    You go girl. Your comments are right on the money (hee hee).

  86. george October 4, 2010 at 5:08 pm #

    While we’re at it, let’s not forget about events happening on the international stage that have the potential to make a bad domestic situation even worse. For example, fifteen years after the supposed end of hostilities in the former Yugoslavian Republic of Bosnia, the Serb and Croat minorities are making ominous threats of going their own separate ways and leaving the Muslim majority republic for good. Good work President Clinton, Secretary Albright and all the other pathogenic characters who got us into this mess. American troops are still there keeping a fragile peace fifteen years later and won’t be leaving anytime soon. Ditto for Afghanistan, where the War On Terror is turning into an all-out assault on NATO forces by the Pakistan-backed Taliban. And did I forget Iraq? Things are definitely heating up over there as the insurgents regroup and launch ever-deadlier attacks on civilians. Good going President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld.

  87. neanderlover October 4, 2010 at 5:15 pm #

    I’m from the Seattle area. mr Kunstler, I hope you get the chance to view the vinyl villages scarring our view of Mt Rainier. The sea of ticky-tack houses in the Orting area and other towns is astounding. I dread to think what the heat of a volcano might do to all that vinyl siding.

  88. ctemple October 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm #

    I liked everything about Jim’s article this week except I was confused a little about the use of the word testicular there at the beginning. What was that about, a man’s fear of intrapment in a relationship? Or a meatphor like a space that opens and closes wrong and traps a dude, like maybe a cave?
    I’m not sure.

  89. ctemple October 4, 2010 at 5:19 pm #

    Before Q beats me to it, I meant metaphor, not meatphor

  90. asoka October 4, 2010 at 5:23 pm #

    OK, mila59, maybe I’m off the mark in my comments. You are right that this is a self-selected audience.
    But you said the following:

    But that’s the point of writing, Asoka, to move people in some way.

    I may be wrong, but when writing is so negative and the cumulative effect is so strong, it may lead to a “we are so fucked!” kind of attitude, a cynicism, a jaded kind of fatalism, that does not move people; it paralyzes them. Why do anything if the situation is so bad? Why not just sit back and be a spectator? Why not just laugh while Rome burns?
    And for many, what I call negative is simply “facing reality” … they believe we have reached the tipping point, exceeded carrying capacity, and there is absolutely nothing to be done except buy more guns and gold. At times this blog seems to be pushing me toward that conclusion.
    If JHK’s hip writing contributes to inactivity, to apathy, to hopelessness, then it can be enjoyed as a piece of writing (and I do enjoy JHK’s writing), but I reserve the right to suggest that, at times, it commits hyperbole, and distortion, which is not helpful to finding a solution to our ills.

  91. lbendet October 4, 2010 at 6:01 pm #

    Just a little addendum to my earlier post concerning Iraqi oil. In 2007 I copied an article from Greg Palast which describes the conflict between the Neo-cons and Pentagon against OPEC, Big oil and the state department. It’s too long to copy here, but I thought I’d at least give you a sampling:
    “In fact there were two conflicting plans, setting off a hidden policy war between neo-conservatives at the Pentagon, on one side, versus a combination of “Big Oil” executives and US State Department “pragmatists”._______
    “Secret sell-off plan
    The industry-favoured plan was pushed aside by a secret plan, drafted just before the invasion in 2003, which called for the sell-off of all of Iraq’s oil fields. The new plan was crafted by neo-conservatives intent on using Iraq’s oil to destroy the Opec cartel through massive increases in production above Opec quotas.”___
    “Big Oil” appears to have won. The latest plan, obtained by Newsnight from the US State Department was, we learned, drafted with the help of American oil industry consultants.______
    Newsnight is broadcast every weekday at 10.30pm on BBC Two in the UK.
    It has been a very good war for Big Oil — courtesy of OPEC price hikes. The five oil giants saw profits rise from $34 billion in 2002 to $81 billion in 2004, year two of Iraq’s “transition to democracy.”___
    I can’t resist adding this paragraph in:)
    “More important, the industry has its own reserves whose value is attached, like a suckerfish, to OPEC’s price targets. Here’s a statistic you won’t see on Army recruitment posters: The rise in the price of oil after the first three years of the war boosted the value of the reserves of ExxonMobil Oil alone by just over $666 billion. (The devil is in the details.)”

  92. turkle October 4, 2010 at 6:15 pm #

    The national Tea Parties have been hijacked by the billionaire Koch brothers who want less government regulation and lower taxes for their corporations. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
    Fox News Network (news…hahahaha) heavily promotes even the smallest of Tea Parties and has 5 Republican presidential hopefuls working for them. The bias is pretty clear.
    You say Tea Partiers are mad at Republicans. That’s a new one on me. I thought Tea Partiers were Republicans with another name.
    Which is funny because Republicans have caused most of the major problems and scandals in this country since the early 80’s, starting with Reagan’s trillion dollar deficits and continuing into Bush II’s moronic tax cuts for the wealthy, the wide spread deregulation of industry, financial crimes and malfeasance, etc. Shall we bust open a history book? The Democrats have….what? Fannie Mae? The Republicans have Iran-Contra, the S&L Scandal, Enron, the Iraq War, the Afghanistan War, and on and on, and you fucking morons want to put the bastard children of these crooks back in charge? Amazing, really, how fucking stupid people can be and how much they forget.
    And I’m sure a few Tea Partiers are not idiots, but all I hear are idiotic ideas. Many talk about cutting government between 15 and 30%. Well, since roughly 50% of the GDP is from government expenditure and about the same percentage of Americans are employed by the government, it doesn’t take a genius to see what that would accomplish. We could turn our recession into a full blown depression with 30% unemployment. Republicans sure are good at fucking things up.
    The same person who wants to “cut the government” will then tell you how they signed up for early SS payments.
    That’s the problem. No awareness, much less self-awareness. No real grasp of who caused all these problems. And no compassion for others. And a partisan chip on the shoulder, to boot.
    I mean, the best shape financially we have been in for decades (by far) was under a moderate Democrat, not a supposedly “conservative” Republican. Clinton realized that the tax base has to match expenditures, either through cutting expenditures, raising taxes, or both. Simple, really, but not actually something many Republicans seem to have a clue about. You can only hand out tax breaks if the finances justify it, and they don’t. Eh, but who cares, let’s have a Grover Norquist jamboree.
    But, no, I forgot….it is all Obama’s fault. He is an idiot. He is a commie. He’s a Muslim. He doesn’t have a clue (Tea Partiers claim to have all the clue). He is ruining America. Where’s his birth certificate?

  93. turkle October 4, 2010 at 6:26 pm #

    Good interview with Obama.
    I think he’s just too good for the American electorate, most of whom have been sucking on the cable news crack pipe so long that they can’t see straight.

  94. 2_Happy_Town October 4, 2010 at 6:30 pm #

    Good to go right up to self-swindling and no other nations will want to deal with us. Sorry, but I refuse to join by default with the self-swindling bunch. I for one have some morals and ethics and know others as well. And as for other nations not trusting us who might you suggest is worthy of ours? France? Kuwait? Abu Dahbi? Israel? Mexico? Venezuela? Cuba? Russia? Italy? Libya, Egypt, Cambodia, Pakistan, Turkey, Spain, England, China….ROFL. Livin on the left and right coasts must cause bowel optics (you know…when everything looks shitty) Other than that, brother, I think you’re spot on…come to the heartland where we still grow stuff and work with both our hands and minds. Not ready for the end yet, but we’re gettin a little closer everyday.

  95. turkle October 4, 2010 at 6:41 pm #

    Well, I hope someone is worried about China trusting us, because they have trillions of dollars in T-bills. If they stop trusting us, we’re fucked.

  96. Vengeur October 4, 2010 at 6:46 pm #

    You really must let us in on the secret of driving in cars,flying in jets, going to supermarkets, yet still managing to remain aloof from the rest of us . It must be wonderful to engage in sheeple behaviour, yet to have such a wonderfully pristine conscience.

  97. turkle October 4, 2010 at 6:49 pm #

    “yet to have such a wonderfully pristine conscience”
    That’s assuming a lot.

  98. RickInTacoma October 4, 2010 at 7:25 pm #

    Having seen what our land use policies did to California, I was hoping (naively I’m afraid) that they wouldn’t repeat the same mistakes here in Washington State. After more than a quarter century of environmental activism here I can tell you that battling developers and the highway lobby proved exhausting, career-limiting, and ultimately futile. Every acre of forest destruction was heartbreaking. Every new chain store and cookie cutter subdivision another metastasis of what people claimed they moved here to escape. I quoted from JHK’s “Geography of Nowhere” at public meetings back in the early 90’s thinking I was getting through to at least one public official. At best I realized I wasn’t the only one who thought something wrong with this picture. But eyes only glazed over out there otherwise. Then as now denial reigned supreme.
    You should see what they’re doing here in Pierce County with SR-16, a towering, obscene mass of concrete spaghetti, a megaproject to go with a SECOND parallel suspension bridge across the Tacoma Narrows, all under the aegis of “safety”. They can’t build this stuff fast enough and are always screaming for more. Every lane fills up with cars overnight. The construction barricades simply move another mile further, never to disappear. Most of it deteriorates faster than they can fix it. I-5 and 16 are permanent construction zones surrounded by and servicing Nowhere.
    We’ve known about peak oil for more than 40 years now. When we figure out a new source of debt to tap and resume the madness of five years ago, oil will surely go back over $140 and beyond. And the finger-pointing will resume. SR-16 and its twin suspension bridges will eventually become a world-class bike path.
    When it comes to quality of life issues America is a paradox. Most people can feel it but few can or will say it out loud as JHK can. I can only hope someone out there is getting it but about all I’m thinking any more is that at age 58 I’m glad I hopefully won’t be on this Vale of Tears long enough to see things really crash and burn. Then maybe it already has, we just can’t yet see or admit it.

  99. Cavepainter October 4, 2010 at 7:26 pm #

    “It seems we’re developing a whole new and interesting relationship with the rule of law in this country. Increasingly, it’s become optional.”
    Certainly that seems to be the case for foreign nationals regarding our immigration laws. Going it further, once here they demand to be legitimized as a political force; denouncing the label “illlegal alien” they demand reconition and representation to compell changes in existing laws with retroactive effect of dismissing their illegality.
    Of course, the so called “progressive left” argues for amnesty on basis that “their numbers are too great”. Uh,…..isn’t the correct word surrender?
    The other argument is that deportation would be unfair, especially to their children. Pivot that argument 180 degrees: Advantage gained by experience and benefits of living in our first world nation gives them immeasurable advantage back in their nation of origin over those who didn’t come here in violation of our laws.

  100. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 8:01 pm #

    Actually, you’re probably right. In that JHK’s writing is amusing, but it does sort of lead to that “everything’s hopeless” attitude. I’m definitely GUILTY of that feeling myself. Once Lovelock, the Gaia hypothesis guy, gave it all up, I sort of threw my own hands up in despair. So JHK feeds that. But I keep on keeping on, nonetheless.

  101. mila59 October 4, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Awesome, dude.

  102. CaptSpaulding October 4, 2010 at 8:28 pm #

    To me, facing reality means recognizing what’s happening whether you like it or not. People on the Titanic didn’t believe it could sink either, but that didn’t stop it from going down. Nobody has a lock on predictions, but there are people who can see what’s going on without bullshitting themselves. I’ve met people who will argue that climate change isn’t happening. Myself, I’ll go with the majority of the scientists. I tell those people that it doesn’t matter whether they believe in it or not, they will get to live through it. Often reality is not pleasant, but the only way you have a chance to change it is to recognize the problems as they exist. If you’re an optimist or a pessimist, as long as you’re standing on the deck of the Titanic, reality is gonna happen and it doesn’t give a shit what you think.

  103. turkle October 4, 2010 at 8:34 pm #

    People move about regardless of borders placed on maps. It has happened forever and will continue. Isn’t it time we accept this fact of life and loosen rather than tighten border controls so that people can go where they want to work and live? It seems to work fine for modern Europe.
    Furthermore, we’ve loosened the controls on nearly every other good and service in the world, in finance, in the corporate sector, etc. so that entities in these areas have an incredible amount of freedom to do business where they desire. Why not the same basic freedoms for people? Or do they not rate as highly in your mind as a multi-national corporation?
    What I find so funny and ironic is your appeal to the “rule of law”, when the SW US, Mexico, Central America, South America, et al. were seized by force from the original inhabitants by the Spanish using all kinds of trickery and savagery, completely outside the bounds of law. These areas were then transformed into subservient colonies, which has stifled their economic development and affected the way their societies and governments developed. Millions of people were killed by disease and war brought by the colonialists. I guess you’re the type of asshole that would call these places “third world”. But now that we’ve made them that way, they should follow our rule of law, which we saw fit to ignore when attacking them in the first place.
    I guess you could summarize your point of view as (correct me if I’m wrong), “We took this fair and square.” Hence you have no moral high ground. I don’t give a fuck about whether you think you live in a “first world” country (a stupid racist term if there ever was one). This whole place (the Americas) was seized by force from the original inhabitants and rather recently in history. Who the fuck are you to say who can and can’t come here, especially since these migrants aren’t doing you any bodily harm and are mostly coming here to find jobs? These are not rampaging barbarian hordes. They are here to pick the lettuce and make you a burrito.
    And now you want to say that a peaceful migration of the inhabitants of Mexico (don’t worry…I read between the lines of your post to figure out who the “foreign nations” are), mostly in order to find work, is akin to an invasion. No, I’m sorry, Mr. Tea Bagger. I don’t buy it. It is called a migration, and it has been almost entirely peaceful, regardless of a few hyped-up incidents of violence. An invasion is what our ancestors did in order for you and I to sit smugly behind our keyboards sipping coffee while some poor Mexican crosses the desert in order to make enough money for his family to survive. Just be grateful. But for the grace of God, it could have been you or I.
    Oh, yeah, then there’s the fact that 90% of the guns used in Mexico’s drug war come from here, and most of the drugs from there end up here. We’ve spent far more time, energy, and money on Afghanistan or Iraq than on our far more important neighbor to the south. And then we wonder why the border seems to be a big clusterfuck. Well, gee whiz, I wonder. Maybe we should start paying attention instead of playing GI Joe half way across the world.

  104. turkle October 4, 2010 at 8:42 pm #

    With all the potential Republican candidates working for Fox News, aside from the black sheep Romney, you could say that the GOP has become a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation.

  105. trippticket October 4, 2010 at 8:47 pm #

    “The economy is a subset of the environment, not the other way around.”
    Exactamundo. And I think it’s ironic (and hilarious actually) that the free market is in the process of stamping out capitalism.
    Put that one in your pipe and smoke it.

  106. jim e October 4, 2010 at 8:48 pm #

    Alan Greenspan blew his last clarinet lick at the Five Spot – Guy Noir?

  107. badnewswade October 4, 2010 at 9:02 pm #

    I don’t know about foreclosure cancellations leading to the breakdown of law and order. If anything that’s a sign of law and order winning, a victory for the social contract where the alternative is for 10% of the population to become homeless and vast tracts of suburbia rotting away to nothing.
    As for someone with a badge looking at what’s in the vaults – are you kidding? Apparently half the gold in the world only exists on paper and Fort Knox hasn’t had an audit in decades. The Badge himself is as guilty as anyone else…
    On the other hand, yes, without real economic growth things are going to fall apart even more. Which is why we in the UK just opened the worlds biggest off-shore wind farm and hope to end up with about 20 large power stations worth of the stuff…

  108. badnewswade October 4, 2010 at 9:04 pm #

    PS Keep doing what you’re doing – I love your work! Just wanted to offset the gloom a bit.

  109. jerry October 4, 2010 at 9:05 pm #

    The way I see it–this foreclosure stop sign is only a yield sign. The banks are rebuilding their investigative engine and dragster so they can beat the mortgage holder’s jalopy on the short strip.
    Bank of America is doing their homework over these coming 60 days to make sure they will be holding the paperwork that had been eaten by someone’s dog when it was supposed to be presented in the court room.
    BoA and the others will eventually own the foreclosed home, and the homeowner will be out looking for a rental. Then the bankstas will resell the place, or try to, for a rock bottom price. The Bankstas will rejoice if it gets remortgaged because they will have made back their losses.

  110. jim e October 4, 2010 at 9:23 pm #

    October 3, 2009
    Fitzgerald Theater
    Saint Paul, MN
    TR: A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets, but on the twelfth floor of the Acme Building, one man is still trying to find the answers to life’s persistent questions — Guy Noir, Private Eye —
    GK: It was October in St. Paul, and the weather had taken a sharp turn toward winter. One day people were sitting in their backyards enjoying supper and the next day they were sitting outdoors in their coats eating lunch and the next day they were nailing plastic over their doors and windows. And me, I was trying to get my radiators to give up some heat. (BANGING) Lou the landlord likes to keep the temperature down so as to maintain the tenants in a semi-dormant state. The last time they were hot was when the building was on fire. Meanwhile my cousin Sunny was trying to get me to invest in a new product.
    SS: I got decals you can put on your bike that look like bad rust stains so nobody will steal your bike.
    GK: I don’t have the dough, Sunny.
    SS: Very realistic. Look. Huh? Looks like rust. Nobody wants to steal a rusted bike?

  111. networker October 4, 2010 at 9:36 pm #

    mila59, you are welcome, always here to agitate. You seem a decent sort. I wish I were so cool and collected. Nevermind whatever Asoka says, btw. 🙂
    Folks, I would like to call attention to mila59, who just summed up all of Asoka’s past and future b.s. in a most profound way:
    “But that’s the point of writing, Asoka, to move people in some way. Why would you bother criticising someone’s writing style in their own blog? Just don’t read it if you don’t like the writing.”
    And then he/she went on to essentially skewer him in subsequent comments, illustrated by this astounding response from Asoka:
    “OK, mila59, maybe I’m off the mark in my comments.”
    Hallelujah! And, funny how additions like CaptSpaulding’s keep popping up in response to him. Hear, hear, CaptSpaulding. I for one believe it is important to see things for the way they are, rather than as we wish them to be.
    jackieblue2u said,
    “I am sick and tired of hearing if you really wanted a job you could get one. Not true anymore. Oh maybe scrubbing floors, but i am too old for that and have done it enough.”
    The problem I see with this “propaganda” statement is this: many, many people have been scrubbing floors to survive, have been doing it for a long time, and have never stopped. I have “done it enough” myself. But suddenly there is this new class of unemployed in America, laid off/fired and cannot get a job in their “field,” but unwilling to look further and complaining loudly about it. The way I see it, nobody cared a good goddamn when it was brown single mothers who suffered. “They” were making it shameful to be unemployed for a long time before 2008. But allofasudden now it’s white people, specifically it seems, white men, who are suffering through their readjusted mortgages, getting unemployment extension after unemployment extension, and everybody feels sorry for them. The whole country is talking about it! Too bad nobody cared about the existing poor people to begin with. So, white guys, how does it feel to be poor, brown, and female? Not so “shameful” afterall I guess, heh.
    Dr.Pangloss, if only it were true and accurate, your depiction of Tea Partiers. Perhaps you find yourself a member of a particular “club” and imagine that its way is the Tea Partier way. Ever heard of the name “Koch”?
    Now, back to canning apples after pitch-forking manure onto the garden beds all day.

  112. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 9:49 pm #

    Don’t you have that backwards, George?
    The US did its best to break up Yugoslavia in the 90s, including supporting the nasty Muslim drug dealers in Albania. The Arab muhajadeen went to Bosnia after Afghanistan, to further help attack communists for their US sponsors. That includes the boogeyman of the oughts- our beloved by the National Security State, BinLaden-
    “From the ‘The Washington Times’ June 22, 2001
    “The rebels would have their big brothers in America – the same heroes who led the NATO mission against their enemies, the Serbs – believe that the violence they are now perpetrating in Macedonia is merely about protecting minority rights. But the National Liberation Army (NLA), a splinter of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), also has another motive: It is fighting to keep control over the region’s drug trafficking, which has grown into a large, lucrative enterprise since the Kosovo war. In addition to drug money, the NLA also has another prominent venture capitalist: Osama bin Laden. The Muslim terrorist leader, according to a document obtained by The Washington Times and written by the chief commander of the Macedonian Security Forces, puts out the front money for the rebel group through a representative in Macedonia: ‘This person is representative of Osama Ben laden sic , who is the main financial supporter of the National Liberation Army, where up to date he has paid $6 million to $7 million for the needs of the National Liberation Army.'”
    From ‘The Canberra Times’ (Australia ) April 28, 2000 – Page 8
    “BELGRADE: Islamic Saudi millionaire Osama bin Laden, wanted for terrorism by the United States, is in Kosovo. The official Yugoslav news agency Tanjug said bin Laden, whom it described as a ” terrorist and Islamic fanatic” , arrived from Albania after having formed a group of 500 Islamic fighters in the eastern region around Korce and Pogradec to carry out ” terrorist acts” in Kosovo.
    “He planned similar acts in the southern region of Serbia bordering on Kosovo, including Presevo, Medvedja and Bujanovac, the agency said.”
    Encouraged by the US, Kosovo muslims declared their succession from Serbia two years ago. Remember that that was used by Russia when Georgia attacked South Ossetia?
    Are you paying attention?
    So now Serbia has given up, and is abandoning their beleaguered countrymen and women in Kosovo. You’ve got it backwards!

  113. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 9:50 pm #

    Oh, and the KLA is part of the drug running that the US runs out of Afghanistan into Europe.

  114. asoka October 4, 2010 at 10:00 pm #

    networker said: “I for one believe it is important to see things for the way they are, rather than as we wish them to be.”
    There are two problems with this statement by networker (and Capt. Spaulding).
    1) There is a multitude of perspectives on what “reality” is. To a slaveholder things were just fine with him in charge (“to see things for the way they are”) and slaves working the plantation. To the slaves reality might not have seemed so fine. They saw things as they “wished them to be.”
    2) “Seeing things for the way they are, rather than as we wish them to be” means accepting the status quo. Change doesn’t happen unless you can imagine how things could be.
    Once you allow yourself to visualize a different reality it can happen, as it did in the American Revolution, in the Civil War, in World War II.
    Throughout history people didn’t just content themselves with “seeing things for the way they are” … they imagined an alternative future and made it happen … as they “wished them to be.”

  115. wagelaborer October 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm #

    I agree with you.
    There was a guy here a couple of weeks ago going all “Leave Britney Alone” about electricity production.
    His point was that it was really, really hard to keep America’s vast use of electricity supplied.
    Yep, it is.
    And it can’t be sustained. Even if we really, really like electricity and want to keep it the way it is.
    Stomping our feet and throwing a national temper tantrum won’t stop reality from picking us up and slapping us in the face.
    But that seems to be the preferred approach of most Americans.

  116. asoka October 4, 2010 at 10:19 pm #

    wage said: “Stomping our feet and throwing a national temper tantrum won’t stop reality from picking us up and slapping us in the face.”
    I feel like I have been slapped in the face by the banking industry. They are making record profits: that is reality.
    Guess I just have to accept that the banks rule everything… that’s just the way it is. We lose our houses, they get richer…
    Why imagine it could be any other way?
    Stomping our feet won’t help.
    I have to work on seeing things for the way they are, rather than as we wish them to be.
    What you (and networker and Capt. Spaulding) are saying is a recipe for apathy. It is fatalistic. We are victims. Victims of war. Victims of electricity shortages. Victims of complex digital networks. Victims … and nothing we can do about it.
    I suppose that attitude has the advantage of achieving a measure of detachment.
    Problem is always caused by “others” and we have no responsibility to act … since that’s the way things are.
    Or, as my church taught me: “the rich get richer, the poor get poorer; it has always been that way and the poor will always be with us.”
    In other words, shut up and stop asking such stupid questions, you naive idealist. You are out of touch with “reality”

  117. networker October 4, 2010 at 10:51 pm #

    Asoka, it is anything but fatalism, or apathy. In fact it is the opposite. Instead of your magical visualizations and wishful thinking (for which you give repeated evidence)- I propose we entertain wishes based on reality. What you seem unable to grasp, is that one cannot fix things if you cannot see them for what they are.

  118. asoka October 4, 2010 at 11:15 pm #

    networker said: “I propose we entertain wishes based on reality.”
    All wishes are based on reality. Reality is the undeniable starting point where we find ourselves.
    You never said anything positive about wishes.
    What you said was: “I for one believe it is important to see things for the way they are, rather than as we wish them to be.”
    What are your wishes for the way things should be? Or do you, as you stated, just settle for “seeing things for the way they are”?
    And who gets to say “the way things are”? The slaveholder or the slaves? The Israelis or the Palestinians?
    Take the example in the news now of the CIA drone bomb attacks in Pakistan. From the USA point of view “the way things are” is just fine. For others, like the commander-in-chief of the Pakistan army soldiers who were just “accidentally” killed by drone bombs, things being “the way they are” is not acceptable.
    Seeing things for what they are does not mean anything gets “fixed”… unless you wish things to be different.
    Your snide mis-characterization of “magical visualizations” and “wishful thinking” aside, one must be able to visualize an alternative before it can happen. It is not enough to simply see what is.

  119. Cavepainter October 4, 2010 at 11:48 pm #

    OK, let me see if I understand you. Passed national policy (for having been errant)deligitimizes sovereignty entitlement for the United States, right? Along with loss of sovereignty goes order of representational government by democratic process for the “citizenry”, right?
    I remain puzzled, so I guess I’ll just have to accept whatever dismissive labels you choose for tagging me. I don’t personally know anyone who can’t reciite the same litany of errant past national policy that you have, yet I also don’t know anyone who believes simplistically, like you seem to, that some super natural spirit will be invoked if the U.S. gives up its ghost in sacrificdial gesture of penance. Considering how dauntingly over scaled are the problems of global population wouldn’t such theatrical over-reach be equivalent to throwing virgins into a volcano?

  120. networker October 5, 2010 at 12:10 am #

    Asoka said,
    “What are your wishes for the way things should be?”
    Well knock me over with a feather, but Asoka actually ASKED someone what they thought! Not before he expounded at length upon his asinine, unfounded assumptions of course, but hey, at least he finally freaking ASKED.
    Asoka, I believe many things, and I would not be growing a garden and raising animals and changing the way I work if I did not believe that things could get better. You love to try and pigeonhole people, but unfortunately for you, us real people out here are more complicated than that. I never said that one couldn’t visualize an alternative by the way. I said that if you are going to visualize an alternative, it is better to base your wishes upon accurate knowledge of the problem. I also have never said, nor given indication, that I think we are victims of anything, and whether a person is enjoying a given reality has nothing to do with whether or not it is real. I am not detached, in fact I am deeply involved in building self-reliant community where I live. I believe we all have a profound responsibility to the other people and animals that surround us, as well as to the eco-sphere that sustains us. I am anything but fatalistic or apathetic, no matter how much you want to believe that. However, none of this runs counter to my belief that it is important to see things clearly as they are, and to stop pretending that news articles equal knowledge. I also never said that seeing things clearly means they automatically get fixed either, so please stop setting up these straw man arguments – they only make you look more out of touch.
    I tell you what, next time you bring your sick dog to the vet, would you prefer the doctor tell you that he really really wants the dog to get better and so he is going to visualize it? Or would you prefer that he take a look for himself, see what is actually wrong with the animal, and then act upon it? You persist in throwing in all sorts of irrelevant arguments and pretending that people think or say things that they didn’t at all.
    All wishes are not based on reality Asoka – as you demonstrate repeatedly here in these comments. Your wishes are based on what you wish were true, rather than what is true. In you Asoka, I see someone who is easily led; who believes what he reads and what he is told. You do not think for yourself.

  121. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 12:14 am #

    I always wonder why a proactive, insightful, and reality-engaged conversation of this calibre always devolves into the jousting above.
    But on Monday?
    Why don’t we spend more time talking about how people are increasing their practical knowledge, and taking whatever remaining money they have – money that’s losing its value fairly rapidly anyway – to build life-support systems?
    We here at CFN generally reject the idea that we are mere “consumer units,” but we also understand that we are not so special that the universe will invent a new kind of physics to bail us out of our mess. We’re just animals that have overshot the carrying capacity of our habitat. And now it’s time to figure out how to survive, and potentially even thrive.
    Starting with canned apples. Or pears perhaps. Because that’s what time of the year it is. It’s not magic stock market levitation time, or net job creation time. Nor is it a good time to be paving highways from Georgia to Missouri. It’s time to put up apples and pears.

  122. networker October 5, 2010 at 12:25 am #

    trippticket, don’t worry, be happy? Is that what you mean?
    I no longer care what day it is, so why not joust? This is what comments sections are for – to address those people who profoundly misunderstand what it is we are doing.

  123. phortytwo October 5, 2010 at 12:30 am #

    Mike, I share your sentiments, as do quite a few others on this forum, it would seem. In a slightly-alternate universe, the project I’m currently undertaking–an urban planning internship in Indonesia–would have some, if not a whole great deal, of relevance and meaning. But given that the folks here, and in the developing world in general, are just on the early rise of the consumption curve and their love-affair with suburbs and Happy Motoring, it instead just reinforces what seems to be the inherent futility of it all.
    Personally, I’m contemplating options. Option 1: throwing in the towel and going home to San Francisco. There at least the water and food are not tainted with un-Godly levels of mercury and other industrial pollutants as they are here. And if I’m going to be engaged in an exercise of futility, it would be nice to at least be surrounded by family and friends–including some in the latter group who also “get it”–rather than here where there is none of either. And preparations can be made for some sort of exit/survival strategy.
    Option 2: stick it out here in hopes that some sort of techno-cratic/logical management of our planet’s problems saves the day, and that this internship leads to other opportunities for a career that will at least allow me to think that I’m making some sort of difference, despite the overwhelming sense of futility.
    And JHK, great post today. Thank you. I’ve become so inured to this three-ring circus shitshow that our political and economic affairs have devolved into, that I failed to take a moment and contemplate the implications of this new development.
    As for wishing for collapse, I try not to do so, though it is a commonplace for many of us whose eyes are open. Wishing for collapse is inviting untold suffering of countless millions of people, ourselves included, but it’s also a recognition of the fact that a reorder of society is required on most every level. But rest assured, we’re getting collapse. It just seems to be taking place in a more slow-motion version than what is often predicted by Jim. Against the backdrop of that kind of prolonged torture, perhaps it is reasonable to just wish for a quick unwinding. But it does give the awake ones amongst us time to get our houses in order.
    Thanks for putting up with my ramble. Needed to vent, too.

  124. asoka October 5, 2010 at 12:40 am #

    networker said: “You persist in throwing in all sorts of irrelevant arguments and pretending that people think or say things that they didn’t at all.”
    Respectfully, networker, what I did was quote back your exact words.
    I guess in your view of reality I am “throwing in all sorts of irrelevant arguments” but in my view I am quoting you verbatim. Maybe you didn’t think through the implications of what you were saying, so you label what I say “irrelevant”
    In your view I am “pretending that people think or say things that they didn’t at all.” In my view I am quoting you verbatim and extending to logical conclusions.
    For example, you say: “I am not detached, in fact I am deeply involved in building self-reliant community where I live.”
    This is delusional! This is a disconnect with the reality of our interdependence. No “community” is going to be “self-reliant”
    For example, Tripp says he is going to can apples and pears. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that Tripp is awesome, but I’ll bet he is not mining the ore and blowing the glass to make the lids and the canning jars. “Self-reliance” is a myth.

  125. networker October 5, 2010 at 1:02 am #

    Asoka, again you proved my point about setting up straw man arguments and claiming people said things they didn’t – “self reliance” does not mean “100% without dependency,” nor did I say so. I also certainly never said an individual could live without dependency. A community on the other hand, can be very self reliant. I even know someone who preserves food using pots made in a kiln by her neighbor. But I never said things were finished or perfect – only one thing: that it is important to see and identify what the real problems are. These things take time Asoka, and you seem to demand perfection before you will even consider another person’s point of view, no matter how valid or pertinent.
    So you quoted me verbatim? Ok, show me exactly where I said said that by looking at reality one couldn’t visualize an alternative and that we are all victims, that things automatically get fixed, and that I “just settle” and am detached. Those are things you falsely ascribed to me, so let’s see some direct quotes.
    Ok as usual you wore me out with your idiocy, I am tired and sore from days of shoveling, so I am packing it in.
    Oh, and btw it’s Tuesday where I am, trippticket 🙂

  126. rippedthunder October 5, 2010 at 1:14 am #

    I am an infrequent poster, so I believe the long emergency is coming , or maybe already started. Myself and my buddy make our own wine from his rather extensive grape vines planted by his Italian grandfather on over 20 acres in western MA back in the twenties. I am 50 yrs old. My grandad taught me the wine wine making process and showed me the good ‘shrooms to pick back in the 60’s. I have a large press and several oak casks. Now after the heavy rain in the North East the mushrooms are poppin’ We grow and can lots of food every year. I just finished “Witch of Hebron” Excellent read. I can survive post oil if the scum will let me. My question is,”CAN I ?” “DO I WAN’T TO?, I am armed and dangerous, HAHA i am so confused. have you read “One Second after” or Patriots. Just sayin.

  127. asoka October 5, 2010 at 1:42 am #

    Real gross domestic product — the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States — increased at an annual rate of 1.7 percent in the second quarter of 2010. SOURCE: Bureau of Economic Analysis.
    In the first quarter, real GDP increased 3.7 percent.
    When Bush was in office, the fruit of eight Bush years … in 2008 … was the GDP in NEGATIVE territory, i.e., less than zero.
    Here is a graph which clearly shows the results of Republican Libertarian Tea Party economic policies of deregulation, decreased spending, and tax cuts:
    I give thanks to Obama, thanks to the economic stimulus, thanks to TARP that saved the banks, thanks to the Democrats, thanks to BIG GOVERNMENT.

  128. LewisLucanBooks October 5, 2010 at 1:46 am #

    “One Second After.” One scene really sticks with me. The attractive power business woman, public relations shill for a tobacco company being turned away from the town because she has NO useful skills in the new world.

  129. rippedthunder October 5, 2010 at 2:10 am #

    there are THOUSANDS of no skill workers which will be NOT NEEDED during a food crisis. Anyone can pick turnips! I am small food grower. she can pick turnips all day .Pardon my flemish but she can work all day to eat my turnips!!! send her ’round I’ll find ‘sumthin for ‘er ta do! I may be crude but this will be the way of th future. I have small children. I will raise them like Michael Langdon and the Engellson ” Little House on the Praire” if I have a choice I think the hungry hoards will get us first unfortunataly!

  130. Kiwi Nick October 5, 2010 at 2:53 am #

  131. Kiwi Nick October 5, 2010 at 2:55 am #

    there are THOUSANDS of no skill workers … currently working for Delta Airlines.
    Boom boom!

  132. phortytwo October 5, 2010 at 2:58 am #

    I think the answer to that question is: quite possibly not. Unfortunately, bullets will run out. So that is only a good insurance policy for a finite period of time. Though I’d imagine that as long as your locale is outside of the possible walking distance of the hoards–which, given the level of physical fitness of most Americans, is not very far–you’ll be fine!
    Being able to produce your own wine, beer, pot, booze, and tobacco is also probably also a way to ensure your survival. Even if the unwashed masses do arrive, no one will want to kill the guy or gal with those precious skills.

  133. Kiwi Nick October 5, 2010 at 3:21 am #

    First up, something a bit funky happened at 2:53am, and I got myself an empty comment. If JHK would remove it, that’ll be nice.
    Though I’d imagine that as long as your locale is outside of the possible walking distance of the hoards
    Umm, I don’t know about the crime patterns in the U.S. but in Australia there’s a really deep problem with rural crime, and therefore it’s not possible to avoid the problem.
    A radio station in Bourke (rural NSW) was attacked during a discussion of rural crime.
    Another thing to throw into the mix is copper theft: many farmers have had their power interrupted when thieves have made off with the wires. Occasionally it happens with phone cables as well, but most of the good phone stuff is buried underground, and phone cable theft from depots is more common. Closer to the city, copper thieves are brazen: they even make off with train cables (15kV DC!!!).
    If governments are half serious, they should put a stop to this nonsense …
    * a mild increase in police resources,
    * much higher sentencing by courts,
    * and repeal of various petty crimes such as jaywalking and ethernet cable running (to save police resources).
    That way, people making an honest buck, or growing honest food won’t be held ransom.

  134. Ang October 5, 2010 at 3:26 am #

    I love how almost every week Jim is happy motoring somewhere or another, then goes on to rant about the evils of happy motoring.
    Maybe Jim’s writing is humorous after all…

  135. tucsonspur October 5, 2010 at 4:15 am #

    Some Southwestern Spin
    Tony Hillerman said that coyote waits and that the dark wind blows. It may appear to be an oversimplification, but I believe that this is the essence of Jim’s enjoyable writing, at least on this blog. Coyote always waits and the dark wind will always blow.
    Although for different reasons, our oil will soon be gone, just as the buffalo are now gone from the Great Plains, and our way of life perhaps transformed into something worse than that on Pine Ridge.
    Red Cloud, Geronimo, Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse all say to me, “…and therefore never send to know for whom coyote howls, he howls for thee.”
    They remind me that their “emergency” was both all too long and all too short.

  136. Kiwi Nick October 5, 2010 at 4:26 am #

    Last week’s “Disservice Industry” post was interesting (if a little laboured), but I’d like to draw attention to two other “Disservice Industries” – banking and telecommunications.
    What makes these more tragic is that (unlike airlines) both of these will be very important components of the post-oil economy. I want to focus on telecommunications.
    The short answer is they’re getting the world on a plate, but they couldn’t give a stuff.
    From an industry insider’s point of view, they have stopped innovating, and almost all IT work for telco industry has ground to a halt (whatever work is left is implemented by morons).
    We’ve just had an Inquiry into customer service issues in the Australian Telecommunications industry, and the poor buggers in ACMA got deluged with about 125 submissions (about 2/3 from consumers).
    Just to be clear, this nonsense (in the US) does NOT happen in Australia – yet.
    – Charges for incoming calls (instead: caller pays per minute to call a cell)
    – Charges for incoming text (none)
    – restrictions on caller ID as in PA
    – area codes like +1-809 that are actually an expensive international call (all international calls have a distinctive prefix)
    But there’s plenty of nonsense that happens …
    + Many suburban people can’t get broadband – imagine living 5 miles from Grand Central Station (NY) and being told no broadband?
    + toll-free 1800 calls (and the international equivalent +800) chargeable from mobile phones, some VoIP, some payphones, etc? My own home telephone charges me 45c/min to call +800.
    + Long wait times to phone customer service when things go wrong
    + Lots of other problems with customer service (lost orders, etc)
    + Buggy websites (log into account, but has missing details, loses orders, loses money/payments, etc)
    + Buggy CSO tools.
    The internet has allowed me to learn many of your thoughts, has allowed me to take whatever precautions against an imploding U.S. economy, and has allowed some of you to learn about Australia/New Zealand (from me). I think the world will be a much worse place if us “on-the-ground” cannot connect.
    I suppose the “cottage industries” of locally grown food, local social networks, etc will be a big part of Post-Oil, but the telecommunications industry can also help the world recover from high fuel prices. If that industry lies down now, we’re screwed.

  137. eightm October 5, 2010 at 6:11 am #

    “But I really question the broad assertion that most office workers do not serve a purpose. In the financial service industry, those who administer my credit card transactions certainly serve a purpose. Those who administer my auto insurance, those who administer my IRA account, certainly they serve a purpose.
    And what about all the office workers that do the paperwork for manufacturing industries? Certainly at least a large share of them serve a purpose.”
    1) credit card transactions : a computer does that, and if it doesn’t you can be sure that it will do it all in the near future, otherwise all the IT guys are really idiots if they can’t still figure it out;
    2) Those who administer my auto insurance : a computer does that, and if it doesn’t you can be sure that it will do it all in the near future, otherwise all the IT guys are really idiots if they can’t still figure it out;
    3) those who administer my IRA account: a computer does that, and if it doesn’t you can be sure that it will do it all in the near future, otherwise all the IT guys are really idiots if they can’t still figure it out;
    The bottom line is that computers were designed and used to AUTOMATE WORK, to eliminate labor, to do more with less, otherwise why on earth even use them ? There is this absurd paradox, that people can’t accept the idea that computers and technology should kill jobs, should eliminate as many jobs as possible, that their reason to be is exactly to get rid of people in all productive endeavors. This is a sign of success, of being used well, of the engineers and technicians designing them and doing “their work” very well. Is this so hard to understand ?
    So the constant increase of computers, software and technology will lead to less work, no matter what, and less work in factories too, thanks to robots.
    So what on earth are all those millions laid off from their jobs going to do ? They will invent new lines of work ? they will update their skills to do exactly what ? Oh , I see program computers, so they automate even that little work that will be left.
    No matter what, there will be more and more people and less and less jobs, this will lead to a fight amongst the poor, to a fight of everyone against everyone, everyone blaming someone else that they are “lazy” and “don’t want to work”, while in all truth it is exactly the huge excess productive capacity of technology and applied science that has increased the productivity of work way beyond what we can presently grasp. This is not science fiction, it is now and reality.
    The only logical solution is free salaries, cheap rents (2,000 dollars a month salary, 200 dollars a month rent), mass transit BUSES, for everyone worldwide, and from that base those who are more talented can make more money.
    Of course this is utopia, it won’t happen because people have an ape brain, like to fight, like to beat up others, especially the weak.
    Maybe I am creating a “resource scarcity” myth in the opposite direction by thinking that work is limited in quantity, but I am sure real – effective work is limited, maybe financial instruments line of work can invent millions of products and hire millions of people…

  138. eightm October 5, 2010 at 6:13 am #

    check out:
    and other posts of old6598 and nameta9,
    learn the truth…

  139. eightm October 5, 2010 at 7:35 am #

    “1) credit card transactions : a computer does that, and if it doesn’t you can be sure that it will do it all in the near future, otherwise all the IT guys are really idiots if they can’t still figure it out;”
    Actually I take that back: millions of jobs will be created by creating ever mega complex programs with untold number of bugs, non interconnecting standards, etc. So more programmers (the less talented they are, the better) will have to modify, debug and especially add millions of lines of code for these very simple applications.
    I am always amazed at how bad software and computers are used for often very simple tasks: but this is the result of excess capacity, too many people, entities, corporations, standards, interacting and creating ever growing complexity and mass chaos. If they did it right the first time, you wouldn’t need so many people working…
    Most dysfunctional processes and organizations are also due to this excess capacity, too many insurance companies in health care, for example, bad choices of wars in defense, etc.
    And we need millions of lawyers to figure out the housing mess, and I hope each lawyer adds an ever growing layer of complexity so as to need trillions of lawyers…

  140. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 9:19 am #

    Georgia man faces $30,000 in fines for growing too many veggies in his yard.
    The rulers are going to fight reality all the way down, but this takes ridiculous to a whole new level.

  141. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 9:25 am #

    I thought the last paragraph of my post would solidify who I was frustrated with.
    Here’s a hint: it wasn’t you.
    Joust away.

  142. Headless October 5, 2010 at 9:31 am #

    Hernando De Soto really attempts to drive home the basis of civil society (being a dependable system of laws–property, specifically) in a discussion with Naomi Klein and Joseph Stiglitz.
    If you haven’t already seen it, you might find it worthwhile: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkErO-TwOeo

  143. Dr.Pangloss October 5, 2010 at 9:38 am #

    Good morning. I would like to discuss what we are doing to get ready for the long emergency (so many thanks to you, Mr. Kunstler for sharing your wisdom and your time).
    We have downsized our home (self-built) twice. I spent 2 months caulking every seam with silicon caulk. Then, superinsulated it. The ceiling is R-90, including 2 inches of polyurethane. We have a wood-oil Yukon forced hot air furnace (works even with no electricity) and it heats our hot water. The oil company estimates average oil use would be 2000 gal. in this climate, we use 400 gal., mostly hot water in the summer. We have 2 oil tanks and a third one outside. We are wired for generator and have 2 generators. We use 4 cords of wood a winter and have 8 dry cords in the basement that we cut. We sell and give away cords of wood each year. The wood ash goes on the gardens (full of potassium, calcium, some phosphorus and trace elements).
    We also have an insulated room in the basement, below ground, with a Jodel 600 airtight wood burning stove that you can cook on and heat the house, and futons and chairs to sleep on if needed.
    We have an small organic farm. We put in 60 fruit trees, many native since no spraying (pawpaw, persimmons, mulberry, apple,pear,cherry,plum etc., plus nut trees. Planted 60 berry bushes.
    We fenced 3 gardens, about 30,000 sq ft. (2700 sq. meters) total, double dug, removed rocks, added compost,
    manure, wood ash, etc. Some are raised bed “potager” French biointensive (a la Jeavons), some are field for wheat, Bloody Butcher field corn that we dry, grind for corn bread, feed the chickens and ducks, and save the seed. Also pmupkins, winter squash, potatoes, sweet potatoes, etc. We grow a huge amount of food and almost every day jobless people call and come pick buckets of food. Mr. Kunstler talks about food coming from 1500 miles away, ours travels about 1500 inches.
    We got rid of my wife’s SUV for a Volks diesel, went from 750 gallons a year to 200 gal for the same mileage. We could use the heating oil in an emergency in the car.
    This week I am installing a huge hand pump over my well. The water level is only down 30 feet but we are putting it down 100 feet. We have a septic system so the water and nutrients stay here, aren’t put in rivers and pumped out to sea, esp the Phosphorus..an irreplaceable element that may be limited in the future.
    We have had Hereford cattle in the past, before I got cancer, and hope to get them back. Also have chickens and Rouen ducks, and hope to get goats and pigs. The animals are free range and cared for. The manure is invaluable.
    We have cut our fossil fuel more than in half (not even counting the 400 gallons of fuel and equivalent used to feed each American). We hope to cut it in half again. We drive small cars, less, slower and take one fight a year. We try to mostly eat vegetables and fruits and grains. Growing your own food is a Revolutionary Act.
    It is important to take responsibility for yourself and get into good physical shape. We exercise but also work very hard on this type of farming so are in good condition, but, as a physician, I am always amazed at the morbidly obese people I see hobbling around.
    It is important to read alot to be aware of what is going on as the Ruling Class (both political parties) is stripmining the wealth of our country, absolutely destroying the middle class, sending millions of jobs abroad, using our military to police the world, etc.
    It is even more important to get yourself spiritually strong and prepared for hard times. Would like to hear what you are doing to prepare for “The Long Emergency”/”The Long Descent”.
    Best wishes and good luck. Dr. Pangloss

  144. jackieblue2u October 5, 2010 at 9:41 am #

    I know what you mean about things looking or rather ‘feeling shitty’ on the coast. I live on on of the US coasts. and we bought (and are losing) husband got sick, a house inland. only 1.5 hours inland by car, and / but Major change of feeling and attitude.
    I actually like inland. life is slower paced, and more family oriented, but now i am kinda stuck on coast, it has good points, can walk or bike if necessary.
    but yeah the attitudes are different in my experience also. the lifestyle is very fast paced on the coast and there are so many people.
    and actually they are Rude(r) on the coast.
    There is no open space. I love open space.

  145. The Mook October 5, 2010 at 9:48 am #

    Tripp, Try living in Bucks County, PA. Not only have many housing associations banned the hanging of laundry, but the neighbors in “legal” areas are complaining because it is an eyesore. No word on veggies yet, but that is most likely because the anti-hunters want the deer to eat tomatoes rather than their shrubbery.

  146. jackieblue2u October 5, 2010 at 10:19 am #

    Reply to RickinTacoma…Here I go again…I live in California.
    Saw the Majestic Redwood Forest being clearcut by
    MAXXAM from Houston who did a hostile takover of Pacific Lumber.
    RAPED the pension plans. “He” did this with Simplicity also I believe. CLEARCUT much of the Forest, is is truly SICKENING. I’ve been there to SEE it.
    The P**** from Houston who must be ‘well’ connected, hardly anything on him when you google. Remember Milken and Boesky, they went to jail, and this guy was “allegedly” ha the 3rd ‘party’ in the criminal S & L scandal in the 80’s? He used the junk bonds to take over Pacific Lumber, and Wreck the Forest.
    and peoples lives. This you can google. Then claimed bancrupty and the Taxpayers, I guess govt. bailed him out 2 BILLION $$$.
    imo he is a very sick puppy. and DANGEROUS.
    I went to a meeting and one of the bosses at P.L. said to my face “sooner or later it will all be clearcut.”
    I read somewhere but can’t remember the quote exactly, that it’s impossible to convince someone that they are wrong when it’s how they make their living. you probably get the idea. wish I knew the quote, it’s quite good.
    I know what you mean about veil of tears.
    I am 54, and tired.
    I do think that whatever good we do or try to do has to be done locally.
    The U.S. is in for major readjustment.
    I miss the 70’s. Things seemed more down to earth and Real. People seemed to care, and not just about $$$.

  147. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    Amen brother. And let’s not forget that NAFTA drove many, many Mexican farmers out of work (subsidized corn and corn products from US much cheaper than Mexican-grown products), so that many of those same farmers now come north looking for work, any work. And they do the absolutely crappiest worst jobs available here. See “Food Inc.” movie here for more info on that subject.

  148. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 10:40 am #

    Asoka: Networker et al are saying (I believe) that it is important to

  149. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 10:42 am #

    Whoops — that was weird —
    Important to recognize Reality as it is now — as much as we can define what is real (yes, there are differing points of view) — but recognize the situation so that we can PROCEED to make some sort of positive response to it. You know, work to make things better. But we must SEE the status quo before we can change the status quo. Right?

  150. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 10:47 am #

    Our need for pretty is killing us in so many ways – pretty lawns, pretty highways, pretty toilets. The world I imagine is prettier than the current one, but getting people to think of gardens and orchards, and compost piles, and low energy living systems (like clothes lines) as pretty will be a chore! They’re pretty to me because they mean that I might have an outside shot at meeting my grandchildren.
    And to be honest that’s one of the main reasons I moved to a poor neighborhood. So we could make more of those important changes with less fuss. That and we didn’t want a mortgage.

  151. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 10:49 am #

    Good venting. You are a writer at heart, I think.

  152. nika October 5, 2010 at 10:51 am #

    Dont hint, obscurely, just say what you mean to hint at.

  153. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    Read them. Both are visions by only one side of the spectrum. Things may not necessarily pan out that way. But your haven in western Mass. sounds lovely, especially the wine part. Well, the mushrooms, too. Black Trumpets! We’ll be out there in TLE to join up (from Boston) if you don’t shoot us :).

  154. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 11:03 am #

    “I read somewhere but can’t remember the quote exactly, that it’s impossible to convince someone that they are wrong when it’s how they make their living.”
    I know it as:
    ‘It’s hard to make someone believe in something that their paycheck depends on them not believing.’
    Or something to that effect. Fortunately for the planet, peak energy is behind us, or will be very shortly, and recovery is already underway. Let’s just hope that some of the redwoods make it through. ‘Tis an absolute crime to murder those majestic beings.

  155. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 11:09 am #

    YOU ARE AMAZING. I’m envious of your position, wherever it is. I live in an urban neighborhood. We have an organic vegetable garden and a large compost pile. We recycle as much as possible. We had the house insulated to save energy (natural gas heat). I wash in cold water and hang some of my clothes out to dry. We make grape jelly from wild concord grapes. We buy mostly organic and local produce, dairy, and meat. We try not to flush toilets all the time (I know, sounds gross, but saves water). We use energy saving appliances. We wash pots and pans in a dishpan instead of running water. We turn off all lights not in direct use. We clean the street and sidewalks. We shovel the snow from three houses. We maintain acquaintance with as many neighbors as we can meet. We send our children to public (city) schools. We volunteered in schools, neighborhood sports leagues, and Unitarian church. I buy all of my clothes at a thrift shop except for undergarments and some shoes. I try not to consume too much “stuff.” I hope all of these things are helping the world in some way.

  156. HiFolks October 5, 2010 at 11:46 am #

    Thanks for your post. Feels good to know I’m not the only one.

  157. helen highwater October 5, 2010 at 11:51 am #

    There’s a great line in a song by Charlie Murphy – “It’s such a stone cold groove to be part of something so out of control.”

  158. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 12:01 pm #

    DR.Pangloss and Mila, you’re both amazing! Wild Concord jelly sounds delish.
    We are developing a 1/4 acre urban permaculture site here in a poor neighborhood of Macon, GA. It’s not a food desert by definition, but my neighbors seem to consume an inordinate amount of their calories in the form of candy and soda, so we are trying to offer an alternative. My wife uses her sociology background to research and propogate information about the relationship between diet quality and tendency to violent crime and recidivism. I use my ecology background to develop nutrient-dense, integrated human ecosystems.
    On our quarter acre we are building 7000-10,000 gallons of water collection storage; composting toilets to retain sanitary fertility onsite; graywater treatment that handles the watering needs for 2/3 of the property, planted in perennial food crops and ecological support; low-energy upgrades to the house like massive insulation and solar attic fans; producing goat meat and dairy products, eggs, chicken, turkey, duck, rabbit, and honey and beeswax; vermicomposting/soil building systems; organic annual vegetables, diverse herbs and related saleable products, tree fruit including olives, berries, and mushrooms (oyster and shiitake in commercial quantities). I teach an after-school program in ecology, sell mushrooms to local restaurants between Macon and Atlanta, and will be selling nursery stock propogated from the species onsite as they come online. We also do workshops here for interested community members, like graywater and water catchment classes, and help build community gardens.
    All within a project scope of 2 years and $20,000 total. We’re 6 months and about $11,500 in at this point, property included.
    When we’re “done” we’ll have at least 500 macro species (many more micro) contributing to site resilience, income, and creating a regional hub of biodiversity from which to revegetate middle Georgia. (Or the Burgundy region of France if all goes well!)
    In the longer term my goal is to help promote the Keyline System for broadacre water and carbon sequestration and soil building on vast areas of regional agricultural/pastoral tracts.
    If there is any way I can be of assistance to anyone here, please let me know. You can contact me and follow our progress at http://www.smallbatchgarden.blogspot.com

  159. Pepper Spray October 5, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    The convoluted mortgage mess is already wreaking havoc. You can bet nervous derivatives traders have their fingers hovering over the sell button while reciting the first law of panic; Panic First!
    On the ground there were people like me looking at foreclosures. I was close to buying a few weeks ago, now that is off, I wouldn’t take one if you gave it to me. This situation may start chaos in the shadow banking system which is leveraged to the tune of hundreds of trillions of $ dollars in MBS, CMBS and CDOs. Things could get interesting very fast.
    It’s always a good idea to be prepared http://www.stungunstopepperspray.com/

  160. BeantownBill October 5, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    Right on!

  161. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    Interesting post this week JHK. I particularly liked the accuracy of this sentiment.
    “A conspiracy theorist would be in nirvana with all this, but it was just plain vanilla fraud in a time when fraud was over-taking apple pie and Mom as the defining quality of our national character.”
    The whole country went completely crazy over real estate and mortgages – ’04 to ’07.
    Without the Bush sanctioned bailout of Wall St. some kind of return to *normalcy* would have occurred by now.
    But financial fraud in real estate is mitigated by the fact that “REAL” property is out there somewhere underlying all the goofy paper – if we lived in “normal” times.
    Energy descent may make these times different from normal.
    And that’s where we need to focus.

  162. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 1:20 pm #

    And since JHK has us on finance for the week, I believe this comment from John66 bears repeating:
    “Keep an eye on the dollar.
    “The Fall of the Dollar” will be the phrase that historians will refer to this point in time in much the same vein of significance as “The Great Depression,” “The Civil War” and “The American Revolution.”
    I agree. Social security and similar obligations will not be eliminated. They will be inflated away.
    If no new technofix appears, then US living standards will — simply —- slowly —–degrade.
    – unless/until something triggers a doomer style collapse –

  163. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    Actually, I am in awe of people like you who are doing so much to try to make things better…I can barely muddle along with my early-blighted tomatoes. Here’s to you and yours! Keep up the good fight.
    When we retire OUT of our urban lives, we have great plans and ideas…if things hold together that long…gray water catchment and composting toilets will be key; gravity well, solar hot water system, and many other ideas rolling around. Much more gardening, too. If things fall apart sooner, the rest of my family is up in Maine already doing the back-to-the-land lifestyle with wood, geo-thermal, gravity well, outhouses, huge gardens, forests around them, and so forth. I guess we figure we can escape up there if the SHTF.

  164. Cash October 5, 2010 at 2:29 pm #

    I don’t know about you but I’m not that broken up about losing to Chelsea. I didn’t see the game but I read some reviews and they said that the Gunners had a lot of possession and made a lot of chances but just could pot the damn thing. Oh well.
    What do you think about Liverpool? Really stinking up the joint.
    About saving: I know what you’re saying but I look at “money” as just a placeholder for something “real” be it a chicken, a sack of spuds or whatever.
    Money only has value if there’s something real behind it. Now having said that, with people like Ben Bernanke running the printing presses at the Fed money will come to measure nothing real. That’s why the price of gold is doing what it’s doing.
    So when I say that people have forgotten to save for a “rainy day” what in effect I’m saying is that people are too trusting or maybe complacent in assuming that everything will be OK. In an agricultural setting that would mean assuming the crops will always come in without a hitch, that there will always be rain on time and in the required amounts, that there will never be untimley frosts that mess things up.
    So saving for a rainy day in my mind is just the monetary equivalent of canning veggies for winter for when they aren’t growing or putting away a stockpile of grain or something like that in case you have a bad harvest next season.
    It’s not an exact parallel with an agricultural situation. In our present world for most people a “bad harvest” is a job loss or a spell of bad health where you can’t work or where your ever lovin’ health insurance company says your condition isn’t covered.
    Based on fear? Sure is.

  165. Freedom Guerrilla October 5, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    Ohhhh yeahhh.
    Nice post.
    You see the story about the Hungarian town destroyed by “red toxic sludge?” For every ton of aluminum extracted, 2 tons of toxic sludge is produced.

  166. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 2:37 pm #

    There we go. You see shit like that, and it just makes you feel so defeated! Asoka, if you are still there — it’s not JHK’s writing that freaks us out…it’s REALITY that freaks us out. Stuff like Tommy’s link here.

  167. Schwerpunkt October 5, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    Thank you JHK for making my Mondays better – albeit by dark commentary.
    I used to run a small buisness in a small town upstate NY close to Albany. I was getting a enews from the local COC, but their last communication was so out of touch with what is going on, I thought it Soviet and took myself off the list. Pardon me while I quote the magical realism thinking in a selection I call, “CAPITALISM IN OUR LIFETIME!” – mind you, I did not change a word except for truncating the selection at the “blah blah blah” point.
    Regional Chamber Strategic Alliance Feasibility Study
    Think of today’s economic crisis as a glorious opportunity to shed old habits and activities while effecting positive change and building new strengths that will foster a strong prosperous future.
    …County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors engaged the OpXGroup to conduct a Regional Chamber Strategic Alliance Feasibility Study to explore ways for the chambers of commerce in Greene County to creatively align in order to more proactively support the regional business community. In a robust way this will establish strategic alliances to support the rural landscape by creating an economic climate that enhances the viability of working lands and conserves natural lands. This will help existing places thrive by taking care of assets and investments such as downtowns, Main Streets, existing infrastructure, and places that the Community values, and create great new places by building vibrant, enduring neighborhoods and communities that people, especially young people, don’t want to leave.
    .. blah, blah, blah….

  168. bubblesthecat October 5, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    All of you including Jim, your not going to want collapse not in the US anyway, the masses current intellect cannot fathom what happening around them. The republican party put up a silly soccer mum as a vice-president hopeful what does that tell you. Your all screwed and your going to experience a new set of realities that will not be broadcast on TV…the end of the middle classes…beep beep game over.

  169. Cash October 5, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    An invasion is what our ancestors did in order for you and I to sit smugly behind our keyboards sipping coffee…Just be grateful. But for the grace of God, it could have been you or I. – Turkle
    I can only assume that, given your highly emotional post, you are conscience stricken over what was done to New World peoples, that something must be done to atone for the barbarisms unleashed by our forebears.
    So when are you going to move back to the land of your ancestors? Wouldn’t be right to stay here would it especially as it’s stolen land.
    If your contention is that people ought to be able to cross national borders as they please without interference by people already there then you ought to advocate for the right of American citizens to move to Mexico and set up housekeeping without annoyances like applying to the Mexican government.
    In 2007 the Mexican President Felipe Calderon said this: “I have said that Mexico does not stop at its border, that wherever there is a Mexican, there is Mexico.” I assume that this will be OK by you.
    And no doubt Calderon feels the same about Americans living on Mexican soil, that wherever there are Americans there is the United States of America.

  170. GetAbike October 5, 2010 at 3:09 pm #

    Saw this little gem the other day by anonymous (that guy really cranks out the quotes!)
    “The Pessimist complains about the wind, the Optimist expects it to change
    and the Realist adjusts his sails.”

  171. Eleuthero October 5, 2010 at 3:29 pm #

    ******************** THE BOX ******************
    I hope that you economic bears out there who
    don’t mistake the stock market for the real
    economy did NOT short the stock markets. As
    I stated last week, the nominal Dow could rise
    because deep pockets realize that there’s no
    money to be made in real estate or building
    plant and equipment to make goods for bankrupt
    consumers. Bears should just STAY OUT. Bulls
    had better realize that this is a game of musical
    chairs with one hundred players and TWO chairs.
    However, the US economy is now in a huge box.
    It is well known that the US economy cannot stand
    oil prices above $85 for any length of time.
    The problem with the money goosing is that
    EVERYTHING gets goosed along with the devaluation
    of the dollar … including oil, base metals,
    and food. Thus, the irony is that the very
    money printing that levitates the Dow also
    sows the seeds of its destruction if food and
    fuel inflate. Remember, no one is more
    determined to TRY to prevent deflation than
    Ben Bernanke. His “cure” is worse than the
    To add insult to injury, the banks refusal to
    foreclose, under the guise of “compassion”
    PENALIZES people who pay their bills and
    punishes home builders even more. A home
    builder would rather sell a home at a cheaper
    value than to have a stagnant house that cannot
    be sold at all.
    I laughed when I saw that ISM Services Sector
    expansion today, Tuesday. So Best Buy is
    hiring?? Gee, that’ll last long [sic]. Let’s
    hire sales personnel for a consumer “boom” that
    is never going to happen. Indeed, in many
    industries, salaries are in FREEFALL, especially
    technology. That Web job writing HTML and
    Javascript that made $85K in 1999 is now a
    $14/hour burger flipper wage.
    This ballistic rise of the stock markets could
    last through this month. However, I wouldn’t
    want to short it or be long it. In its own
    way, it’s as dangerous and bad as the 1999
    market giving the realities of US wages,
    personal debt, and jobs.
    Better to pull up a front row chair, enjoy the
    view, do NOTHING, and wait it out. When this
    sucker blows it has the real potential to make
    2008 look like an expansion. The problem for
    premature bears, however, is, as Keynes warned:
    “The markets can stay irrational longer than
    you can remain solvent.”
    Unfortunately, this is not a parody with a nice
    light ending like the fifth act of a Shakesperean
    comedy. It’s more like sarcasm that appears
    funny at first until you get the deeper subtext
    of the message.

  172. Eleuthero October 5, 2010 at 3:41 pm #

    Dr. Pangloss,
    The problem with the Tea Party is that its
    messages are at odds with themselves. They’re
    often revisionist religious folks who imagine
    that the Founders wanted God in the classroom,
    statehouse, and courthouse even though the
    whole idea of America was to get away from
    the Church of England BECAUSE its tentacles
    were all through public and civil life.
    The Tea Partiers are the party of “limited
    government but don’t you touch my Medicare”.
    Their message is one of anger … not
    unjustified but not intelligently channeled
    into one coherent message that is TRULY
    attuned to the Founders vision.
    Also, I’m not impressed by many of its
    candidates like the laughable O’Donnell of
    Delaware who is a classic out-of-control
    powermonger who uses campaign monies for
    private usage … a felony.
    Finally, though I cannot prove it, I’d bet
    that the average Tea Party person weighs
    about twenty pounds more than the average
    American and with about ten less IQ points.
    I think their main message is “I know I’m
    screwed and I have to lash out at SOMETHING”.
    We need a viable third party. The Tea Party,
    however, is not viable. It is underfunded,
    conceptually at odds with its own message,
    and effete.

  173. turkle October 5, 2010 at 3:42 pm #

    Well, yeah, now that you mention it, Americans should be able to go live in Mexico, though most people seem to like it here better. I would have no problem with it. Like I said, you should be able to live where ever you want to.
    I happen to like it where I am. I don’t feel guilty about how this land was taken hundreds of years ago, because I wasn’t alive. But I do realize that it has shaped history ever since, and I don’t pretend to have some moral high ground about this being my first world, sacred homeland. I’m also not so arrogant as to personally tell other people where they can and can’t live. If the US government wants to get involved in it and boot people out, that’s fine. It is what they do.
    But I’m not going to puff out my chest and talk about how other people can’t come here. If you are so emotionally involved in the issue (I’m actually not….non-withstanding what you thought was an “emotional” post…more like a rant), why don’t you go work for ICE? Anonymous whining about illegal immigration on the internet is useless and pathetic. It is the tactic of Tea Baggers. Anyone who has any say in the matter is not reading this blog.
    Oh, and you’re still an American when you leave here, in order for Uncle Sam to get the tax revenue. They are also interested in all your foreign bank accounts, when you live in the US and sometimes even when you don’t.
    The “move back to where your ancestors” meme is not original, and it doesn’t make sense. Everyplace was taken from someone else, if you look back far enough. If you followed that idiotic logic far enough, we’d all end of in the Great Rift Valley in Africa.
    So I guess my real question is, why complain about illegals on the internet? They’re not reading it. No one in the government who can effect change is reading your comments. So why do it? Does it make you feel oh-so-good to be in a “1st world” country while Mexicans crawl across the desert in order to get here? Does it make you feel better about yourself that you’re an American and they are people in limbo with few rights? Or is it about “they are teeking er jobs”? I just want to know where you’re coming from.

  174. Eleuthero October 5, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

    The amount of jobs creation in the private
    sector has been ALL service sector and in
    the low ten thousands per month. It’s the
    shallowest “recovery” of jobs of any postwar
    recovery in US history … including the
    Great Depression.
    I think you’re like TBU … if your stocks
    are going up you’re optimistic because you
    think that’s the economy. Yet all the sober,
    dispassionate, nonpartisan indicators like
    the Economic Cycle Research Institute (which
    has a better forecasting record than any
    agency in history … no recession predictions
    that did not occur, no expansion predictions
    the led to recession … none) show that growth
    in Q4 will be between zero and 1.0 percent.
    Stop “throwing” statistics at this site without
    comparing your numbers to historical benchmarks.
    As usual, you just look like a cheerleader on

  175. treebeardsuncle October 5, 2010 at 3:48 pm #

    Then the oil will be brought in by tankers and gasoline will go up a bit, maybe to $3.50/gallon. What do you think?

  176. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    Turkle, Cash, the Chamber of Commerce, TEA Party Types, and Open Border Advocates Everywhere:
    Cash – I was planning a response to Turkle and you beat me to it. To your response I would add that Peak Energy and/or Peak Environment argues against ANYTHING that increases US populations – by legal means or by illegal or open borders.
    And yes, to several posters who are bashing the COC – all Chambers of Commerce are locked into a *growth at all costs* mentality. That is why COC’s take positions in favor of increased immigration and other things that will be to the long term detriment of the Earth and the US.
    And I’ve got to ask how many TEA partiers are business people who back the COC’s one way or another – even though most TEA’s are personally anti-illegal immigration.
    And how many TEA partiers want to cut taxes and spending but vote and advocate for a “Strong National Defense,” like it was Holy Grail.
    This comment thread is like a cross section of American life, except with goats, gardens, and chickens in the mix.
    ClusterFucked we be, Mateys!

  177. Eleuthero October 5, 2010 at 3:57 pm #

    I just went over to dice.com and noted that
    since the start of 2010 their net number of
    listed jobs is DOWN from 80,000 to 70,000.
    Software is one of the few areas left in
    America where we are still conceded to be
    the best yet even there signs of an expansion
    are nowhere to be found.
    Also, those jobs in tech that are still there
    have wages in freefall. I know because I’m
    the guy who is constantly talking to companies
    and recruiters on behalf of students. You
    should hear those students salaries compared
    with 1999 … which was a true boom. It’s

  178. San Jose Mom 51 October 5, 2010 at 3:59 pm #

    I harvested three butternut squashes from my very modest, California-sized backyard today. I’m not worthy to worship at the horticultural feet of Trippticket or Pangloss…but at least I can cook!
    Here’s my favorite recipe for butternut squash soup:
    3 T butter
    1 1/2 C chopped onions
    4 C diced butternut squash
    2 tart apples
    2 cloves minced garlic
    3 T flour
    1 t curry powder
    pinch of nutmeg
    4 C chicken broth
    1 1/2 C milk
    grated rind of one orange
    salt and pepper to taste
    In a large frying pan, melt butter and saute onions over medium heat until soft. Add squash, apple and garlic. Saute for 7 minutes, stirring constantly. Add flour, curry powder and nutmeg, stirring constantly to blend. Slowly add chicken broth, milk and orage rind, stirring to combine. Simmer 30 minutes until squash is very soft.
    Puree in batches in blender or food processor. Serve hot. (I garnish with chives if I have them handy.)
    I loved JHK’s descriptions of home-cooked meals in the “The Witch of Hebron.” The best part of life is sitting down with my family for a home-cooked meal and eating in a relaxed manner.
    PS When you grate the orange, do it gently so that you just get the orange part. The white part is too tart and will ruin the soup.

  179. turkle October 5, 2010 at 4:07 pm #

    Peak Energy and Peak Environment (peak whatever actually) are global issues. Why do you think it matters where a few million Mexicans end up living? Is this thinking part of some NA lifeboat scenario? I’m interested in following your logic through to see what you perceive as the endgame to PO and associated problems. Why do you feel that preventing immigration will do any good as we run out of oil? I don’t follow.
    I mean, since Americans use, what, 25% of the world’s resources and have 4% of the population, we should actually be either a) massively decreasing our per capita energy use and/or b) decreasing our population. The immigration issue could fall under b, but then again, if these people are not living in the US, they are someplace. I’m not sure why you think it is so important if they are in Mexico or the United States, though I suppose they’d be using fewer resources in Mexico.
    Neither a or b is going to happen, anyways, so, yes, I agree, ClusterFudged all the way.
    If Mexico collapses, what do you think that will do to the United States and to the border, e.g. you ain’t seen nothing yet, hombre.
    We should be bombarding Mexico with birth control instead of illegal firearms. We should be helping them stabilize their government and fight the drug lords that have taken over half the country.
    But instead of helping Mexico with its problems in order that half its population doesn’t want to come here, instead, you’re going to prevent millions of people from crossing a 1000+ mile border between a very rich and a very poor country.
    Good luck with it. I’m curious to see how that works out long term. (not so great thusfar)
    I think I get read wrong a lot on this site. I’m trying to stir up the pot a bit. Americans being so against immigration is just kind of odd. Heck, most of us got our asses kicked out of Europe and came over here on a boat with nothing but our britches. And we didn’t have to answer to “papers please” when we got here.

  180. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 4:14 pm #

    Recipe looks great. The best part of my life, too, is cooking dinner and sitting down with the family. My teenage boys LOVE it and often talk about how their friends do NOT have meals with their families, and how sad it is. My older son, away at college, comes home and talks about how much he misses dinner with the family. Now that’s a legacy.

  181. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 4:16 pm #

    Yes, Turkle, PoC believes it is a sort of lifeboat issue. I’ve questioned him about that before. “If they move here, they’ll start consuming at the U.S. rate of consumption (high).” We can’t have that. It’s not a very rational argument. But I’m not glib enough to counter it with something clever.

  182. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 4:26 pm #

    Whoa, Turkle, I am talking about immigrants to the US of all types, legal and illegal.
    I don’t know why you think it’s all about the Mexicans. ?
    This is a point that has been battled frequently on CFN. I’m of the logical opinion that a potential immigrant to the US does a lot more global environmental damage once he is IN THE US – because of per capita resource use IN the United States.
    I agree with you 100% about this:
    “We should be bombarding Mexico with birth control instead of illegal firearms. We should be helping them stabilize their government and fight the drug lords that have taken over half the country.”
    And disagree with you about this:
    “…you’re going to prevent millions of people from crossing a 1000+ mile border between a very rich and a very poor country”
    I think the best thing we can do for ourselves, the Planet, and ALL other countries is to stop out of control immigration to the US – legal and otherwise.
    And Mila, as I’ve said, I come here for the logical intellectual challenge. If I’m wrong somebody can point out why.
    So far I have seen EMOTIONAL arguments in favor of more US immigration. I haven’t seen a LOGICAL argument – based on global environmental considerations – that immigration to the US is a good thing or sustainable for the long term.

  183. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 4:39 pm #

    Okay. Because of NAFTA, thousands of Mexican farmers who used to grow corn (a huge commodity in Mexico) are now unable to do so because cheap SUBSIDIZED corn from the U.S. is now sold in Mexico at lower prices than ordinary Mexican farmers can possibly produce it using their old-fashioned small-farmer ways (as opposed to big Agribusiness in U.S.). Now those out-of-work farmers come to the U.S. looking for work. Who drove them out of business? That’s not even an emotional response, it’s just a fact. Let’s stop selling subsidized corn to them, and then there won’t be a problem. Oh, and who do you suppose is going to work in our slaughterhouses, currently considered by OSHA to be the most dangerous jobs in the country? It’s almost all immigrants (both legal and illegal) who are working in the slaughterhouses. It would certainly be interesting to see who does all those HORRIBLE jobs if you (or people who agree with you) succeed in getting rid of all of the immigrants. I would lay a wager that there are plenty of big business employers who don’t want to get rid of illegal immigrants, because they truly are the only people willing to do the most horrible jobs that exist in this country.

  184. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 4:44 pm #

    Oh, and I still say that logically speaking, if oil is a finite resource (we all agree on that?) that if immigrants to the U.S. use up oil faster because they start to consume at the U.S. HIGH rate of consumption…what on earth does it really matter? The oil will run out eventually, no matter how fast or slow it is used up. And I also contend that the numbers you are talking about (of immigrants) would not make that much of a difference in oil usage, over and above the energy they would use in their own countries. Yes, it’s more, but do you have any actual figures in barrels of oil that you think they would use up? How many barrels of oil does the “average” American use in a year? How many barrels of oil does the “average” Mexican use in a year (we’ll use Mexicans as an immigrant sample).

  185. budizwiser October 5, 2010 at 5:05 pm #

    One thing that Jim inspires is a heavy emphasis on labels -both as metaphor and as generalizations.
    Every time I read many of the posts I cringe at all the pointless, mostly meaningless terms given to some group of supposed like-minded souls.
    This whole deal about aiming to define or otherwise claim to know what these folks are about is as about as futile as political science can get.
    For the most part, I suspect many of “them” don’t exactly know what each other actually thinks either. However, like anyone else I imagine some all encompassing themes that run through what I call the “status quo” and CF nation visionaries.
    I guess what I’m getting at is that we all are looking for that seminal event that can get a nation – at least much of it – to pull it’s collective head out of it’s ass and realize why some people like things just fine and why some of the others are making noises about “dooms day” future.
    Much of what I don’t get is how poorly the “long view” is being reported. And how and why Peak Oil isn’t as popular as free crazy pet videos on yahoo.

  186. asia October 5, 2010 at 5:13 pm #

    ‘Because of NAFTA’…translates to Because of clinton and those who voted gatt/nafta…si?

  187. The Mook October 5, 2010 at 5:19 pm #

    Comment heard at work today from the mouth of a Marine. Is Washington Crossing (PA.) near Jersey?

  188. San Jose Mom 51 October 5, 2010 at 5:19 pm #

    I agree that the U.S. should encourage birth control, but involving ourselves in their corruption and drug lord wars?…forget about it.
    I’m not willing to send my son off to Mexico to solve their problems. NO WAY. I list my political affiliation on facebook as “GET THE HELL OUT OF AFGHANISTAN.”
    The U.S. should practice minding our own business. My son recently had to fill out a selective service recently..ugh. I’m OK with defending the 50 states, but that’s it.
    I didn’t vote for Ross Perot back when he ran for president, but I’ve never forgotton his catchphrase, “Ain’t no laughter after NAFTA.”
    “With friends like Isreal, who needs enemies?”

  189. asia October 5, 2010 at 5:24 pm #

    presb…turned snake handlers…hahaha
    have you read of ireland..where 500 women signed on to buy 5,000$ handbags as the ’emerald isle’ ‘gorge out’ was financed by suburbanization..oops..the bubble burst
    or check this,,its much more dire:

  190. turkle October 5, 2010 at 5:27 pm #

    “I don’t know why you think it’s all about the Mexicans. ?”
    Um, cuz it is…just like, run the percentages dude.
    Plus Mexico shares a contiguous land border with us.

  191. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 5:42 pm #

    “I don’t know why you think it’s all about the Mexicans. ?”
    Um, cuz it is…just like, run the percentages dude.
    Plus Mexico shares a contiguous land border with us.
    I have come realize that being opposed to illegal immigration is considered RACIST.
    Being opposed to all immigration to the US, illegal or illegal – may be something? – but it certainly cannot be considered racist.
    Again, viewed logically, all points of entry to the US must be secure, whether a 1000 mile land border OR the smallest airport.

  192. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 5:46 pm #

    I agree that the U.S. should encourage birth control, but involving ourselves in their corruption and drug lord wars?
    Reread the posts, SJ. Neither Turkle nor I said anything about sending troops to Mexico. One great way to help the Mexican govt. would be to legalize marijuana.
    And if the border cannot be fully secured, we’re going to have their corruption and drug lord wars on US soil – in fact, I believe we already have this.
    Secure the border!

  193. turkle October 5, 2010 at 5:50 pm #

    I see you are quite the isolationist. When do you think US troops should be committed to other countries? If it is the case that you only believe they should be deployed for domestic purposes or in critical/urgent situations, then couldn’t we do with about 1/10 of our current military manpower? We already spend more on our military than the rest of the world’s countries COMBINED.
    Seems a much worthier cause than futzing around in Afghanistan to try and solve Mexico’s problems or at least help them, because their problems directly impact us. We share a large land border with them. We have a lot of trade arrangements with them. Many of their people work in the US, either legally or illegally. Millions of people migrate to the US from there or attempt to. So, yes, it sure as hell is our business what happens there, far more so than in any other country. What happens there affects us.
    There are other ways to alleviate Mexico’s problems with drugs and the drug wars other than “sending in the troops.” Legalizing all drugs would make it so that the criminal element would not have a part to play and would evaporate. There would be no incentive to smuggle drugs across the border. Legalized drugs would likely be cheaper than street drugs. But that solution is politically untenable. The prison guards union doesn’t like that idea, I’m sure.
    Regarding our troops, I can’t think of a better mission than combating a powerful, lawless drug insurgency in a country that borders us. We have troops in Columbia battling the insurgency there and helping the central government. We have troops all over the world, in fact. If Mexico is not worthy of receiving our military aid, then no countries are.

  194. asoka October 5, 2010 at 5:54 pm #

    E., stop distorting what I am saying.

    if your stocks
    are going up you’re optimistic because you
    think that’s the economy.

    I never even mentioned the stock market. The market had nothing to do with my post.

    The amount of jobs creation in the private sector has been ALL service sector

    This is simply untrue. You cannot be so ignorant about the recovery. SOME of the new jobs have been in the manufacturing sector. I can prove it if you want proof.

    Stop “throwing” statistics at this site without comparing your numbers to historical benchmarks.

    I wasn’t “throwing” statistics around. I was making a specific historical comparison between 2008 and 2010 with respect to the GDP (which I defined) and I cited my source: http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/gdp_glance.htm

    As usual, you just look like a cheerleader on meth.

    No comment.

  195. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 5:58 pm #

    I don’t know if you are aware of it, but there is a subconscious undercurrent of racism or something? in your post.
    It would certainly be interesting to see who does all those HORRIBLE jobs if you (or people who agree with you) succeed in getting rid of all of the immigrants.
    Mila – you are saying that this honest labor is so HORRIBLE that it is BENEATH THE DIGNITY of ANY legal US citizen.
    Yet you think it is perfectly acceptable work for a person here illegally.
    And of course you are correct:
    I would lay a wager that there are plenty of big business employers who don’t want to get rid of illegal immigrants, because they truly are the only people willing to do the most horrible jobs that exist in this country
    That’s why the hopelessly pro-growth COC is in favor of illegal immigration and liberal immigration policies.
    And that, Turkle and Mila is why:
    Uncontrolled immigration is bad for the US and bad for the Planet.

  196. turkle October 5, 2010 at 6:06 pm #

    Why does everyone pick on asoka? I think its because he shows some optimism and hope, which are scary things around the CFN. If the world isn’t doomed, then wtf am I going to do with 10,000 cans of canned pork n’ beans?!

  197. turkle October 5, 2010 at 6:10 pm #

    Here’s the deal. You CAN always find someone to do the dirty work who is a US citizen or here legally. However, you’d have to pay them a lot more with better benefits. And the businesses would rather pay low wages to people who can’t complain about it (or anything without risk of being deported). So it makes sense for these businesses to be pro-immigration, specifically pro illegal immigration (at least behind closed doors), in order that they can have access to this cheap and compliant labor supply.
    “Uncontrolled immigration is bad for the US and bad for the Planet.”
    I don’t see how this conclusion follows from anything that you wrote. Care to explain further?
    I would say more that uncontrolled breeding of humans is bad for the planet but I’m not sure how uncontrolled immigration is so terrible.

  198. asoka October 5, 2010 at 6:17 pm #

    E. said: “The amount of jobs creation in the private sector has been ALL service sector”
    You are ignoring that my post specifically referenced (in bold letters) the first quarter of 2010. Unfortunately for you, private sector manufacturing jobs were added in the first quarter of 2010. Here is my source: http://www.epi.org/publications/entry/jobs_picture_20100507/

    April jobs gains were widespread across various industries and sectors. Temporary help services added 26,200 jobs, the seventh straight month of gains. Manufacturing added 44,000 jobs, its fourth straight month of gains. Manufacturing has added 101,000 since December, with durable goods manufacturing adding 88,000, and nondurable goods manufacturing adding 13,000 in that period. Retail trade added 12,400 jobs in April, while food services added 21,000. Health care added 20,100 in April.

    E., if you want to come at me with stupid meth cheerleader remarks, at least have something to back up your false accusations: “The amount of jobs creation in the private sector has been ALL service sector”
    Not true for the first quarter 2010, which was the subject of my post. I’m not throwing statistics around. I’m defining my terms and specifying my time periods and citing my sources.

  199. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 6:17 pm #

    Look, I live in north Georgia, a HUGE poultry producing section of the US.
    The poultry industry was dominant here long before illegal immigrants were available to do those jobs.
    So who worked in the poultry plants? Who worked in the hatcheries? Who caught 30,000 chickens in one chicken house, shoved them in cages, and loaded them on trucks?
    I’ll tell you who – native born citizens of all skin colors.
    Rarely do you see a native born American working in a chicken plant now. They won’t work as cheap and they won’t work as hard as the illegals – so Fielddale Farms and Purdue Poultry HATE American citizens as workers.
    And Turkel, just saw your last post. So, to keep using food (chicken) as an example – food is insanely cheap in the US, and illegal labor is a large part of the reason why. Cheap food enables us as a society to overconsume in all other areas – to the detriment of the rest of the planet.
    We’re exporting cheap food and American-style agriculture around the globe. This is leading to overpopulation.
    “Changing the World – one mind at the time.”

  200. treebeardsuncle October 5, 2010 at 6:27 pm #

    That sounded too much like Hi, Fuckers. The shit’s on the table. What’s cooking?

  201. treebeardsuncle October 5, 2010 at 6:34 pm #

    I don’t have much sympathy for the trans-gendered. Actually I find them rather repulsive. Actually, I don’t really care that much about peak oil either. I just come here because I hate a lot of people and am looking to say whatever I feel like with almost no consequences.

  202. asoka October 5, 2010 at 6:35 pm #

    E. said: “show that growth in Q4 will be between zero and 1.0 percent.”
    The subject of my post dealt with 2010 first quarter, precisely because I wanted to deal with REAL numbers.
    Q4 is not in yet.
    You are dealing with a crystal ball, citing numbers for the future.
    All the talk on this site about dealing with reality, and all people want to talk about is how bad it is going to be in a fantasized future when TSHTF… which could be any day now, maybe tomorrow afternoon at 2:00 p.m.

  203. turkle October 5, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

    Ahaha. Well, at least you’re honest.

  204. turkle October 5, 2010 at 6:42 pm #

    “Mila – you are saying that this honest labor is so HORRIBLE that it is BENEATH THE DIGNITY of ANY legal US citizen.”
    Naw, you’re not reading him right. He’s saying that the immigrants are the ones willing to do the work, not that this work is inherently beneath an American. It’s more like a hypothetical question of, if you removed all the illegals tomorrow, could you fill all the job vacancies in places like slaughter houses, etc. It is an interesting question. I tend to think that, yes, we could because the labor market is so loose right now, but it would require an overall of things like the welfare system. Because right now not working and collecting government money is superior in most ways to having a dangerous, menial job that doesn’t pay well.

  205. mila59 October 5, 2010 at 6:50 pm #

    No, I actually had no idea that it sounds racist. I don’t think the horrible jobs are good for anyone. But the fact is, that illegal immigrants are doing them. Big business wants it that way for other reasons you wrote in a different post. To keep the chicken cheap! It’s so gross I can barely think about it without feeling sick to my stomach. I won’t buy any meat from one of those big companies anymore. Finally learned my lesson.
    Now, please, please don’t impugn my character in that particular way. I may be an asshole for any number of reasons, but I’m not a racist.

  206. turkle October 5, 2010 at 6:52 pm #

    You have an interesting perspective on things.
    However, I don’t believe that farm labor and the like is a major component of food costs, as it stands now (I heard this awhile back). I heard that even if wages rose like 20%, it would have only a small effect on food prices. It would be instructive to find out what percentage of food costs actually goes to the farm laborers, slaughterhouse employees, etc. I bet it is a small percentage of the total cost. I know that the fossil fuel inputs are a big part of the cost, e.g. when fossil fuel prices went up, the cost of pesticides and fertilizers soared, which caused food prices to go up. It wasn’t an increase in labor costs that caused the food crisis several years back. Oh, and this directly ties into the transportation industry (aka trucking), the overall costs of which are directly coupled to fossil fuel input costs.
    I also don’t believe for a minute that Americans don’t or won’t work as hard as immigrants. They will if they have to, but they just don’t have to right now. Citizens have protections against being abused and extorted by employers. It is a matter of, if illegal employee doesn’t do X, employer can get another one off the truck. So the employee will “work hard” just to keep his job. But you’re talking about extortion and other similar situations. I don’t think it is a fair comparison.
    Regarding other situations like restaurants and the like, which are more of a level playing field, you would be hard-pressed to back up that assertion, especially since it is so nebulous. Do you think former illegal immigrant who got amnesty starts working less hard when he becomes a citizen? (hypothetically speaking)
    So saying “immigrants work harder than Americans” is kind of a BS statement and would be difficult to backup with facts.

  207. asoka October 5, 2010 at 6:57 pm #

    “So saying “immigrants work harder than Americans” is kind of a BS statement and would be difficult to backup with facts.”
    Not difficult at all. This year United Farm Workers had a campaign called TAKE MY JOB in which they offered to give work to legal white American citizens.
    8,000 whites applied and when they found out how hard the work actually is, only 7 stayed to work.
    So, it is not a BS statement to say Americans do not want to do the work immigrants do. It’s a fact.

  208. turkle October 5, 2010 at 7:05 pm #

    Thank you for the considered response. I enjoy reading your posts on here, though I don’t always agree with you. Isn’t that what internet message boards are all about though, anyways? 🙂
    So, back on topic…
    I question your conclusion. Construction can be more physically demanding than farm work or is at about the same level, yet there are many Americans that work in this field. And there is one simple reason. The wages are adequate. The work is hard but the pay is good. So people are willing to do the work.
    On the other hand, farm labor is difficult and pays poorly. Thus, when people have other options, including government welfare, they will take it instead. An illegal immigrant, who does not have access to the safety net, will take this job, not because they are “willing to work harder”, but because they have no other choice. It is a matter or extortion, not inherent willingness to do a certain job or to work harder.

  209. networker October 5, 2010 at 7:23 pm #

    turkle, people pick on Asoka because he googles articles online and throws around statistics and generally behaves like a cheerleader on meth.
    And you’d be crazy to stock up on supermarket canned goods. Better to raise/grow your own pork and beans and learn how to can it yourself. Now THAT’s optimism and hope 🙂

  210. networker October 5, 2010 at 7:24 pm #

    TBU now tell the truth. You aren’t looking to say things with no consequences. What you really want is to create a reaction among those people who read your comments, isn’t it?

  211. turkle October 5, 2010 at 7:27 pm #

    Some cursory research indicates that the cost of farm labor is approximately 5% of the total cost of food. That’s maybe a bit low but it is ballpark. I’m going by cost of picking apples, which could be a bit low compared with other crops.
    Any-who, this figure indicates that big increases in wages to laborers, even on the order of 50%, would have only a small effect on the overall cost of food. And you bet your bottom dollar that you could get Americans to work on farms for $15+ an hour.
    Also, Americans don’t spend that much on fruits and veggies in an entire year. I think it is only around $400. So increasing that amount when compared to other household costs would amount to, um, peanuts basically. The household could probably even make up the difference by buying cheaper varieties of produce or shopping around.
    What does drive food costs is the price of gasoline, fertilizer, and pesticides. Hmmm. I sense a CFN-related theme here.

  212. asoka October 5, 2010 at 7:32 pm #

    E. said: “E. said: “The amount of jobs creation in the private sector has been ALL service sector”
    E., you claim to be a computer science teacher. Let me put this in terms you can understand:
    IF one manufacturing job has been created in the private sector first quarter 2010,
    THEN E. is lying about first quarter 2010.

  213. asoka October 5, 2010 at 7:40 pm #

    networker said: “turkle, people pick on Asoka because he googles articles online and throws around statistics and generally behaves like a cheerleader on meth. ”
    Citing GDP statistics for the first quarter of 2010, comparing GDP for 2008 and 2010, and backing it all up with a graph that is sourced… that is “throwing around statistics”?
    Thank you, networker, for supporting me on this. Let’s stay on this for a while, because it gives me the opportunity to do more cheerleading.

    Here is a graph which clearly shows the results of Republican Libertarian Tea Party economic policies of deregulation, decreased spending, and tax cuts:
    I give thanks to Obama, thanks to the economic stimulus, thanks to TARP that saved the banks, thanks to the Democrats, thanks to BIG GOVERNMENT.

  214. asoka October 5, 2010 at 7:43 pm #

    turkle said: “asoka,
    Thank you for the considered response. I enjoy reading your posts on here, though I don’t always agree with you. Isn’t that what internet message boards are all about though, anyways? :)”
    Thanks, turkle, that’s what I thought message boards are for.
    Of course it all depends on having someone to joust with… and I am happy to report I have that person now.

  215. CaptSpaulding October 5, 2010 at 7:49 pm #

    Where in my comment did I recommend apathy? Let me quote myself so you don’t have to bother going back to read it. “Often reality is not pleasant, but the only way you have a chance to change it is to recognize the problems as they exist.” I challenge you or anybody else on this blog to go back & read what I wrote & then come back & say that I’m encouraging apathy or being fatalistic. In fact, I’m talking about exactly the opposite. Recognizing the problem (the reality) so you can do something about it. In a way I should thank you, because you just demonstrated exactly what I was talking about. I wrote my comment in easy to understand English, and you interpreted it to say what you wanted it to mean. Further discourse with you is a waste of time. I do not suffer fools gladly.

  216. asoka October 5, 2010 at 7:51 pm #

    E., instead of going full bore to the vanishing point, isn’t there an option for permanent status teachers to receive a cash buyout resulting in separation from service in California?
    That way you could retire early. It would be good for you… and good for your students.

  217. lbendet October 5, 2010 at 8:00 pm #

    And now for some levity:
    Can we put burlesque back where it belongs?
    On the stage–oh and break a leg!
    Let the bread and circuses entertain you. Just another symptom of a nation that’s gone awry. In the past few weeks I’ve been commenting on our latest form political warp-outs leading to the upcoming elections and the Tea Partiers are proving to be really a hoot–but not the people I’d want to see making laws here. I can only cover a few but you’ve got the picture, folks.
    In NY State,contender for governor, Carl Paladino is one of my favorites this season, threatening the life of a reporter as he was leaving a press conference for all to see.
    — Call the casting crew, I think this guy wants a part on “Law and Order”. Just lining up his options if he doesn’t win this race.
    His ads are priceless as I’ve mentioned before, from depicting Cuomo in the shower washing off human feces from his skin to claiming he knows at least 4 affairs Cuomo had while married to Kathleen Kennedy. When asked for specifics on this claim he tries to wiggle out of producing proof on that, changing his wording each time he’s questioned.
    Today Christine O’Donnell a close second for my vote for America’s got Talent put out an ad claiming “I am not a witch”. Reminds me of Victoria Jackson’s SNL song (also a conservative) “I am not a bimbo”.
    But of course I love the mice with fully developed human brains and her claim that evolution is a hoax. If it were true one could go to the zoo and watch monkeys turn into humans. Just add water, folks and watch’em change.
    I could go on about the Sharron Angle, another piece of work who promised opponent Ashjian to leave the race with the promise of some of her special juice if she gets elected.
    Hey I’m not even going to go there.

  218. networker October 5, 2010 at 8:01 pm #

    *sigh* you might as well give it up early, Cap. I spent way too much time last night trying to talk sense into Asoka about the very same thing.

  219. asoka October 5, 2010 at 8:08 pm #

    CaptSpaulding said: “I challenge you or anybody else on this blog to go back & read what I wrote & then come back & say that I’m encouraging apathy or being fatalistic.”
    Capt, in your reply to me you said the following:
    “Reality is gonna happen and it doesn’t give a shit what you think.”
    My contention is that is fatalistic. My contention is that kind of attitude encourages apathy.
    A different non-fatalistic attitude would be: I am in control of my reactions to events, whatever they may be. That does not encourage apathy and is not fatalistic.
    I thank you for replying to me and giving me encouragement. I thank you for taking the time and giving me the opportunity to rebut your accusations.
    Here is a parable for you:
    Two people wake up, open the window and look out.
    One says apathetically, “Oh god, another day.”
    The other says enthusiastically, “Oh! God! Another day!”
    How you sleeping at night, Capt.?

  220. JD Moore October 5, 2010 at 9:45 pm #

    I saw electoral-vote.com today and it looks scary: possible 50-50 Senate, and a slim majority in the House. Not quite as bad as ’94 but enough to gum up the works. Maybe, in some twisted way, if Palin DOES get in the White House, things will screw up so bad that people will get tired of that and throw those bums out, too. But, I hate to see a lot of good people going down in the meantime. Silver lining in this is that the Democrats can play the same fill-a-buster game in the Senate that the Republicans have been playing.
    (Meanwhile, back at the ranch) Come on, America, it’s time to invest in our country! Buy those bonds, very safe and a better rate of return than you can get at the bank. You too can help keep the big banks from going under due to their own foolishness. Why worry about the national debt when you are holding part of it?

  221. networker October 5, 2010 at 9:45 pm #

    Captspaulding said,
    “Reality is gonna happen and it doesn’t give a shit what you think.”
    That is not a fatalistic statement Asoka, it is only factual. And just because you BELIEVE that Captspaulding’s “attitude” (again with your assumptions) somehow “encourages apathy” doesn’t make it true. You proved nothing. Incredible as it may seem, reality really doesn’t care what anyone thinks, (yes, even you!) no matter how much you rant and rave online. You can try to control your reactions all you want, but it doesn’t change facts. I believe you are right that it is important to be mindful of your own reactions TO those facts. But the facts themselves are not changed by it.
    Asoka, I believe you willfully misunderstand people just to hear yourself talk. You continue to read into other people’s remarks, and then slam them for your own assumptions. And why are you screaming now?
    Asoka screamed,
    Way to control your reactions Asoka. Hahaha!

  222. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 9:46 pm #

    Turkle, saying to me:
    “You have an interesting perspective on things”
    IMO, constitutes high freakin’ praise for this website. Thank you!
    I agree when you say:
    “Any-who, this figure indicates that big increases in wages to laborers, even on the order of 50%, would have only a small effect on the overall cost of food. And you bet your bottom dollar that you could get Americans to work on farms for $15+ an hour.”
    But big agri-business won’t pay $15.00 per hour when they can get illegal workers to do the work for $14.50 per hour. (with reduced benefits, less bitching/absenteeism, and almost zero chance of union organizing)
    That’s American free market capitalism working in *its* selfish best interest.

  223. asoka October 5, 2010 at 9:49 pm #

    Thanks, networker. I appreciate your response.
    I was screaming intentionally. Believe me it was the controlled reaction of a fool.

  224. ozone October 5, 2010 at 10:12 pm #

    Two… let’s make that three… people wake up, open the window and look out.
    One says apathetically, “Oh god, another day.”
    [An]other says enthusiastically, “Oh! God! Another day!”
    The third says, “What’s god got to do with it? It’s another day; time to get breakfast and get to work!”

  225. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 10:17 pm #

    I do believe that our perspectives EVEN on a site like this – are filtered by our geographical locations.
    And to tie this into JHK’s opus for the week, concerning overbuilt and overmortgaged America.
    Where I was in Atlanta, Georgia we’ve got WAY too many new and occupied houses – built cheaply using illegal immigrant labor.
    And when Turkle says:
    “I question your conclusion. Construction can be more physically demanding than farm work or is at about the same level, yet there are many Americans that work in this field. And there is one simple reason. The wages are adequate. The work is hard but the pay is good. So people are willing to do the work.”
    For metro Atlanta – ’01 thru ’07 – you are wrong. Entire huge subdivisions were concreted, framed, roofed, drywalled, sided, and landscaped by illegals. (Sometimes plumbing, electrical, and HVAC were also done in part by undocumented workers as well – usually under the license of a “legal” company owner.)
    Georgia, like most of the South, is strongly anti-union, so wages were already low, workers were unprotected – and all the illegal workers drove wages lower still.
    It may be that the influx of illegal workers is just an extension of the dear departed Ronald Reagan’s union busting efforts for big business.
    May we (of the middle class) rest in peace. 🙁

  226. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 10:25 pm #

    new and UNoccupied houses – now with many going into the various stages of foreclosure….

  227. trippticket October 5, 2010 at 10:36 pm #

    “gray water catchment and composting toilets will be key; gravity well, solar hot water system, and many other ideas rolling around.”
    Great stuff! Are you developing this retreat before retirement, or just in the planning/practicing stage, perhaps relying on sale of current house to begin in earnest?
    I’m just worried that these models – urban, suburban, and rural – need to be in place soon if we’re to make a real shot at transition. And it sounds like you could play a role in that.
    A lot of the stuff I mentioned is still in the works. Six months isn’t a ton of time, especially with a late-term wife, then a newborn, plus a two-year-old, taking their shares of it. This week I’m setting some new posts to define the growing blocks in the back garden. These will serve as seasonal foraging paddocks for the poultry, and the birds in turn will control diseases, do some light tilling/weeding, and fertilize the various plots. I’ll also be building a few gates, setting some cross-fencing in the main paddock area, seeding pasture, planting fall greens and brassicas, and starting on the central coop. Oh, and putting the last 5 meat chickens in the freezer. Always a hoot. I hate kill days.
    Check out this short interview with David Holmgren on what he thinks about the endurance of suburbia. Maybe a slightly different take than JHK, but not just wishful thinking either. My son is named after this guy’s son; that’s how much I admire him.
    Keep us posted!

  228. progressorconserve October 5, 2010 at 10:37 pm #

    Couple of points:
    Saying that something you say *sounds* racist is not the same thing as saying it is racist.
    At any rate, it should not be considered to impugn your character.
    “Now, please, please don’t impugn my character in that particular way. I may be an asshole for any number of reasons, but I’m not a racist.”
    Some humans of wonderful, sterling character -Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Albert Schweitzer – were racist, in the modern conventional use of the term.
    We are all a product of our times.

  229. Dennis October 5, 2010 at 11:15 pm #

    Decent article, Jim. And I know just where you’re talking about, as I used to live just north of Seattle in Mill Creek. But who cares?
    What astonishes me, is that the MSM all keep speaking in vague terms about ‘incomplete paperwork’. Uhhh…Hardly. It’s so much worse than you’re actually portraying!
    During the uber-malfeasance of the banks back in the day, they started bundling up CDOs, or collatoralized debt obligations. Bundling bits and pieces of this mortgage and that as a ‘newly created’ Frankenstein mish-mosh of investments, sold to one party, to the next, and to the next. Selling paper, with no value whatsoever, and on and on it went.
    Last year, in a court case, one gentleman refused to accept the bank’s decision to foreclose on him UNTIL that bank procured the deed to the property. Well guess what? They’ve never been asked that before, and NO ONE BANK now owns the deed to these properties! No deed, no foreclosure. The courts saw it his way!
    This in turn, set up a WAVE of homeowners demanding to see their deeds first. Banks can’t do it! They’ve been sliced and diced into thousands of pieces!
    So, imagine where this leaves us today if no bank can procure the deeds to these properties, and homeowners are hip to the law!
    Good times, people. Good times! And you think the mainstream doesn’t know this? Incomplete paperwork my foot!

  230. treebeardsuncle October 5, 2010 at 11:17 pm #

    So there are too many people consuming too much and with biases of individualism, lack of foresight, and values of convience, efficiency, and profit, the psychology is played out upon the geography as you have seen it. A crash is not coming though, just more cancerous metastasis and subsequent decay.

  231. thrill October 5, 2010 at 11:29 pm #

    Four people wake up and look out the window. The first 3 say what y’all wrote already, the 4th one goes back to bed muttering that he’s out of smokes and wishes the goddamned unemployment check would hurry up and get here. Then Asoka posts another comment solely for the purpose of getting somebody to argue with.

  232. Dennis October 5, 2010 at 11:44 pm #

    No. A crash is coming. Buckle up. This is not a quiet, meandering malaise. This is not even the Japan of the past two decades. I’m not here to get political, but depending on what sources of media you follow, you may be told that we’re ‘slowing climbing out of this’. Nothing could be further from the truth. We are on the precipice.
    Three examples of why. Just three:
    1. The media will speak of ‘jobs gained this month for the ______ month in a row. They will tell you the 10,000 or so jobs we picked up, but not the other 390,000 or so that we lost. Net jobs: -380,000. Don’t you think that’s an important part of the equation? This is why people are in the dark, and continue to speak of recovery. Anything less than full reporting of such numbers if spin and deceit.
    2. Pre3cious metals are going through the roof. Not a bubble. People are losing faith in the currency (as is the world), and government itself. And before this week is done, banks that have been selling gold and silver ETFs (or, paper gold and silver) are about to have to make good on physical delivery, as so MANY people are now calling for possession of their metals, currently in certificate form. Problem is, they’ve been selling the paper at 100:1 as compared to the actual physical they have! That means, very soon, starting this week, ‘someone’ is going to have to pay out on this. And in the end, 99 out of 100 people are NOT going to get their metals! How do you think that will go over with investors? It’s called a short squeeze, and today’s silver and gold performances suggest its already under way!
    3. For anyone that thinks the stock market is actually going up, as has been so heavily touted on news reports, it is a clear indication of how close to this cliff we’re getting. Not just the ‘greatest stock increases in 70 years’ and all that nonsense. You must know, the Fed is buying US treasuries (our own debt) from the banks with the agreement that those same banks put the money into the stock market! Up to 10 billion a week is being pumped into this market by our government. The average investor has long since gone! Want proof? Just the other day, 10 billion pumped into only a handful of S&P companies, and nothing else! All money went into Apple, Netflix, and Amazon to name a few. That will tell you, this system is about to crash. The games are spinning out of control.
    If you deny this, you haven’t looked into it at all, and you’re letting partisanship blind you. No malaise. Crash.
    BTW, just before the crash of ’29 that set off the Depression, we were told all was good, and the recovery has begun. Pay attention to such history. Do not ignore it. Prepare yourself now, and you’ll ‘be there’ to help your family and friends very soon when they need it.

  233. pes October 5, 2010 at 11:59 pm #

    Roger, go at throttle up.

  234. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 12:10 am #

    Well, there are some who would like to see America remain a Christian white/European establishment. Blacks, Latinos, muslims whether Arab or Persian etc, should make their exits.

  235. asoka October 6, 2010 at 1:01 am #

    Dennis said: “We are on the precipice.”
    Dennis, this blog has been saying we are on the precipice for at least the last five years. Actually, we were on the precipice before Y2K so I’d say we’ve been on the precipice for 10 years. We can be on the precipice for a long time more, and yes, Japan is a model we might follow. And there is no Mad Max scenario happening in Japan.

  236. BeantownBill October 6, 2010 at 1:07 am #

    I don’t care whether the USA survives as an intact country. If it goes down, I’d be nervous because of the uncertainty of the future, but I’d get over it. What I do care about is that we maintain our liberty and civil rights, and keep advancing technologically.
    If the S does HTF, spoiled Americans are not going to handle it very well. I’d be afraid the people would look for an authoritative leader who declares he has all the answers and who promises security.
    I do own some precious metals, myself, but I’m not confident in their viability in very bad times. I have them as a hedge in case I’m wrong; they give me another option, but they don’t constitute a high percentage of my assets.
    In olden times, money was just a shortcut for bartering. Money occurred when a society started to go beyond local. If we have a TLE or SHTF situation, our lives will revert to being much more local. You can’t eat gold or silver, you can’t wear them as protection or use them to maintain your hygiene. I believe stocking up on essential goods is the wisest decision. People will always need soap, booze, cigarettes, canned food, toilet paper, etc., and these will always be traded for something else you may need.
    I know one cannot stock up enough on these materials to last a long time, but in a collapse scenario, they may last long enough to get you through the shock of entering the bad times. After that, you will have to produce most of your necessities yourself, or produce something tradeable. Or trade your labor for basics.
    Of course, being overrun by mad hordes of pillagers or starving people would make this whole scenario moot.

  237. BeantownBill October 6, 2010 at 1:16 am #

    And whether people like it or not, with technology shrinking the world, the concept of nationalism will fade away, and people of all races, cultures and beliefs will co-mingle most everywhere. Ultimately, humanity may be mostly raceless, with golden-skinned people. Except for occasional expressions of recessive genes, there will be no white, black, yellow, red, brown differentation. Take that, you rascist pigs who are out there now.
    No americans, Canadians, Kenyans, Chinese, just people. Wou;dn’t that be something?

  238. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 1:16 am #

    What skills are useful and useless?

  239. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 1:37 am #

    Sounds like there has been a lot of innovation over the last 140 years which is quite a short period of time. Also when in pre-school back in 75-76 I remember seeing a man servicing the circuits of a rotary dial phone. Now folks use cell phones. There has been a huge amount of innovation. No, you are not screwed. You folks got it easy. Quit your whining.

  240. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 1:43 am #

    The priorities in real estate are to keep the places glized up on the surface and over-leveraged in order to maximize resale values. Such marks of distinction as growing one’s own veggies interfere with the sterilization and homegenization of the surface of the planet which is used to render it an subdivided collection of ersatz entities for real estate speculation.

  241. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 2:14 am #

    Well, are you in a rural or suburban area? Sounds like there could be problems with zoning, cc&r, rules, regulations, etc.

  242. Eleuthero October 6, 2010 at 3:38 am #

    Poor Asoka. He feels the need to respond
    to a short post directed at him with FIVE
    responses. I guess you have an inferiority
    complex if the weight of your words is so
    small that you have to repeat yourself N
    Listen, junior, you and TBU can pretend that
    this is a normal postwar recovery and that
    Obama, Heli-Ben, and Timmy Boy are really
    doing shit to save our asses, okay? Just
    don’t come bitching when the obvious happens
    i.e., Treasury bonds yield 15% in the second
    half of the decade (already baked into the
    cake), when the dollar’s decline does NOT
    lead to an export boom, when Obama proves
    beyond a shadow of a doubt to be a dictator.
    A look at the car industry shows you what
    a joke it is to have Uncle Sam running it.
    Hyundai came up with an electric car with
    a 100 mile range at $30K while the Chevy
    Volt has less than a 40 mile range and costs
    $41K. Unless one is goofy, what do you think
    the prospects are for that Chevy vs. the
    Is he doing any better running the banks?
    I’ve not heard ONE whimper out of him about
    the FASB allowing banks to value their assets
    HOWEVER THEY WISH in contradiction to GAAP
    accounting that EVERYBODY else has to follow.
    Now he wants to strong-arm the community
    colleges in the country. Got announced today.
    You’re brown-skinned hero is a freaking
    surreptitious dictator who is losing all
    of the people on his econ team who actually
    think, correctly, that QE2 and more stimulus
    is WRONG.
    The groundwork your man-boy is laying is the
    final seeds of America’s destruction. Note,
    also, that he’s only TWEAKING the two wars
    which is why he kept Bush’s Defence Secretary.
    You just don’t get it. Obama is “Bush-Lite”
    with better diction. There’s not a dime’s
    worth of difference in econ policy (he DID
    keep Heli-Ben), military policy, or social
    policy except he seems to think he can run
    whole private sector industries. Even Dubya
    wasn’t that stupid.

  243. Eleuthero October 6, 2010 at 3:51 am #

    You just don’t see that we’ve ALREADY
    a weatherman who forecasts sun and who
    refuses to stick his ass out the window
    because it might get wet and embarrass
    We’ve fallen off, dude. We’re not “at”
    the precipice. Instead of $300/$400 billion
    annual Federal deficits, even Obama’s men
    are saying that trillion-plus deficits are
    baked in through 2012. Any forecast beyond
    that is, of course, ridiculous.
    The “true” U6 unemployment rate remains in
    the high teens and even U6 is a dishonest
    number. If you work 10 hours a week you
    are “employed” but you should be counted
    as one-quarter employed. Wages are dropping
    because service sector jobs don’t pay as well
    as engineering and manufacturing.
    The private sector is adding a modest amount
    of jobs but the government is now LOSING jobs.
    How can that be when Obama was going to be
    the next FDR and make a CCC, WPA, and TVA??
    Net household debt is stagnant at crippling
    levels. Municipal, state, county, and Federal
    debts are climbing hyperbolically.
    What do you mean that we’re always saying we’re
    “on the precipice”? You’re like a guy watching
    his TV in the living room and a tornado blows
    the other half of the house down but as long
    as it doesn’t blow up the room where he’s
    watching the TV, it doesn’t count. It’s
    You just don’t have much respect for numbers.
    So if you’re going to make fun of the “precipice”
    people, I’m going to make light of you “green
    shoots” people who think that 450,000+ weekly
    jobless claims is a “recovery” and that deficits
    need not be discussed. Really, A., are you an
    Obama man or a redressed Cheney man??

  244. Eleuthero October 6, 2010 at 6:20 am #

    If Jim has any illusions they consist of
    the idea that Europe or any other place
    is free of the Dark Ages corruptions he
    At the risk of sounding anthropocentric,
    you know it’s a Dark Age when China, the
    most mad-dog mercantilist, sell-at-any-
    human-cost nation becomes the new world
    economic hegemon. It’s dark humor to the
    point of pitch black … which is the color
    of the water in many parts of the Yellow
    River (which doesn’t make it to the sea
    any more) and the Yangtze.
    China is the new, “hip” hegemon … just
    ask Jimmy Rogers who wants his kids to
    learn Mandarin. I guess he doesn’t care
    if they catch pneumonia twice a year or if
    the crops are grown with black water because
    China has a critical freshwater problem which
    all their Treasury Bonds cannot cure.
    Europe has chosen austerity. Its population
    doesn’t like it. Yet that’s a sign of real
    leadership because austerity is the ONLY cure
    for decades of excess and corruption. The
    question is, can even Europe’s governments
    have the bravery to hold the line against
    the unions that think they should still be
    able to retire at 56 with huge pensions.
    I seriously doubt that Europe’s attempt to
    do the right thing will succeed. AT least
    they’re giving it a go which is more than
    I can say about my own nation whose citizens
    and governments have lived piggishly for the
    last forty years and haven’t a farthing of

  245. trippticket October 6, 2010 at 9:06 am #

    I’ve seen a lot of mumbling lately about how relocalization and horticultural systems just aren’t going to solve our problems, and I have a couple of things to say in response.
    One, relocalization isn’t a strategy per se. It’s just where we’re headed. As gasoline gets more expensive, roads deteriorate from a lack of regular maintenance, and well-traveled consumables get harder to come by, relocalization will just take over organically. Those who get this are getting ahead. They will be the ones to thrive ahead of schedule in a new economy.
    Two, the critics are correct in their charge that establishing personal food, water, and energy systems is more expensive energetically than streamlined centralized industrial production systems. But these high-tech systems are not accounting for environmental and health impacts that Mother Nature won’t let slide forever. Also, a lot of energy was being used for destructive endeavors during our expansionary phase. If it can instead be used to establish intelligent, self-perpetuating systems for local users, it’s like a double bonus. Use the energy not for environmental destruction, which will just cost more later to ameliorate (if we even get that chance), but for future energy/water savings in low-tech local systems.
    I have absolutely no qualms about using petroleum and its amazing array of products to build a system around me that can later be run solely on human muscle power in perpetuity. That’s one of the caveats of permaculture. Although some permies are less OK with it than others. [Notice that “human muscle power” wouldn’t include air conditioning, refrigeration, or automatic clothes washers.] I buy fence posts from the fence company at the same time I plant trees for the next round of fence posts, whether on my property or in reafforestation projects. I buy 2x4s and plywood while I plant timber bamboo for later. Make sense? Invest the remaining energy procreatively now and smooth out the descent.
    This idea that high-input garden development is unsustainable is based on a false dichotomy. Yes, it’s probably more energy-intensive in sum than an efficient centralized system, but this assumes that the latter will be a viable option in the future. The people who are spending the energy now to build these local systems will be ready when the industrial model goes kaput. And hopefully they will have gained the expertise, (and cultural attitudes WILL change), so that they can show others how to do it without access to the Home Depot, Breck’s, and McMurray. There’s a built-in understanding that things will get a lot leaner, and many may not make it, but playing the real-world role of Noah is probably the most valuable thing anyone could be doing right now. IMO.
    Now, in reference to the protest that most people just don’t WANT to farm and garden, that they like their non-production specialties and would like to continue with those pursuits, I say…tough titty? It’s true that most permaculturalists LOVE growing food. Most people come to the discipline through a love of gardening. But there’s a hidden agenda in the permaculture way, and that is that we don’t want to spend all of our time growing food. That’s why we are spending so much time and energy creating human ecosystems instead of intensive, fossil-fuel-reliant annual veggie gardens. After a few years my most useful tools should transition from shovel and watering can to peck basket and pruners. (You should see how much my soil has improved in 6 months!!) Most established permaculture systems are so prolific that cutting back the most successful species is the biggest chore in the garden.
    But this idea that 2% of our population can grow the food for everyone, while the masses spend a mere 9% of their income on food, is comical. It requires enormous energy subsidies to pull that off. Look, it was a stolen season. If you don’t like growing food you better make friends with a top-notch producer at your earliest convenience, and familiarize yourself with something truly amazing to use for barter. And most of the “jobs” today just won’t qualify.
    Potter? Brewer? Smithie? Baker? You’ll probably do fine. But banker? Stock trader? Middle management? Attorney? Might want to pick up a more useful hobby…
    Again, in my opinion.

  246. mila59 October 6, 2010 at 9:09 am #

    Well, we’re developing the retreat for early retirement if we can possibly extricate ourselves from the city. We can’t have chickens here (yet!) 🙁
    But we’re planning, planning, figuring — the way I suppose many folks do here at CFN — buying old-fashioned hand tools here and there, studying different systems and designs for living close to the earth…yes, relying on sale of current house (tell Freedom Guerrilla it’s paid for!)…if things hold together that long…we’d like to position in Vermont. Bill McKibben says the soil there in the Green Mountains is some of the most fertile in the world because of the calcium content among other things. But as I mentioned, we’re lucky to have a back-up plan in family already entrenched in the Maine countryside with those systems already working. Just in case.
    You and others here who are already DOING these things are an inspiration!

  247. mila59 October 6, 2010 at 9:18 am #

    Watched the video. He’s nice to watch and listen to…very calm and collected and knowledgeable…I hope his vision of suburbia comes true! It sounds idyllic.

  248. mila59 October 6, 2010 at 9:21 am #

    Hee hee. I like your comments. Sounds right to me.

  249. The Mook October 6, 2010 at 11:04 am #

    First post I have seen on here that I absolutely 100% agree with as far as the economy is concerned. I have been acquiring gold and putting all my IRA contributions into money market funds but also believe that that is doomed also, due to the fact that hyper-inflation will wipe its value out eventually. Buy, and enjoy, now.

  250. Cash October 6, 2010 at 11:16 am #

    Firstly I’m not American, I’m a native born Canuck.
    Anyway here’s where I’m coming from: I do not believe for one microsecond that it’s beyond the capacity of Mexicans or Latinos to fix the problems that ail Mexico or Latin America in general. They have more than enough intellectual horsepower to do the job.
    OK maybe I’m reading stuff (Asoka style) into what a lot of people say about Mexicans/Latinos. But the subtext seems to be that, gee, we northerners have to give the poor, helpless Latinos/Indigenous people a break. Why? Because they can’t be expected to do for themselves what we superior northerners did for ourselves, that it’s beyond them.
    Maybe I’m seeing racism or bigotry where there isn’t any. And trust me I’m no holier than thou, bleeding heart liberal. And I’m not accusing you of being a racist.
    Here’s what I think: that people south of the Rio Grande have a long heritage of phenomenal civilizational accomplishment, both through their Indian forebears and through their Spanish forebears.
    Look at what the Inca/Maya/Aztecs and others built. Their cities, their art and architecture are mind blowing. Just think that their distant forebears, only a few hundred Mongoloid nomads according to some studies, somehow got across from Asia during the worst climatic conditions you can imagine ie the freaking ice age no less, and populated two continents. New World people were not and are not helpless idiots. Their Spanish forebears were every bit as brilliant. Wooden Spanish ships sailed the world. In short, Mexicans/Latinos are descended from people with balls of steel.
    I had an argument with an aquaintance at work a while back. He said that we in Canada are enormously privileged. I replied that we are not, that we earn what we have every single day. All it would take to turn this place into an Argentine style financial and economic shambles is for us to start behaving like Argentines, to adopt their attitudes and practices. Actually, IMO, this is the course we’re on. Same with you guys.
    And how did my parents get into Canada? Legally with a passport. They were just as badly off as modern day Mexicans if not worse.

  251. Cash October 6, 2010 at 11:34 am #

    Bean, I agree about the co-mingling. You see it happening now. I’m white, my wife is Chinese and you see all the time, in this place at least, people of different races hooking up, marrying and having kids. I always thought inbreeding was a bad thing. I think that for the biological health of the species that this co-mingling is a good thing. Anyway, lust conquers all in the end regardless of societal attitudes.
    I agree also about present day national boundaries breaking down. You see it now with migrations across the Rio Grande and across Europe from the middle east and other places.
    Thing is, what takes the place of national boundaries? IMO, something will. Will nation states reconfigure themselves with new nationalities and boundaries? Or will it be the Dark Age Europe model where people withdraw into hilltop forts with local warlords extracting tax and providing “security” and “law and order”.

  252. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 11:42 am #

    Well, that is the mechanism whereby folks get richer by acquiring resources through debt financing and then liquididating them for a profit.

  253. Dr.Pangloss October 6, 2010 at 11:46 am #

    Good morning all, a quick note as I’m taking a close friend to the hospital for his cancer treatment.
    Eleuthero, Dennis and Trippticket….you are SO right on with your thinking. Excellent posts. People, please take the time to reread their last few posts.
    The Economic Collapse/Depression that they describe is coming, IMHO, and will take your breath away. We have been living way beyond our means for decades. Please open your eyes and start preparing. We also should thank Mr. Kunstler. He is like the honest prophet who has been crying in the wilderness for years….and almost no one listens.
    Please take this time to prepare yourselves and your family and your ‘tribe’ (not even a family can do this alone) as much as you can, mentally, physically, spiritually. Learn the skills, secure a safe source of water, learn to grow and store food, save seeds, plant an orchard, get your gardens fenced and fertile.
    Build your community. You will have many to care for who didn’t prepare. Secure your energy source. Have a small, secure home. Perhaps add a dog and, as difficult as it may be, learn to defend your self and your family if needed.
    Finally, thank you to Mila 59 and San Jose Mom for your kind words and encouragement (and recipe). Best wishes, Dr.Pangloss

  254. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 12:03 pm #

    Well, that was the goal of free trade, bringing in east Asians with H1V visas etc.

  255. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 12:12 pm #

    What is wrong with racism? It is obvious those people from down south have never created effective successful societies compared to those in Europe and the Middle East and East Asia. Opening up the country to be inundated by hordes of criminal morons and low-lifes only brings down the tenor of society. Looking to pay the lowest possible wages though is a big problem that is driving the replacement of the remaining white working class with Mexicans.

  256. envirofrigginmental October 6, 2010 at 3:23 pm #

    I recommend reading “The End of Food” by Thomas Pawlick. LOTS of fodder there.

  257. envirofrigginmental October 6, 2010 at 3:33 pm #

    I just finished designing and building our retirement “green” house and have a lot to say about the process, the systems, the dreams and the realities… if anyone’s interested.

  258. envirofrigginmental October 6, 2010 at 4:16 pm #

    Well, there are some who would like to see America remain a Christian white/European establishment.

    I’d like to make a clarification here on a word that gets thrown around too loosely: “American”.
    To those of you in the US who use it to describe (just) yourselves, may I remind you that you do not own that word.
    We have three America’s on this planet: North, Central and South America. Within the North, we have three distinct countries, Canada, The United States of America and Mexico. Within the South there are 12 distinct countries.
    We are ALL American, but one would hardly say we are the same. There are over 572 million AMERICAN people (not including the US population of 310 million) living in THE AMERICA’S.
    So it’s neaderathal comments like these that reinforce the “arrogant American” stereotype that I for one, as a Canadian American, don’t appreciate being lumped in with.

  259. mila59 October 6, 2010 at 4:32 pm #

    Very interested in hearing about it. I’ll check in here in the morning to see if you say anything more about it…

  260. mila59 October 6, 2010 at 4:33 pm #

    P.S. Don’t take TBU seriously. I’m sure he writes some of this stuff just to get a strong reaction…

  261. envirofrigginmental October 6, 2010 at 4:46 pm #

    learn to defend your self and your family if needed

    This statement, will be the determinant in how things actually go for those who are “prepared”.
    I suspect the “unprepared” masses, whose moral compasses were abandonned back in the 80’s along with their offspring who don’t even know what a compass is, will, when the SHTF, be more than happy to take your veggie garden, chickens and self-sustaining home away from you with their “right to bear arms”.
    In a fight between JHK’s NASCAR knuckle draggers and the hipster survivalists, who do you think’s gonna win?
    And we think the streets are mean now.

  262. envirofrigginmental October 6, 2010 at 4:49 pm #

    Too long to get into here. I have a blog site (rarely used… free to a good home 😉 ) that I can post to. I’ll let you know when I have something posted.

  263. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 6:02 pm #

    Why would you say that, you withered old hag?
    Now, get back to those fiber optic lines!

  264. trippticket October 6, 2010 at 6:25 pm #

    “In a fight between JHK’s NASCAR knuckle draggers and the hipster survivalists, who do you think’s gonna win?”
    Why are we hipsters?
    For that matter, why are we “survivalists”?
    I don’t think of myself as either.
    Or were you talking about some other opposite of NASCAR knuckle draggers?

  265. asoka October 6, 2010 at 6:53 pm #

    E. said: “Stop “throwing” statistics at this site without comparing your numbers to historical benchmarks. As usual, you just look like a cheerleader on meth.”
    E. said: “You just don’t see that we’ve ALREADY
    So, you want historical benchmarks? You think we’ve already fallen off the precipice?
    You asked for it:
    The record for the decline in US industrial production was the 54% decline from July 1929 to July 1932 during the Great Depression. Through May 2009 we were only 15% below the previous peak in December 2007, slightly worse than the minus 13% recorded in March 1975.
    E., things have gotten better since 2009, as the link to the graph on 2009 and 2010 increases in GDP illustrates.
    Between 1929 and 1933 real GDP in the United States fell almost 27%. Reality: GDP has not fallen off the precipice in 2008-2010. Reality: GDP is increasing in 2010, not decreasing. Reality: Up, not down. Reality: Better, not worse.
    As Capt. Spaulding and networker say, you ignore reality at your own risk. Reality will pick you up and slap you up the side of the head. Reality doesn’t care what you imagine about precipices.
    How in the world can you say (with a straight face) that we have already fallen off the precipice, when the numbers clearly indicate otherwise?
    If we had fallen off the precipice, you would be spending hours in line to get your gas tank filled (if you could find a gas station open for business).
    If we had fallen off the precipice, you would have been forced out of your job, forced into early retirement, due to no budget. I was in California recently. They haven’t even shut down the I-5 rest areas! Some budget crisis.
    Your rhetoric and your hyperbole is not supported by REALITY.
    Be careful E. about demanding historical benchmarks. They don’t come out in your favor.
    SOURCE: NationalJournal.com

  266. San Jose Mom 51 October 6, 2010 at 7:14 pm #

    I’m the antithesis of a NASCAR enthusiast — but I have a shotgun hidden in the attic (my teenagers know nothing of its existence).

  267. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 7:21 pm #

    I have a lot of stock in Apple, Netflix, and Baidu some am in the right places. I had a lot of stock in FCX, Freeport McMorran Copper and Gold too, and they have gone up to $93/share from around $80/share or so just a month ago. I think I will go back into them. Thanks for the tips I can use.

  268. treebeardsuncle October 6, 2010 at 7:38 pm #

    Yep. You nailed it. It is fun too to see humourless libtards hunt around for racist epithets to pounce upon on and knaw on like junkyard dogs. Then they recite their libtard platforms like catechisms.

  269. trippticket October 6, 2010 at 8:01 pm #

    Jesus, what happened to you, man? At one time you were contributing to the discussion, and now you’ve just become another miserable antagonist. As if this site needed more.
    Come back from the precipice, Treebeard! The darkness you see this way is just soil humus! We’re the good guys!

  270. trippticket October 6, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    “It is fun too to see humourless libtards hunt around for racist epithets to pounce upon[.]”
    Hunt around? All you have to do is look for ‘Vlad Krandz’ or ‘Treebeardsuncle’. Chances are pretty decent racism is right around the corner from there.

  271. trippticket October 6, 2010 at 8:13 pm #

    On a more interesting note (to me anyway), I was asked to drive a hundred miles to do a 20 minute presentation on chicken tractors at a big “Growing Local” weekend workshop in early November.
    I used to have a cubicle and billable hours. Now I’m doing a talk on chicken tractors. Strikes me as unreasonable how much I prefer the latter.

  272. turkle October 6, 2010 at 8:34 pm #

    You mad?

  273. turkle October 6, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

    treebeardsuncle is a confirmed fucktard.

  274. turkle October 6, 2010 at 8:42 pm #

    And BTW no one fucking cares what stocks you own. Bye now.

  275. BeantownBill October 6, 2010 at 8:59 pm #

    The only way to relieve your agita over some posters is to totally ignore them.
    Does anybody know about aeroponics? I’ve read up a little on the subject, and it seems to have a lot of potential. Pros and cons?

  276. BeantownBill October 6, 2010 at 9:06 pm #

    A shotgun might stop the 1st wave of a bunch of marauders, but I think that’s about it. Now, if only one or two people invade your home, well, they may end up very sorry.

  277. BeantownBill October 6, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

    Nope, not unreasonable. Do what you love and love what you do.

  278. asoka October 6, 2010 at 9:20 pm #

    Tripp said:

    You should see how much my soil has improved in 6 months!!) Most established permaculture systems are so prolific that cutting back the most successful species is the biggest chore in the garden.

    Tripp, have you had any experience (or know of projects) with rebuilding soil in desert areas like Arizona, New Mexico? Do you need a garden hose to use for watering, or can permaculture be done without an external (city or well-supplied) water source?

  279. asia October 6, 2010 at 9:38 pm #

    reading material:
    They Must Be Stopped: Why We Must Defeat Radical Islam and How We Can Do It (Hardcover)
    This is a most fabulous book. Mrs. Gabriel convincingly shows that purist Islam is a real threat to Western civilization and that it must be stopped. She explains Islamic identity, how Islam sees the West, and what the problem is. She shows that we do not face a fringe of “evil doers” who have hijacked a peaceful religion — rather we face purists who have ‘cleansed’ their religion the outside environment and are trying to do what the Koran says– “purists who drink their Islam straight”. She points out that the claim “Islam is a religion of peace” … well, Nazism and Communism were ideologies that said they wanted world peace. Islam could be called a religion of peace, but so because muslims have a different understanding of the word peace from Western secularists. The book shows that Islam is a religion of conquest, i.e., it is political in ways other religions are not. The book shows how many ‘moderate’ muslims want to take over the West and the World through non-violent means if possible (education, propaganda, receiving concessions, etc.) and want to reestablish the caliphate (empire) under shariah [Islamic law]– think about Western Europe as a new huge Saudi arabia (in laws, customs, etc.)The book then shows how women and minorities are treated in ways they may not like under Islam, and how muslims use multiculturalism, diversity, and sensitivity to make the West become islamicized. She has a chapter about how Europe is being islamified, and points out that the West had better wake up before it is too late.
    Mrs. Gabriel correctly points out the the Political correctness is a real threat to the West’s survival, and explains how we can stop the cultural jihad waged against us.

  280. messianicdruid October 6, 2010 at 9:44 pm #

    “Now he wants to strong-arm the community
    colleges in the country.”
    Not only the colleges:
    “Insurance is about risk, and already sick children are 100 percent certain to be sick when their coverage begins. So if the government mandates that insurance companies cover sick children at the lower well-children price, insurers will quit the market rather than sandbag their shareholders. This is not callousness — it’s fiduciary responsibility. Insurance companies are not charities. So, thanks to the compassionate Congress and president, parents of sick children will be saved from expensive insurance — by being unable to obtain any insurance! That’s how government compassion works. In 2014, the same rule will kick in for adults. You now know what to expect.”
    Get healthy, you will be on your own.
    “In a letter to the trade group America’s Health Insurance Plans, Sebelius wrote there would be “zero tolerance” for companies that attribute “unjustified rate increases” to Obamacare. “Simply stated,” she wrote, “we will not stand idly by as insurers blame their premium hikes and increased profits on the requirement that they provide consumers with basic protections.”
    IOW: “We have repealed the basic laws of economics. Insurance companies must now give people more but not charge them for it. If you do charge more, you must not tell your customers why. Shut up, obey, and don’t complain. We are your rulers.”
    The tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.

  281. rippedthunder October 6, 2010 at 10:21 pm #

    Your welcome to come out to the berkshires anytime. They are pretty much the same as Union Grove which JHK writes about. lots of forest, wildlife, and good soil. As far as the poo-poo stuff goes. I say if it’s brown flush it down. if it’s yellow let it mellow. we are fortunate to have vast quantities of gravity supplied water from the berkshires. No pumps needed. I don’t really consider water conservation as important in our area. I feel for people who are not so fortunate. Perhaps our situatiuon will turn with climate change. I won’t see it.I still do my best to live a clean and organic lifestyle. I only need to go about 1.5 miles to work and I will bike it if not raining or less then 40 degrees. Peace.

  282. rippedthunder October 6, 2010 at 10:41 pm #

    Hey Sj Mom, keep your powder dry and u might want that shotgun a little more easy to get at than in the attic. Not to far from here there was a horrific crime. I am sure u have seen it on the Nightly news . http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504083_162-20018426-504083.html They should hang these bastards from the trees like Bullock did to the home invaders in the “Witch of Hebron” If it was up to me “I WOULD BURN THEM AT THE STAKE IN CENTRAL PARK” call me a savage but that is what they are.

  283. rippedthunder October 6, 2010 at 10:52 pm #

    Ok I am really off the wall pissed now. If I could I would take these two low lifes and beat their brains out with a Louisville slugger Mickey Mantle 34 inch white ash bat. I volunteer, give me the short straw. The more I read about these scum bags the more pissed I get. What the F*** is wrong with people today?

  284. San Jose Mom 51 October 6, 2010 at 11:00 pm #

    There’s nothing about my house that screams “rip me off.” (I do have the most outstanding hedges, ha, ha.)
    I do have a lovely, blonde teenage daughter that attracts a lot of attention. I imagine that our neighborhood would band together and work out protection shifts. I know several people on the street that have guns. One I trust, the other was leering at my daughter last week.

  285. rippedthunder October 6, 2010 at 11:22 pm #

    Be Wary, Be very wary, of men looking at your daughters. I know when my buds and I( All old men), like 50 plus,get together we can be very crude with comments about younger woman . I am not proud of it. That is what old farts do. These are just rude comments though. I would destroy someone who victimized another person. some people have no conscious however and are nothing but sociopath’s. There are far more around than you realize. Please be careful.

  286. rippedthunder October 6, 2010 at 11:34 pm #

    Hey SJ Mom , Can you send me a picture of your daughter? that is a bad joke, sorry. please be vigilant. like I said before. The world is filled with crazies. I have a beautiful daughter of my own and if anyone even so much as messed with her They would be extremely sorry. I am 6’3″ and 225 lbs made of steel and armed. No Brag ,Just fact! Walter Brennan Classic http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9j1qkorFszY

  287. jackieblue2u October 7, 2010 at 12:51 am #

    Turkle wrote:
    “Who the fuck are you to say who can and can’t come here, especially since these migrants aren’t doing you any bodily harm and are mostly coming here to find jobs? These are not rampaging barbarian hordes.”
    hmmmm…..ever been to Salinas or Watsonville CA ?
    Or seen the news ?
    They ARE barbarians. more and more. But I guess percentage wise, I’d say 30% and growing exponentially. I don’t know what we can do about the gang problem. Or even
    From my own personal experience in CA for 50+ years I can say it is many more times dangerous here in CA due to hispanic gangs, than ever in my lifetime and getting worse and worse. It’s very bad.
    Too many of them ARE here doing serious violent damage to too many innocent people just because they are ‘white’, I feel predudice towards ME from the latina girls like NEVER before. And very unsafe in general.
    Keeping ‘all’ of them out probably isn’t the answer, don’t know what is. Wish they weren’t so violent.
    I was born here, am ‘white’. Don’t feel ‘special’ because of that, just angry about what’s going on.
    Some of my best friends are Mexicans’.
    Shit (women swear also) I learned from them that there is a war going on between Mexicans born here and the ones’ that make it over here, not to mention the Whites that ‘took’ it all from them, or back from them or who the fuck cares anymore, they LIKE TO KILL AND THEY DO. They are angry people in general. NO RESPECT FOR LIFE.
    We definitely have a gang problem.
    Maybe you live in an area where this isn’t happening. you’d be lucky.
    I’ve noticed alot of people pick on asoka. just an observation. A few of you guys seem to LOVE picking on eachother.
    I just gleen what I can to try to understand things.
    I am adjusting my sails. That IS about all you can really do. Do your best to stay out of harms way.
    I watched Charles Bronson movies today…..if only it were that easy. There ARE some really SICK VIOLENT gangsters that are doing not one any good. It’s like we are devolving. Well not all of us.
    I probably shouldn’t write stuff like this. But I just get sick of living in fear of taking a walk at night. I just had an experience with “one.” just before writing this.

  288. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 1:22 am #

    Look at history. This is nothing new.

  289. k-dog October 7, 2010 at 1:23 am #

    I saw James last night on his book tour.
    BoughtThe Witch of Hebronat the Elliot Bay Bookstore and read it in two sittings last night and this morning finishing shortly after noon today about ten hours ago.
    The book is really really good as evidenced by me finishing in less than a day. I generally take a little bit longer to read a book.
    I highly recommend reading this book.
    What follows is me pretending to be a book critic without giving anything in the book away.
    Introducing a few psychic suggesters into the speculative framework of the plot is brilliant. It brings the characters into sharp focus. The technique softens the details of the speculative future allowing strong character development.
    Details of a ‘world made by hand’ front and center would have made a bad book. They can only be guessed at and then argued about. Kunstler knows this and concentrates on his characters. Kunstler gives exactly the right amount of detail about what the changed world looks like.
    The book is about the future of humanity not about whether or not a falling K-mart sign breaks into 5 pieces or fifty when it falls. The final outcome is hopeful, the best of humanity survives all future calamities. The reader is left content in knowing that life goes on.
    The book has left me feeling that beauty and love will not die if we can figure out how to feed ourselves and stay warm.
    That’s what I think and I’m sticking to it.

  290. asoka October 7, 2010 at 1:24 am #

    Since 56% of the legal and 90% of the illegal immigrant population [in California] is Hispanic, an immigrant crime wave should manifest itself in burgeoning arrests and imprisonments among Hispanics centered in the high-immigration young-adult ages.
    We used California Criminal Justice Statistics Center data to analyze trends in population-adjusted arrest rates by race (Latino vs. White), age, and crime (all felonies, violent offenses, and drug offenses) for three time periods (2008 vs. 1980, 1990, and 2000) (see table at end).
    Our conclusions were stunning. Even amid rapid increases in immigration (and even without factoring in the growth in illegal immigrant populations), Latinos still show considerably less growth in arrest over time (both in percentage change and absolute change) for every age level and type of offense than population growth would predict. Indeed, it appears that massive immigration has accompanied an unusually large reduction in Latino crime rates much more dramatic than among non-Hispanic Whites.
    Since 1980, Latino felony arrest rates (down 673 per 100,000 Latinos, or -26%) have fallen much faster than among Whites (down 171, or -13%). For violent felonies, White rates actually increased since 1980 (up 15%), while Latino rates fell (-29%). And the increase in drug arrests for Whites (up 37%) was much higher than for Latinos (up 21%).
    Breaking down races into age groups revealed another surprise: California really is suffering a middle-aged crime wave. That’s you, jackieblue2u.
    For each race, declines in arrest rates among younger ages have offset arrest increases among older ages for violent crime and all felonies, and the increase in drug arrests among the young has been considerably less than for older ages. Young Latinos have led the decline in felonies (down 1,117 arrests per 100,000 population since 1980, or -30%), while older whites have led the arrest surge (up 445, or +89%). Similar patterns are evident for violent crime, state imprisonment, national imprisonment, and comparisons involving other years (i.e., 2008 versus 1990).
    SOURCE: http://www.cjcj.org/post/drug/policy/myth/immigrant/crime/wave

  291. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 1:31 am #

    It’s good to hear a couple people around here besides Vlad and Asia are getting a bit of a clue. I saw a glimmering of awareness in Trip when he alluded to the behavior and mentality of some of the folks in his neighborhood. Incidentally, white suburban middle and upper-class women are the last ones to become realistic about the realities of human population variations. They don’t realize that there is a difference between groups of people until it hits them right between the eyes:
    The Undeclared War
    A white, Roman Catholic teacher in her mid-40s used to commute every day from her pleasant white suburb to one of the most violent slums of Chicago to teach writing in the public schools. On Feb. 8, a nearly six-foot-tall, 170-pound eighth-grader attacked her in her class with a claw hammer and with no more warning than the words “white bitch.” With one blow he destroyed an eye socket and with another he shattered her cheek bone. He was angry because she had threatened him with suspension for misbehavior.
    The teacher now has five metal plates in her head, and her one good eye is held in place with surgical mesh beneath the skin. However, her greatest pain lies in the fact that her assailant had told many other students the night before about his plans, and had repeated his threats the morning of the attack. Some of her own students knew he had brought the hammer to school, but told her nothing. “That’s what hurts,” she says. “A lot of them knew.” After the attack, which left her gushing blood, children from her class scampered out of the room to tell the attacker’s younger brother that the deed had, indeed, been done. Reached by a reporter, the brother said: “She was tricking on him. She deserved it for threatening suspensions.” (John Kass, Violent Kid Ends Teachers Dream — But He Had Help, Chicago Tribune, July 22, 1997. John Kass, Kids, System Beat Teacher Long Before Her Work Was Done, Chicago Tribune, July 24, 1997.)
    And, Jackie, that is exactly what they think of you.

  292. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 1:38 am #

    No Longer Undeclared
    Khalid Abdul Muhammad of the Nation of Islam recently addressed an enthusiastic crowd of 400 at San Francisco State University, urging blacks to “use violence when necessary.” One of his more memorable lines was, “I want to see a movie that shows us killing white folks so hard the blood is flowing into the popcorn.” Then he paused and added, “After all it’s only a movie.” The crowd whooped, leapt to its feet, and punched the air. Admission to the event was $7.00 for students, $10.00 general admission, and $15.00 for “racists.” (Lori Eppstein, Antisemitic Speaker Urges Violence, Washington Jewish Week, June 5, 1997, p. 18.)
    Notice how the racists are charged more. Well, this racist isn’t afraid to say say or write these things. Asoka, you may be right, about those statistics, but also consider that a lot of folks are afraid or reluctant to report on the activities of the gangsters and other crooks.

  293. asoka October 7, 2010 at 1:38 am #

    Whole Earth Discipline: Why Dense Cities, Nuclear Power, Transgenic Crops, Restored Wildlands, and Geoengineering Are Necessary / by Stewart Brand

  294. asoka October 7, 2010 at 1:42 am #

    ooops… left off the description of the book
    Whole Earth Discipline: Why Dense Cities, Nuclear Power, Transgenic Crops, Restored Wildlands, and Geoengineering Are Necessary / by Stewart Brand
    “This is a very scary book by a very bright man, offering a picture of humanity’s future that is both ominous and exhilarating.”
    -Edward O. Wilson
    This eye-opening book by the legendary author of the National Book Award-winning Whole Earth Catalog persuasively details a new approach to our stewardship of the planet.
    Lifelong ecologist and futurist Stewart Brand relies on scientific rigor to shatter myths concerning nuclear energy, urbanization, genetic engineering, and other controversial subjects, showing exactly where the sources of our dilemmas lie and offering a bold, inventive set of policies and design-based solutions for shaping a more sustainable society.
    Thought- provoking and passionately argued, this is a pioneering book on one of the hottest issues facing humanity today.

  295. eightm October 7, 2010 at 2:11 am #

    Why China will Win
    China said they are not increasing the value of their money. That makes me laugh, the US and western capitalists are self destructing themselves in order to follow this cave man, primitive mode of thought known as the profit motive, money should automatically create more, like magic, in a never ending competition, optimization, conglomeration of corporations having more and more power, etc. Well the Chinese could care less of all of this BS, they are “communists” after all, they can change the rules of operation of their “economy” in any way they choose, they can invent anything they choose, they know economy is just a make believe fantasy of the human mind and has no real basis aside from the natural power structures that automatically arise as soon as humans interact.
    And in fact either system is just a different form of power structures, either your boss is the party member or your local capitalist, it doesn’t matter at all, but at least the communists are honest enough not to fool millions of workers that they will be the “next bill gates”, and become a mega boss: at least the communists can see the power structures for what they really are, just arbitrary power relationships giving more power and wealth to the more fortunate, or the more politically connected, or the luckier, and what the hell even the more talented, it doesn’t matter: the US workers are convinced that the capitalists have some metaphysical quality about their “success”, they “deserve it” somehow and are all put in place with a much deeper kind of brainwashing than any other dictatorship has ever achieved.
    So they can manufacture as many items as possible to their heart’s delight, they don’t have to respect any limits as imposed by capitalism (and in fact I read that in Europe they often find huge batches of Chinese crap illegally smuggled that is confiscated, but the Chinese don’t care, they can manufacture another trillions of them as much as they want). Aside from some really high tech items like jet planes, rockets, nuclear power plants, Pentium chips, Cisco routers or genetically engineered drugs designed to alter the perception of reality by your mind (and keep you further put in place and further under control of big pharma), the Chinese can practically manufacture 80 % of most industrial items in any huge batches they choose and flood the world with them. Talk about excess capacity, and in fact they are also overbuilding their country with skyscrapers and apartments, but no bubble will ever pop over there because they don’t have to follow the limitations of capitalism, they will just assign a few thousands apartments to party members…
    The point is, they can act like a unit, like a collectivity of intention, they can work for a higher and more justified denotation known as the nation or the collectivity as opposed to the US style of everyone against everyone else, everyone trying to be everyone else’s boss and creating huge internal conflict. This internal conflict is self destroying the US, while China as a unit, as a nation, as a collectivity will demolish the west, and in fact they are actively hording prime resources in Africa, South America and Asia, and making a lot of friends their not telling them how they should live, while the US has to figure out who will be the next bill gates, how to beat up and lay off more employees in the name of “profit”.
    I read that Chinese factories have way more workers who are way more inefficient compared to the US, but the Chinese could care less, they know that they have millions of people that have to be occupied all day long, while the US just lays off people because they are not “working hard enough”, the are not “generating enough profit”. Now you tell me who in the long run will dominate this world…

  296. Eleuthero October 7, 2010 at 2:20 am #

    Your are dead on, MD. This dictator wants
    to run and/or dictate business policy to
    every damned industry in the country. Cars,
    banks, insurers … I’m sure airlines and
    tech will be next.
    You’re absolutely correct and in a very
    arithmetical way … since it stands to
    reason that new insurees will largely be
    sick people with no insurance who need
    immediate care, all insurers MUST raise
    Many people in America have forgotten the
    idea of the GREATER GOOD. Indeed, striving
    for the greater good is often construed as
    “meanness” to a small minority. The greater
    good concept means that we must not bring
    the entire country down to raise a small
    minority UP. Most people and small businesses
    are already absolutely strapped by health
    care costs and any increases are backbreaking.
    Well said!!

  297. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 2:24 am #

    I’m not sure I trust the accuracy of any statistics made public. Also, I wonder how many violent crimes are not reported (rapes, muggings, e.g.).
    However, the more shocking violent crimes – murder of childen, aggravated assaults, multiple murders – seem to be highly publicized and create fear in the populice. I think media attention skews people’s view of what’s happening out there, a la Michael Moore’s illustration of the media in “Bowling for Columbine”.
    A few years ago, I served on a jury for a case in which a violent assault occurred in a state prison. Some of the witnesses were violent offender prisoners. You watch crime shows on television and think you know about criminals. Let me tell you, unless you have interacted with convicted violent persons, you have no idea how truly scary these people are. One prisoner-witness really was frightening. The look on his face as he was testifying was terrifying, and I don’t scare easily. His eyes – brrr. I absolutely knew his killing me would be very pleasurable for him. Looking back now, I believe
    we would not stand a chance if someone similar and his gang attacked me and my family/friends in a SHTF scenario.

  298. eightm October 7, 2010 at 2:25 am #

    The Chinese know they have huge excess productive capacity, they know that in the long run they will have to discharge it by producing trillions of skyscrapers, trillions of rockets, space exploration, the domination of mind upon the universe, they could care less to give “free salaries” to their workers, they can do that and even more, they don’t have to follow the moralistic US style “you have to earn it or deserve it”, repressive mentality that is killing the US and the west (EU, JAPAN).
    And in fact the factory workers there make 200 dollars a month but have FREE HOUSING AND FOOD AND HEALTH CARE , while in the US factory workers make 1,000 dollars a month but have to pay housing 800 dollars a month rent, food and everything else: the net result US workers make minus 500 dollars a month (debt), Chinese workers at least can bring home 200 dollars for their own use and not pay through the nose basic necessities. But in the US, you have to “deserve it”, you have to “earn it”, you are a piece of crap as soon as your local boss decides that you “deserve” to be laid off.

  299. Eleuthero October 7, 2010 at 2:31 am #

    Well, Asoka, after two tepid months of
    private sector job growth, today’s number
    is right back in negative territory. Now
    we’re losing public AND private sector jobs.
    That’s why the ten year Treasury rallied
    to the tune of a TWELVE basis point drop
    Your idol, Mr. Obama, is KILLING America.
    He’s a dictator who wants to control large
    private industries, community colleges, and
    health insurers. He’s NOT creating jobs.
    He’s NOT causing wage increases. He’s NOT
    doing anything except at the very margins
    like his token pick-and-shovel public works
    projects which are for appearance. It’s like
    trotting out kids with polio for a telethon
    … that’s how manipulative he is.
    Now, we’re losing jobs again, savers are being
    punished by his buddy Heli-Ben, and he kicked
    the non-Keynesians off of his economic team
    so they’d all be on board with debasing the
    dollar as a route to prosperity.
    I’m guessing, Asoka, that you’re a young guy.
    I strongly suggest that you take a basic econ
    course at a CONSERVATIVE institution (not
    someplace where guys like Krugman are considered
    sagacious) followed by some good comments on
    contemporary econ like Laurence Kotlikoff’s
    “The Coming Generational Storm”.
    Between Geithner, Heli-Ben, and the Keynesian
    goofballs on his econ team, we have a recipe
    for trillion dollar annual debts as far as the
    eye can see and M2 aggregate increases that, in
    a precious couple of years, will turn us into a
    netherworld somewhere between 1979 and the
    Weimar Republic.
    I’m not even a dyed-in-the-wool Republican. I
    often vote for Democrats. Obama is an ORWELLIAN
    Democrat … not a Jeffersonian Democrat. That’s
    why he kept Gates in Defense and Heli-Ben in the
    Fed. He’s still continuing Bush’s “perpetual
    war for perpetual peace” and Bush’s saving of
    the risk at the peril of the middle class.
    He’s a corporate Centrist with dictatorial
    leanings. To call him a “progressive” would
    be an insult to the meaning of the word. He’s
    a REgressive.

  300. Eleuthero October 7, 2010 at 2:38 am #

    TBU wrote:
    “Look at history. This is nothing new.”
    What’s with these worthless one-line posts
    of yours? Do you really think we need such
    “inputs” from you?
    This may come as something of a surprise to
    you but I fully expect MOST people NOT to
    read my posts … even if they have a lot of
    content. And I **never** write these content
    free one-line “observations” like I’m the
    freaking Oracle of Delphi.
    What is it about Gen-X and Gen-Y? They take
    narcissism to heights that even Narcissus
    himself didn’t take it. Duh, right, dude,
    … we’re just sitting here with baited
    breath waiting for your little parables.

  301. mika. October 7, 2010 at 8:03 am #

    Economically, it all boils down to the fact that corporatism and “Free Trade” is a swindle of the first order, and a complete racket. The government mafia is in on the scam because the politicians that are put up for the electorate are hand-picked by the shadow government. The lying propagandizing MSM is also in on the racket because they’re basically owned and controlled by the government mafia/shadow government.
    Participation in the corporatist scheme is what gives the scheme its power. The way to break this power and to break the shadow government is to stop participating. We need to stop patronizing corporate institutions, and start delegitimizing and delegalizing them. A good political first step would be for ordinary people to get involved in local elections processees, advocating corporate liability reform and secession from the Federal Union.

  302. lbendet October 7, 2010 at 8:43 am #

    I just read your entry re: Obama as dictator and am really surprised. Although I usually agree with you on most matters discussed here, (incl. the greater good in another of your posts) I beg to disagree with you here.
    Webster Tarpley makes similar claims and he does have some interesting insights, but I don’t buy into most of he says, literally.
    When it come right down to it, it was Cheney who was pressing for the Unitary Executive role of the president and the last administration who looked more proto-facist than this one. They said deficits don’t matter and started two costly wars and gave those for whom we are really fighting for a tax break to boot!
    Of course Obama is a corporate centerist, but no more Orwellian than the former bunch who ran this country into the ground.
    I suspect that anyone in the role of president will find themselves looking through the looking glass regardless of what party/ideology etc., because I think once they get there they find out this isn’t quite the system they thought it was. (–And who they are working for.)
    As to the auto industry, manufacturing has to be kept here, especially an industry that could help with military hardware. This govt. part-ownership deal is temporary and other countries subsidized their industry.
    Do you really what the Chinese to build everything. How do you think WWII helped build up the economy through means of production? Remember the military industrial complex? You might not have liked that role for this country, but as far as building the economy, it did work.
    In the case of the banks, I mentioned in an earlier post that Reagan put the S&Ls into receivership. William K. Black was on Bill Moyers some time ago and described what he had to do during that crisis.
    I am working on site somewhere and don’t have time to blog, but I thought I’d respond to your entry. The whole system has to be revamped. There will be no job creation here until the leadership decides to manufacture here and use the stimulus packages for American workers instead of Asia and moving more industry offshore. We are working at cross-purposes here and the Chamber of Commerce is on of the worst players on this scene.

  303. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 9:55 am #

    Don’t get me wrong TrippT, I applaud your efforts, and those of you doing similar endeavours.
    But what I was getting at is that I think there are two types of survivalists: those who were more or less born and raised that way, and those (myself included) who are “born-again survivalists”, i.e. we weren’t raised with that mentality. In other words, we aren’t street people.
    Those of us who I call “survivalist hipsters” (myself included) are well-educated, well-read, well-travelled, internet and technology-savvy, conscious citizens. Most of us have become aware of the real world around us, and see the consequences that are highly probable to precipitate from the insane behaviours that are predominant, and have subsequently made a choice to change our paths.
    Our definition of “survivalism” varies from individual to individual. Despite SJMom’s hidden bedroom shotgun, I would say most of us are more pacifists than antagonizers at heart. And I would bet she purchased/aquired it initally for other reasons, but it might come in handy should things start to unravel.
    Although us hipster survivalists might be ahead of the curve in managing a crumbling infrastructure, we might alternately be vulnerable to those who want what we have and are willing to use any means to procure it. In a world where food and energy is scarce, and moral compasses have been abandonned, I suspect the gloves will come off.
    I shot a small bird once when I was a teen. (I couldn’t believe I actually had such an amazing aim.) And I’ll never forget it. I intentionally killed another living thing. Senseless and pointless. Still makes me sick after all these years.
    So would I shoot another human being to protect my “world”? It’s a hard question to answer. I doubt I would and I suspect most of “us” wouldn’t make that choice, because one would have to ask themselves the ultimate question: when would it end in a deteriorating social environment?

  304. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 9:56 am #

    I’ll repeat a truism – figures don’t lie but liars can figure.
    You say:
    “Latinos still show considerably less growth in arrest over time (both in percentage change and absolute change) for every age level and type of offense than population growth would predict.”
    Arrest rates are NOT, repeat NOT, the same as crime rates. Immigrant communities are insular and much crime is unreported. If crime does not lead to a trip to the hospital – it did not happen – officially.
    Also, how do you arrest people who can easily cross the border to avoid arrest?

  305. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 10:04 am #

    Why China will Win
    Some of your ideas concerning billions of skyscrapers reaching the sky are a little bit hyperbolic sometimes.
    But I do believe that the Chinese will Win the global domination contest, for many of the reasons you suggest – they will control the planet in 50 years.
    If the planet is still fit for large numbers of humans in 50 years – – – ?
    But all we as US citizens (AKA Americans – by standard conventions) can do is push to lower growth in populations and try to control our military adventures.

  306. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 10:08 am #

    “Tripp, have you had any experience (or know of projects) with rebuilding soil in desert areas like Arizona, New Mexico?”
    [I entered the yard through a gap between arching trees, and the temperature plummeted. The air here was fresh, cool, moist, unlike the dusty, sinus-withering stuff I’d been breathing outside.]
    -Toby Hemenway, in his book “Gaia’s Garden,” commenting on the permaculture site built by Santa Fe, NM, sculptor Roxanne Swentzell.
    Continuing…[A canopy of walnut trees, pinon pine, and New Mexico black locust sheltered a lush understory of pomegranates, nectarines, jujube trees, and almonds. An edible passionflower swarmed up a rock wall. Grapevines arched over an entry trellise. Two small ponds sparkled with rainwater caught by the adobe house’s roof.]
    From what I understand, the soil and climate at her site, now known as Flowering Tree Permaculture Institute, were typical brutal high desert. She describes the place as “no trees, no plants, no animals, just pounded-down dirt and lots of ants.”
    Here is her website:
    I’m also aware of a Texas scientist/engineer? who invented a tractor implement that basically creates a pattern of depressions in the hardpan (of west Texas desert soils). The little depressions have proved to be a mighty force in revegetating large tracts of desert land, as they give blowing seeds and water a place to settle.
    I personally performed a follow-up experiment in my Washington garden last year. There was a small section of southern slope that was hard as a rock. My wife and mom-in-law said nothing, not even grass, had ever grown there. So I tried the divet thing I learned from this guy, knocking a chunk of god-awful concrete-like soil out of the slope in a diagonal pattern every 18 inches with a spade. In this case I mulched the area with some wheat straw too. According to father-in-law, it’s now deep black fertile soil. Just another part of the garden. About an hour of work converted ~150 s.f. of wasteland into productive garden loam.
    I don’t mean to keep repeating myself, but if one would read just two titles, “Gaia’s Garden” and “Teaming With Microbes,” all of these tasks would go from daunting to piece of cake.
    Hope that helps.

  307. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 10:28 am #

    I am all in favor of law abiding citizens owning weapons. I’ve posted before that those of us who own weapons provide security for our pacifist neighbors. This is always true WITHOUT FIRING A SHOT because criminals have no way of knowing which homes are armed and which are not.
    With that said, though, a shotgun in the attic is only a first step. A weapon is a tool, nothing more. You need to practice using any weapon enough to be comfortable with it. You need some kind of actual formal training on any weapon.
    I prefer shotguns to all other weapons – as a general purpose firearm also useful for home defense in urban settings. But shotguns aren’t perfect.
    My first caution *over the internet like this as your instructor* would be to be sure your shotgun is small enough for you to handle, load, and clear easily and safely. The only practical way to find that out is to go to a firearms range that can handle shotguns – get an instructor beside you – and fire off a few rounds of various types.
    And I’m guessing you’ve got your shotgun in the attic to reduce the risk of theft and/or the hazard to small(er?) children.
    Don’t be afraid to ask your instructor anything. There’s more than one way to secure a weapon from theft or misuse. And you kid(s?) can only benefit from knowing how to safely handle a shotgun.

  308. asoka October 7, 2010 at 10:31 am #

    E. said: “He’s a corporate Centrist with dictatorial leanings.”
    My, oh my! How scary is that! Sounds like just the kind of fellow to demonize on CFN.
    Just overlook that Obama has had more legislative success than any other modern U.S. president… including FDR, LBJ, and Reagan.
    P.S. Legislative success is not dictatorial. Nowadays it requires a majority in the House and 60 votes in the Senate. Hardly dictatorial. Hardly scary at all.

  309. asoka October 7, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    Tripp, you are awesome, and inspiring.
    That is just the kind of information I needed.

  310. The Mook October 7, 2010 at 10:43 am #

    When he says hipster, I picture someone who would attend the Philadelphia Folk Festival. And Tripp, I think you would enjoy that immensely. Music, booze, peace, love and if you go down to the creek, nudity. I think what he is saying is that if there was a Metallica concert across the street there would be a good chance for confrontation after the bangers ran out of booze. They would be across the street smashing and grabbing. Today, they would eventually be apprehended and thrown in jail. In the not so distant future the picture may be much uglier.

  311. mifa October 7, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    why dont you take the train on your book tour? its fun. and i know the train runs from seattle to bellingham.

  312. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    Enviro – that’s a good thoughtful post concerning “protecting your world,” as you put it.
    Some on here are declared pacifists, who are willing to suffer and die at the hands of others without a fight.
    Others one here can’t wait for an exciting collapse – I guess so they can start taking sniper shots at those with more or less melanin – or something. 😉
    Then there are those of us in the middle – we’d never intentionally harm another human unless it was *necessary,* but we can’t give ourselves a satisfactory definition of that term.
    So let’s think about what BeanTownBill posted:
    “and I don’t scare easily. His eyes – brrr. I absolutely knew his killing me would be very pleasurable for him.”
    We all know there are such people. I avoid contact with them if at all possible. They are the reason why my friends in law enforcement always travel with weapons – even when they are on a peaceful trip with friends in another state.
    But Bill, don’t give up on defending yourself, ever. A ruthless, hating killer has no power against proper weapons and tactics.
    Looking back now, I believe
    we would not stand a chance if someone similar and his gang attacked me and my family/friends in a SHTF scenario
    Enviro, to put the best *hypothetical and slightly humorous* face on a serious question –
    If BTB’s man above were armed with a lesser weapon – coming at my family from 100 feet away – across an open field – and I’ve got my 12 gauge loaded as it normally would be for such a situation – – –
    I will guarantee you that the man will fall before he harms me or my family.
    Good Lord (lord) Willing
    May the attacker rest in Peace.

  313. mika. October 7, 2010 at 11:12 am #

    Legislative success is not dictatorial.
    The labels (“communist” “capitalist” “socialist” “fascist” “dictatorial”) are meaningless, the result is the same. The simple fact is that the population at large is getting fscked by the oligarchy in power.

  314. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 11:27 am #

    China will not win.
    “They” said in the ’70’s the oil producers would control the world because that was when we had oil crises and the Saudis,et al, were making obscene amounts of money; “they” said in the ’80’s Japan would dominate because the Japanese had a great business plan and were ramping up market share left and right; “they” said in the ’90’s that America was the world’s sole superpower because we won the cold war; “they” said in the ’00’s Islam would be taking over the world after their terrorist attacks; and “they” now say in the ’10’s that China will dominate because of their great population and markets(I take “they” to mean popular opinion).
    Economic is not a science, it is an opinion. Ask 10 physicists how the planets orbit the sun and you will get the same answer. Ask 10 economists what the world economy will be like in 2012 and you will get 10 different answers.
    While we were jealous of Japan’s economy, the Japanese government was practicing corporate welfare and economic protectionalism. Last time I looked, I couldn’t find the Japanese hegemony.
    Look at Chinese rivers and the Chinese countryside. It is polluted way beyond America’s. They have a much more serious water problem than we do. With vacant cities, let alone office buildings, how do the people earn enough to stay alive? Oh, you say, the government supplies whatever its citizens need but don’t have. So where does the government get the economic power to do this? Oh, you say, they make their workers produce “stuff” very cheaply that the rest of the world will buy en mass. OK, but what happens when TSHTF in America and Europe and their citizens can no longer even afford the $30 DVD players? Oops. Things go to hell in China, too.
    True economic growth, and hence power and influence, result from the production of innovative goods and services, not the production of cheap, knock-off products and printed money.
    I’m very interested in playing the “who will take over the world” in the ’20’s game.

  315. ozone October 7, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    “I don’t mean to keep repeating myself, but if one would read just two titles, “Gaia’s Garden” and “Teaming With Microbes,” all of these tasks would go from daunting to piece of cake.
    Hope that helps.”
    It most assuredly does!
    Time for me to get on to HOW to do some things, rather than the WHAT.
    (I’ve spent too much of my time on the abode, and not quite enough on the enviro. I’m way behind you and Dr. Pangloss and RippedThunder; just hoping I’m not too late (my biggest worry).

  316. mila59 October 7, 2010 at 11:40 am #

    Chicken tractors? Like Joel Salatin? You’re all right, man. That is so cool! I want a tour of your place. Or post your lecture schedule…or do you have a blog?

  317. asoka October 7, 2010 at 11:40 am #

    Dear All,
    Nobel Peace Laureate Wangari Matthai narrates this brief video:
    She writes:
    “This 10th of October millions of people around the world are coming together in their local neighborhoods to take action against climate change- join me and the Green Belt Movement to plant trees to create a lasting change for us all … and future generations through 10:10:10.
    Be a Hummingbird!”
    To which I add the Kenyan benediction: Twahamwe. “Pull together.”

  318. mila59 October 7, 2010 at 11:44 am #

    And P.S. I’m getting those books. Thanks for the tips. Maybe my backyard garden will really get going.

  319. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 11:50 am #

    I will go down fighting if I have to. If I’m lucky my family and I will survive, too. I just remember my feelings watching that man from the jury box. Let’s all be realistic when it comes to violence. It’s a horrible situation to be in, having to kill people to stay alive, especially people who like dishing out pain, and don’t mind at all suffering it themselves.

  320. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 11:51 am #

    Awesome. You’ve inspired me to read those books.
    What it really reinforces to me is that most life on this planet is far more adaptable and has far greater resilience than us humans. Despite our destructive ways, the planet is truly a life-force, that will persist. That is a relief.
    We may end up killing off almost every living creature including ourselves, but the planet will evolve new species (likely over millenia) as it has in the past, adapting to and at the same time modifying it’s surrounding conditions.
    It’s evidence such as you illustrate, which tells us that we are not the dominant species on this planet after all, but it is the bacteria, viruses, and other microbes that have persevered seemingly intolerable conditions over billions of years that have true dominion over the earth.

  321. ozone October 7, 2010 at 12:15 pm #

    “Folks” are getting bunched about a Muslim takeover of da woild and how corporatist the gummint is (sure, I can go with that decades-long proven argument), BUT, it would seem to me kinda besides the point, other than what to watch for in future AFTER “ashes, ashes, all fall down”, doesn’t it?
    Loose confederations of usa-an assholes will be a far more of a “clear and present danger”, IMO.
    Witness, oh… let’s say… Sharron Angle. Is this the kind of person you’d like representing you, or perhaps RUNNING your regional fiefdom? Really? (Without getting “lesser-evilism” about it.) In order to save yourself from _____? Yes, history does indeed give us clues to what happens when power is given to assholes/demagogues in times of fear and loathing.
    Answer up, because, this gummint is on a path of certain self-destruction by pissing away all [and every type of] resource[s] currently at its’ disposal. This will usher in the “interesting times” those dreaded CHINESE have been blabbing about for a couple thousand years. (BTW, Do you suppose those very Chinisois will be having some internal crap of their very own to take care of once they’ve poisoned themselves with “the modern life”? …As well as damn near everybody else who’ve invested in it?)
    Hmmmm, sorry, that’s two important questions to ask ourselves. Ah well, they do point in sort of the same [contracting] direction.

  322. asoka October 7, 2010 at 12:50 pm #

    Ozone, I am so confused. I was raised to believe the Vietnamese communists were going to take over the world. Those were simple times, the lies were simple, and we knew what was scary: Viet Cong in black pajamas who were going to take over the USA if we didn’t stop them in Vietnam.
    Now, as beantown points out, we have had a succession of scary candidates: Saudis, the Chinese, the Muslims, etc.
    The right-wing reminds me all the time that I should be afraid of Obama because he is a socialist, a Muslim, a tyrant, etc.
    What if, as Mika says, I’m being secretly controlled by a shadowy secret group? How can I focus my fear on an unknown controller? How can I properly be afraid?
    It’s getting more difficult each day for me to maintain the proper fear level.
    I am not afraid of the Muslims, the Taliban, Osama bin Laden, the Chinese, or Obama. I love them all. What is wrong with me?
    It’s just so difficult to be scared anymore. Maybe if I just watch more MSNBC prison programs my fear will return?
    Or bed bugs? Maybe they are the real enemy?
    Now that the fear is gone, all I feel is love.

  323. mika. October 7, 2010 at 1:53 pm #

    What if, as Mika says, I’m being secretly controlled by a shadowy secret group?
    Jihad is an open conspiracy. Jihadis and the Koran are quite explicit in their aspirations to take over the world. Whether it be thru thieving imperialist land conquests, ethnic genocides, cultural genocides, forced conversions, demographic bombs, the end result for which they strive for is the same.

  324. mika. October 7, 2010 at 1:56 pm #

    I love them all. What is wrong with me?
    Other than being a faggot, you’re a throughly emotionally damaged taqiyya tool.

  325. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 2:03 pm #

    “It most assuredly does!
    Time for me to get on to HOW to do some things, rather than the WHAT.”
    You’re already on your way, O3. But the doin’ is even more rewarding than the plannin’! Jump on in, my man.

  326. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 2:12 pm #

    Given the facts of population shifts (white people diminishing, brown and yellow people exploding) us white folk might as well just sit back and relax while we watch the battle for world domination play out between the brown folks and the yellow folks.
    Judging from the mess we’ve already made, and the inevitable mess they’re going to make in their battle, their isn’t going to be much of any value left to dominate.

  327. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 2:14 pm #

    If you’ve really thought it through that far then you are way ahead of most.
    “I will go down fighting if I have to. If I’m lucky my family and I will survive, too……. Let’s all be realistic when it comes to violence. It’s a horrible situation to be in….”
    My overriding point would be that if you’re ever in a SHTF survival situation – that it’s much TOO late to figure out how to load your weapon and whether you are willing to use it or not.
    And one episode involving jury service still creeps me out, and it’s been over 5 years ago. My advice is to put it out of your mind – you did your duty for society. It’s society staring into they eyes of that killer and not you personally.
    Or something along those lines – anyway, that sort of mental defense works for me.
    And on a ?somewhat? happier note. Who DO you see to “Win” in 2035?
    It would have been easy to project the US as “winners” in 1947. And we were – we just gave it away by various methods by 1984.
    The Japanese won for a while – demographics and birthrates tripped them up, however.
    Saudis never had a chance – to insular and religiously schizophrenic – thus proving money isn’t everything when it comes to World domination.
    I see the future going Muslim as far as birthrates and demographics.
    And the future going Chinese as far as economic and military power.
    I’m not sure I can project how the people of North America will be dealt with by this future.
    If we don’t somehow get another lucky break from somewhere or Somewhere. 😉

  328. mika. October 7, 2010 at 2:26 pm #

    Cultural memes transcend skin color. The world is sick because it allowed itself to become sick by sick cultural programming. Religion is one such programming. Racism is another.

  329. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    “most life on this planet is far more adaptable and has far greater resilience than us humans.”
    I agree with everything you said except this. Judging by our species’ geographic range, and highly variable lifestyle, I’d say we’re pretty damned adaptable!
    Now I agree that major shifts in climate or nutrient cycles, etc, always affect the biggest animals first. But sadly, I think we’re still a lot more likely to lose elephants and whales than the medium-sized, intelligent and dexterous great ape that has history and science, and language and technology, at its command. I think a few of us will probably persist for some time yet. Not 6 billion, but some.
    But you’re spot on about microbes being the real rulers of Earth! Always have been, always will be. They’re very good at what they do. Now we just have to learn to listen and cooperate.

  330. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm #

    “Or post your lecture schedule…or do you have a blog?”
    I do have a blog: http://www.smallbatchgarden.blogspot.com, but no lecture schedule yet. Still working on that one;)

  331. mika. October 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm #

    I see the future going Muslim as far as birthrates and demographics.
    You should be looking at deathrates not birthrates. Without subsidy (oil, water, food) the future demographics of Jihadistan is very bleak. The subsidy will soon come to an end. As will US protection of these lazy and greedy primitives.

  332. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    It is all about the skill, the firepower, the willingness to use it, and how many fighting men you can muster. I have been studying you people for awhile now. It looks like absolutely none of you could raise a force of even 5 fighting men to defend your places. In fact among frequent posters with the exception of POC it looks like you can’t even raise 3. What is working in favor of your safety though is how insignificant you — like most people — are. The hoodlums are going to want arms, electronics, jewelry, even clothes, meat, and alcohol. They won’t come for your vegetables. What they will really want to take from you most is the guns and ammo some of you have been stalking up. Incidentally I can get together about 4 or 5 in their 30’s on fairly short notice.

  333. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 2:44 pm #

    This might well be the epitome of decadence in our oil-drenched, hi-tech world…
    Given the sophisticated abilities of robotics, I’d say the line staff are simply there for the eye-candy factor.

  334. eightm October 7, 2010 at 2:49 pm #

    JAPAN became and still remains a technological and economic powerhouse: it is the third richest country in the world with only 120 million people, they have all kinds of very advanced and complex technology in all sectors, they have the first automotive producer worldwide, they furnish atomic power plants to China, they have advanced technology for semiconductors etc. etc.
    They don’t lay off millions of workers, they have a huge amount of cash in their postal bank, they have a very high standard of living, etc. etc. And you guys consider that a failure ? you really believe in the fantasy of “the lost decades of JAPAN” ?
    And to be fair, even the USA San Fransisco Bay are Silicon Valley is an economical and technological powerhouse.
    The point is, China wants to become one, and will, and they are aiming at large scale corporations, large scale programs, etc.
    The US wants to help “small businesses”, they should be investing trillions of dollars in Exploring Mars, in thousands of Rockets, in thousands of Skyscrapers, in very large scale, POWERHOUSE endeavors, in exploring the solar system, in fusion energy, in gigantic particle accelerators 100 miles wide, etc.
    Instead they cop out and want to invest in the little bill gates in his garage hoping to create another blockbuster industry like Microsoft.
    We need huge companies, huge projects that give direction to millions of people and create future, optimism, desire to achieve and be successful as a nation and collectivity, not the small company crap, and lay off the lazy people crap we have today…

  335. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 2:52 pm #

    Asoka claimed to be up in his 60’s. Obama is largely a figure-head with a good speaking ability.
    He is no dictator. He doesn’t run the show. The banks, oil companies, arms contractors, and various other individuals and entities do.

  336. progressorconserve October 7, 2010 at 2:52 pm #

    I’m talking about Islam as a global converting force. Converting by ANY means, avoiding alcohol, women submissive – modern Islam sounds like the Calvinist Christianity of my American forebears.
    You’re talking about “jihadistan” as a location in the Middle East. That’s a different question. And at any rate I believe the most powerful protection by 2035 will be Chinese, not US.

  337. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 2:57 pm #

    Made you look!
    TBU wrote:
    “Look at history. This is nothing new.”
    What’s with these worthless one-line posts
    of yours? Do you really think we need such
    “inputs” from you?
    Well, certainly YOU do!
    This may come as something of a surprise to
    you but I fully expect MOST people NOT to
    read my posts … even if they have a lot of
    content. And I **never** write these content
    free one-line “observations” like I’m the
    freaking Oracle of Delphi.
    The oracle has spoken. So let it be written. So let it be done.
    What is it about Gen-X and Gen-Y? They take
    narcissism to heights that even Narcissus
    himself didn’t take it. Duh, right, dude,
    … we’re just sitting here with baited
    breath waiting for your little parables.
    What is it with those over-generalizations, the inter-generational hostility and contempt? Why is someone with such a nasty attitude as you in education?

  338. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    Now that sounds good, reducing federal and corporate power.

  339. eightm October 7, 2010 at 3:01 pm #

    Large societies with millions of people need a purpose, a goal, a large scale goal, that is the reason: the economic return is not even important, what is important is the technology and jobs and large scale achievment that is obtained. We need meaning, not puny little office politics fights. We need a project like the moon landing was, something to be proud of, not the puny idea of making the capitalist boss rich becasue he lays off workers.

  340. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 3:04 pm #

    I agree with you on it being too late if the barbarians have already entered past the gates. I’m in that middle group who will kill someone to protect my family or me. No hesitation – I THINK. I say “I think” because I’ve never been in that kind of situation, and how do you know how you’ll react when the actual time comes? But I know me prety well, and I believe I could do it.
    Thank you for your advice on dealing with my jury duty. It has no effect on me other than creeping me out (a good and accurate term to use) when I think about it every once in a while.
    For me, 2035 is a little far out in time. But I do have a new candidates for the next winner: Brazil. I’m not unequivocally stating I’m sure, but I think they have a chance, if they don’t mess up.
    I don’t agree with you, however, in saying the muslims and the Chinese are the future. Ultimately, population isn’t the determining factor in taking over the world, otherwise the Chinese would have already risen to dominance; they have had the most population of any country all my life.
    Muslims don’t have the internal cohesiveness to maintain control. All they will do is squabble among themselves. Remember the Crusades; the west mostly won and hte near future will be a replay. Between the Chinese and the muslims, muslims will cause us the greater strife, IMO.

  341. asoka October 7, 2010 at 3:14 pm #

    PorC said: “avoiding alcohol, women submissive – modern Islam sounds like the Calvinist Christianity of my American forebears.”
    Sounds like my Southern Baptist brother today!
    By the way, it is incorrect of say “women submissive” as if all Muslim countries were identical. What happens in Saudi Arabia is very different from what happens in Dubai or Kuwait.
    Even historically, from the Quran itself, women have had more rights in Islam than in Christianity.

  342. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 3:14 pm #

    I am reluctant to actually K a person, but I don’t see those teenage black male monsters as real people, more as sometimes jibbering subhuman demonic threats. When I see some of these schools in lower class areas disgorging hordes of delinquent — generally some combination of dark-skinned, nappy-haired, and moronic — human refuse, the idea of having them at the very least removed far away (thousands of miles away in other counties, other continents preferrably)is very appealing.

  343. mika. October 7, 2010 at 3:18 pm #

    Call it Jihadistan, call it dar al-islam, it is a fundamental tenet of Islam. The free demographic ride on the back of the technological west is almost over. Places where Jihadis dominate culturally (Jihadistan) will be disaster areas of the most severe kind. I wouldn’t be surprised if these areas lose 90% of their current population. Other places like the US, Europe, Russia, Israel, China, India, Philippines, etc., will see their Jihadi population expelled or simply exterminated.

  344. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 3:38 pm #

    Notice, how similar in essence your statement was to mine. We are actually cut from the same cloth.
    (You didn’t know I was part Jewish by the way, did you?) Am thinking a good way of dealing with the moronic insane jihadi (raiding) camel-jockeys is to pen them up, give them small arms, and have them do in each other the same way black scum are fenced off in their ghettos and their habitats infused with guns, liquor and drugs to encourage them to off each other. It is a system that works very well.

  345. mika. October 7, 2010 at 3:55 pm #

    I don’t have any problems with people’s ethnic cultural national racial identity. I do have a problem with ethnic cultural religious racial economic memes that advocate/practice imperialism and domination over others. It that respect, to my eyes, you’re no different than a nazi arab jihadi soviet chinese or yankee imperialist scumbag.

  346. asia October 7, 2010 at 3:56 pm #

    remember the PLO getting a standing ovation at the UN?
    remember the 1970s resolution there to
    ‘have zionism = fascism’??
    did you check my links of this week or last?
    the book review i posted yday?
    what are the odds the UN [whos real agenda was figured out long ago]WILL EQUATE RADICAL ISLAM WITH FASCISM????

  347. asia October 7, 2010 at 4:02 pm #

    ‘Why China will Win’..ALL DEPENDS ON HOW U DEFINE ‘WINNING’..
    if china [and /or george soros] buy up africa maybe theyll win….china has ruined its own country..thats why it rolled into tibet looking at water there for its own lowlands..so maybe thats where WW3 ill start..india/pakistan/china all with different govts but with the similar need for water for the billions of people in thos 3 countries..about 2 to 3 billion, maybe more.

  348. mika. October 7, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    There is no such thing as radical islam. What there is, is a subset of a population culturally subjugated and dominated by islamists.

  349. asia October 7, 2010 at 4:07 pm #

    ‘Another thing to throw into the mix is copper theft’
    australia is more like albania?

  350. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 4:11 pm #

    Tripp, have you read Janine Benyus’ book on biomimicry? I think you’d really enjoy it.

  351. San Jose Mom 51 October 7, 2010 at 4:18 pm #

    I would appreciate it if you didn’t use the word faggot.

  352. San Jose Mom 51 October 7, 2010 at 4:39 pm #

    I don’t think the trains in the U.S. work well enough to warrent using them on a book tour, because Mr. Kunstler has to show up on time for his appearences.
    1. Freight trains have priority over passenger trains in most cases…meaning you waste time in the RR siding on a passenger.
    2. I checked out pricing for our family to go to Salt Lake City on the train at Christmas. The price is outrageous and it gets into SLC at 3:00 a.m. Yuk. To drive a family of four and a beagle in a minivan costs 2 1/2 tanks of gas ($125.00) and takes 13 hours.
    3. Last summer I had the swell idea of maybe taking the Canadian railway from Vancouver to
    Banff to see the gorgeous Canadian Rockies. It would have cost $350 bucks per person ONE WAY!!
    Maybe trains would work for a book tour in Europe, but in the U.S. it’s too expensive and too slow.

  353. envirofrigginmental October 7, 2010 at 4:55 pm #

    I’ll second that. I haven’t noticed anyone in these comments ever using the ‘n’ word… even the racists.

  354. Funzel October 7, 2010 at 4:55 pm #

    If I was 30 years younger and absolutely wanted to move to Maine or Vermont to live and retire,the first thing I would look for is a nice hill with southern exposure.I would dig a hole for an underground house,no more than 1500 sq ft with southern exposure of the living area and bedrooms in the back.Since there is no basement,I would need a junk room.The building would have 2 walls,with room to walk around the perimeter.It would have 2 entrances,one through the garage,above ground,the other would just be a circular staircase in back leading up into a tiny sun room.At least even with no heat and plenty of dirt on top,I would not freeze to death or the pipes bursting.(never heard of a ground hog freezing to death)It would supply me with a root cellar,,possibly a well dug right there and a septic system outside,below the floor level,all set for TLE.

  355. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 5:56 pm #

    Hmmmm. I forgot all about underground housing. Good idea. I know that the temperature would stay a steady 55 degrees F underground, but I remember my parents home in the Boston area having broken water pipes because the water lines running from the main were only 4 feet deep instead of 6 feet.
    Unless you are a really old geezer (I’m not young myself), I would think that with some money and the right digging equipment, and maybe some manpower, you could build it.

  356. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 6:06 pm #

    You wrote: Large societies with millions of people need a purpose, a goal, a large scale goal…
    On this comment, I only agree with you about 1000%. Keep that kind of thinking in the forefront of your mind, bro.

  357. BeantownBill October 7, 2010 at 6:25 pm #

    I agree with you, too, that microbes ultimately rule, but if we humans succeed in wiping out all life on this planet, that may be it for the biosphere forever. Forget about global warming, and say hello to solar warming. It seems our sun, as part of its natural evolution, will begin a gradual warming process, so that in 400 million years earth’s temperature will have risen to the point that our atmosphere and oceans will have boiled off, and the earth will be a sterile ball. 400M years is a small amount of time in cosmic terms. I hope people in this blog don’t get too depressed, but I’m trying to induce a grand sense of perspective here. I believe I may have mentioned solar warming in an earlier post.

  358. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 7:07 pm #

    I think we have more time than that, maybe on the order of a billion to 1.5 billion years before the sun heats up the earth too much. There are also problems with the atmosphere escaping due to other reasons which will also lead to the water escaping, the earth’s interior cooling off, and the soil becoming less fertile.

  359. John66 October 7, 2010 at 7:15 pm #

    Here it comes….
    Run for cover….
    The dollar is falling!
    Oh well…. when it rains, it pours.

  360. John66 October 7, 2010 at 7:20 pm #

    Wake up folks! There’s a storm a-comin’! And it gonna be pretty either.
    “Weak economy has nations waging currency wars.”

  361. Cash October 7, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    I am not afraid of the Muslims, the Taliban, Osama bin Laden, the Chinese, or Obama. I love them all. What is wrong with me? – Asoka
    I’m pretty sure you don’t mean a word of what you say.
    The unfortunate part, Asoka, is that, even if you don’t mean a word of what you say, nonsense like this has a large audience. Words matter. Defencelessness as a doctrine seems to be in vogue. Actually it’s been in vogue for a long time.
    Do you think you’re safe and secure deep in the bowels of the USA? Maybe you are. Maybe for now. But times change. The Romans felt pretty superior and secure too. Look what happened to them. American Aboriginals probably felt pretty secure. Look what happened to them.
    About those nasty, nasty commies: I worked with a woman who managed to escape from the Ukraine sometime after WW2 and came to Canada. Most of her family died in the 1930s during Stalin’s genocide. Wasn’t just her family, Stalin murdered millions of Ukrainians.
    I also worked with a Chinese guy who as a child during the Cultural Revolution was taken to playing fields with hs school mates to watch executions.
    I also worked with a Vietnamese fellow that was kept imprisoned for years in a communist re-education camp where he was slowly starved. He worked as an accounting clerk in Toronto when I met him.
    Nice people those commies eh?
    You get to call things the way you see them. So do I. I’ve heard personal accounts of what those communist cockroaches were capable of. The folks I listened to were just ordinary working people and not smooth Republican propagandists.
    How can you properly be afraid? Just a suggestion: Use your head.

  362. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 7:53 pm #

    (Lower)Mississppi as a Black Territory
    I have been promoting this idea for awhile now.
    Note this has already been discussed by a number of esteemed gentleman.
    The third solution Grant considers is the establishment of a separate black nation within the territory of the United States. This he tends to reject because it would involve the abandonment of large sections of the South, but he admits that something similar had already occurred in some areas, both in America and, especially, in the West Indies:
    “This has actually happened in some places along the lower Mississippi River, where the numbers of the Negroes have become so overwhelming that the few remaining Whites have simply moved out and abandoned the district to them. It has happened and is happening in the West Indies. Haiti and Santo Domingo have been entirely turned over to Negroes and other examples of West Indian Islands almost abandoned to Negroes can be found.”

  363. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 7:57 pm #

    “Tripp, have you read Janine Benyus’ book on biomimicry?”
    Not yet, but it’s on my list!

  364. asoka October 7, 2010 at 8:00 pm #

    Cash said: “Do you think you’re safe and secure deep in the bowels of the USA? ”
    Do you think I have only lived in the USA? I’ve been out and about in the third world and have been on the receiving end of AK-47s in my travels. My attitude has always been to act with lovingkindness in all situations, in peace and war.
    And since you asked: the commies were nice people who were asked, or forced, to do horrible things by a political system.
    Same can be said of nice fascists, nice capitalists, and nice drug lords. Very personable and gracious as long as you represent no threat to them. Cutthroat murderers if you get in their way.
    Practice lovingkindness and you can get along with humanity as it is in its current state of REALITY. That has been my experience. Living in a heart space works, so I don’t need to use my head as much.

  365. treebeardsuncle October 7, 2010 at 8:03 pm #

    Note also that the problem with Mexican indians coming into the United States has also been recognized for a long time. From the same issue of American Rennaissance and additional quote of Madison Grant is given. I wholeheartedly concur with this sentiment.
    “No doubt the Mexican Indian is well suited to his environment, and his traditional habits are well suited to him. This does not mean, however, that either has any important contribution to make to the United States which would be realized by a northward mass migration of agricultural and industrial serfs. On the contrary, the Mexican immigration to the United States, which is made up overwhelmingly of the poorer Indian element, has brought nothing but disadvantages.”

  366. trippticket October 7, 2010 at 8:09 pm #

    Tired back tonight. Been setting posts and mixing concrete. I might have to have a glass of vino.
    Alright! Yes, concrete is energetically expensive, but I like it, OK? It looks clean, and will help those posts last longer in my fungally-crowded soil. I’m with the Romans on the concrete issue. Use it! It’s strong and it lasts.

  367. CaptSpaulding October 7, 2010 at 8:12 pm #

    Hi progressorconserve. Actually, I think Muslim women are starting to assert themselves in their societies. For example, I’ve heard that on saturday nights in Kabul, they’ve been having wet burqa contests.

  368. San Jose Mom 51 October 7, 2010 at 8:21 pm #

    Loving kindness is a good philosophy. In some areas of my life, I practice it, in other areas, I do not. I try to practice it when I drive and especially on our crazy, California freeways.
    But if someone says something mean about my children…I turn into a witch.

  369. mika. October 7, 2010 at 8:46 pm #

    My attitude has always been to act with lovingkindness in all situations, in peace and war.
    That’s what one might expect to hear from a moral idiot. But I strongly suspect there’s more at play than innocent idiotism. My suspicion is that there’s a strong component of jihadist taqiyya at play here.
    “Those that are kind to the cruel are cruel to the kind.” – Talmud.

  370. Eleuthero October 7, 2010 at 9:01 pm #

    Naturally, we are going to disagree from
    time to time since you are likely a Democrat
    while I am a disenfranchised Republican.
    I know that my accusation of Obama as a
    dictator sounds harsh but I think the nature
    of the US economy speaks to that. When a
    central government takes over major industries,
    threatens to exercise control over state-run
    institutions like community colleges, dictates
    to insurers in a way that drives up healthcare
    costs, has more “czars” than any other president,
    we are heading in the direction of autocracy.
    While Bush/Cheney may have STARTED certain
    things, their traditions (Iraq, Afghanistan,
    Sec’y Gates, Chairman Ben) are well intact
    under Obama. If it’s any consolation, I
    think the US has been heading towards
    autocracy since Bush the First and can hardly
    find a dime’s worth of difference even under
    Clinton and Obama. More later …

  371. mean dovey cooledge October 7, 2010 at 9:03 pm #

    BRAVO, friend. You laid it out beautifully.

  372. San Jose Mom 51 October 7, 2010 at 9:32 pm #

    Hi Turkle,
    Yes, I’m an isolationist. I’d send my kid to be in the coast guard in coastal waters, I’d be OK with anything involved in preventing nukes or WMD’s being shipped or smuggled into the U.S.
    But I wouldn’t send him to Mexico, Somalia, or anywhere in the middle east. Countries hate the U.S. for not minding our own business. Mexico isn’t ruled by an evil despot. They have the government they deserve. Would you go to Mexico with a big gun and shoot the bad guys? I wouldn’t.
    The U.S. should quit spending so much money on the military. I’d rather the money was spent on
    education and healthcare.

  373. BeantownBill October 8, 2010 at 12:13 am #

    You know – power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
    Add to the mix that those in power first want to keep their power, and second, to increase it as much as possible, and you get all sovereign governments becoming more and more controlling over time. Until there is a revolution. This cycle is just human nature.
    Governments by their very nature are immoral because nobody has the right to tell people what to do if they aren’t harming others. Taxes are immoral because no person or organization has the right to take people’s money. Democracy is immoral because voting doesn’t satisfy the wishes of up to 49% of the people.
    Therefore, the best government is no government. But wait! Because of the frailties of human nature, some controls and central authority to enforce those controls are needed. So reality intervenes. Trying to be as close to perfect as we can be is our best option. Thus we can say that the best government is the least government. The further we get away from this idea, the more dysfunctional the society. We see that here today.
    I would have been an anarchist if I didn’t get older and wiser. Our American society has existed over 200 years. In today’s environment of very rapid change, 200 years is a very long time. We need to tear down the existing structure and rebuild it to reflect the present reality. How we can do that is another topic for discussion. Wasn’t it Mao who said there should be revolutions every 20 years or so to foster new ideas and refresh the society?

  374. asoka October 8, 2010 at 12:23 am #

    E said: “If it’s any consolation, I
    think the US has been heading towards
    autocracy since Bush the First and can hardly
    find a dime’s worth of difference even under
    Clinton and Obama.”
    Unfortunately for you, E., reality once again reared its ugly head.
    The banks wanted a bill making out-of-state notarizations more easily recognized. The Republicans wanted it. The Democrats wanted it. It would protect the banks and make it easily to foreclose on people’s houses.
    President Barack Obama will not sign the bill.
    No difference, E., between Bush and Obama?
    When did Bush ever use a pocket veto to oppose something the banks wanted and Republicans wanted and the Democrats wanted?
    When did Bush ever use a veto because consumer advocates issued a warning?
    When did Bush ever oppose the banks, and favor the people, to oppose banks sending homes into foreclosure?
    E., you are simply wrong that there is not a “dime’s worth of difference”

  375. Jeoff October 8, 2010 at 2:44 am #

    I just wanted to check in as to how your travels,
    or travails, on the light rail from Seattle to
    the airport went after all.
    I hope the confusing fare payment/check-in
    system didn’t detour you unduly as the ride
    is pretty fast, and trust the long walk to
    the airport terminal didn’t sour your day.
    Did you take the University St. station,
    or did you plough into the seamier Pioneer Street
    station district, and if so, I can only imagine
    the Skid Row (if memory serves me, the original
    Skid Road ran through Pioneer Square ) jeremiad
    of bottle-brandishing derelicts, and “Come to Jesus” graffiti. A symbol of our times!
    Best Wishes,

  376. eightm October 8, 2010 at 4:53 am #

    We need large scale projects: trillions of skyscrapers worldwide, thousands of transatlantic and pacific bridges making traveling of millions of 200 miles per hours cars across oceans possible, along with high speed trains across the pacific and atlantic connecting continents, trillions of huge ships connecting continents at very high speeds, etc. These are all new complex engineering and technical endeavors, millions of jobs are produced. We need millions of airports with trillions of jet airplanes connecting the world, then we need to rapidly colonize the solar system, all of its planets with huge, large scale private and government corporations, genetically engineering and changing entire planetary environments on Venus and Mars and Mercury, etc. And also on those planets we need to have trillions of skyscrapers, atomic energy power, airports, trillions of cars, thousand miles wide particle accelerators, etc.
    And from there the entire galaxy and so on.
    But the most we can muster is laying off millions of people because some idiotic cave man ideology thinks they are “lazy” and “don’t work hard enough” and some rich minority has to have billions of dollars in profits just to play the stock market poker game, or fight insane wars in Afghanistan.
    Aside from picking on each other, and beating up each other in an infinite array of political fights, everyone against everyone else, everyone criticizing everyone else, all these old greens that want to go back to the dark ages, afraid of everything when we now have such a huge amount of wealth and excess capacity and technology and manpower waiting to be discharged into large scale projects, planetary and solar system size projects.

  377. asoka October 8, 2010 at 6:59 am #

    At least Norway has the guts to face up to China and stand up for human rights, instead of cowering because China is a cheap labor pool and rising power.
    I only wish Obama would take a strong stand for human rights in China… and get our troops out of Colombia, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. and stop bombing human beings in Pakistan.

    Thorbjoern Jagland, the Norwegian Nobel Committee chairman, said Liu Xiaobo (LEE-o SHAo-boh) was a symbol for the fight for human rights in China and the government should expect that its policies face scrutiny.
    “China has become a big power in economic terms as well as political terms, and it is normal that big powers should be under criticism,” Jagland said.
    Unlike some in China’s highly fractured and persecuted dissident community, the 54-year-old Liu has been an ardent advocate for peaceful, gradual political change, rather than a violent confrontation with the government.

  378. lbendet October 8, 2010 at 8:06 am #

    I think they’re all (presidents) part of a continuum. Global military and financial dominance. Unfortunately, the neoliberalism they all embrace doesn’t perform and our economy is tanking. It would probably take a few years to set this right and a complete break with how we do business, so you know that’s not going to happen. As JHK said this week, the banks and mortgage situation is a complete disaster.
    And speaking of banks, I’ve mentioned twice this week about Reagan putting the troubled S&Ls under receiverships yet I never hear it being referenced by anyone from a historical perspective and nobody on this blog has discussed it either.
    Obama made the choice to go with the Clintonistas, another big disappointment for me.
    I always considered myself an independent, but since “W” I went more sharply to the left, looking for balance and finding it’s more like a duopoly and the balkanization of this country is getting greater.

  379. myrtlemay October 8, 2010 at 8:21 am #

    Thank you, SJ Mom. You know, all we hear on this blog is population control this, population control that. Hence, more gays = less irritating idiots being reproduced (read MIKA) on this freaking planet. BTW, can’t wait to try your posted recipe!

  380. progressorconserve October 8, 2010 at 9:05 am #

    Agreed, Myrtle
    Our problem as a culture with homosexuality comes straight out of the “kill them” “stone them” “scourge them” laws of the Old Testament.
    This reflects the revulsion of a wandering hungry Hebrew people living on the edge (probably) of hunger – when they encounter a more prosperous people – for example Sodom and Gomorrah.
    I have often wondered if homosexuality becomes more prevalent in civilized and prosperous cultures.
    From my observations in some mammal species (dogs for example) you will see LOTS of “homosexual” behavior among young males IF the group is well fed. If they are underfed (non-prosperous??) those same male dogs will fight instead of *play.*
    I don’t know what this might mean – just throwing an idea into the discussion.

  381. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 9:33 am #

    Asoka, thanks for the reminder about October 10. I had forgotten about it…I read about it on Lynn Schwadchuk’s site. Good stuff! I hope everyone at CFN gets out and does something, any small thing for the environment. Start your compost pile!

  382. mika. October 8, 2010 at 9:34 am #

    Our problem as a culture with homosexuality comes straight out of the “kill them” “stone them” “scourge them” laws of the Old Testament.
    There’s a lot of wisdom in the TaNakh, and even though I’m a strident anti-theist, I do recognize this wisdom. As it concerns faggots, being psychologically sensitive I intuitively understand the psychological defect in the mind of faggots and where this psychological defect leads culturally. The greater the incident of faggots with political power in a particular population, the greater the incident of corruption in the general culture. This has great implications for general health of society. And playing the UN dictated “politically correct” game, is a game for fools and idiots.

  383. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 9:43 am #

    Oh well, except for the clitoridectomies. (sp?)

  384. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 9:53 am #

    “Cool story bro.”

  385. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:02 am #

    Excellent post, Bill. One comment that I think needs correcting:
    “Therefore, the best government is no government. But wait! Because of the frailties of human nature, some controls and central authority to enforce those controls are needed. So reality intervenes.”
    It’s not the need for internal control and enforcement of law and justice that gives birth to a central authority, it is external threats and the perceived need to protect oneself thru a strong central authority (strong gov/strong army) against these external threats that leads to central control.
    This is an important point to understand, because it is this dynamic and those that understand how to manipulate this dynamic, that has led us to our present sorry predicament.

  386. progressorconserve October 8, 2010 at 10:05 am #

    Second request from a second poster.
    Stop using the word “faggot.”

  387. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:09 am #


  388. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 10:20 am #

    P.S. Unless this is some sort of satiric rant a al Jonathan Swift, you have crossed the sicko threshold.

  389. progressorconserve October 8, 2010 at 10:21 am #

    It’s divisive and contributes nothing to the discussion.
    All it shows is your repetitious disdain (or fear?? for certain types of sexual activity.
    And I’m straight.
    You’ve got a lot of effort invested in your MIKA screenname. Even though I almost never agree with you – you make me think.
    And it would be unfortunate if your screenname were banned.

  390. asoka October 8, 2010 at 10:23 am #

    mila59, same message I sent to ProgressorConserve applies: Islam is not monolithic. Some Muslims countries have outlawed the practice of female circumcision and are appalled by it. They consider it barbaric.
    Other Muslim countries still have the practice, like we still have male circumcision … and I was a victim.
    You can’t blame the religion Islam or the religion Judaism or the religion Christianity. It comes more from tribal, social, tradition, customs, etc. Religion is mixed in but is not the main factor. Otherwise it would be universally practiced in all Muslim countries.

  391. asoka October 8, 2010 at 10:25 am #

    Third request from third poster.
    Please stop using the word fag**t.

  392. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 10:26 am #

    Sorry. That was supposed to say “a la Jonathan Swift…”

  393. mila59 October 8, 2010 at 10:27 am #

    It makes you sound like a dumb shit, actually.

  394. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:42 am #

    Banned? For calling faggots, faggots? That’s kind of stupid. Anyway, I don’t see any reason to stop using words. Faggots is a good word. I like it. I will keep using it. Though, it is interesting that some here display such an irrational fear of the word faggots, but lack the rational fear of the real specimens.

  395. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:58 am #

    That’s fine. I don’t have any hangups about what other people think of me. I’ll say what I want to say, what needs to be said, when I want to say it. If that makes your PC trained bird brain squirm uncomfortably, so much the better.

  396. Cash October 8, 2010 at 11:01 am #

    The political “system” didn’t ask or force anybody to do anything. People did. These political systems are human created and human run, they were not imposed by extraterrestrials. They exist because people actively co-operate and allow them to exist. When people stop co-operating the system stops existing.
    Stalin was responsible for the killing of enormous numbers of fellow Soviets but he didn’t do the killing himself so he’s not the only one responsible. Same goes for other mass killers like Mao, Hitler, Hirohito and Pol Pot and their millions of followers, collaborators, enablers.
    Talk about reality: the reality is that the pig sty on Wall Street still exists, very little has changed and it’s business as usual. Very little has changed at the banks, they are still wildly out of control with their foreclosures an utter debacle. Bernanke is still following time tested and proven policies of failure and disaster of the past two decades.
    Why is this? After all Democrats control the House and Senate and the Presidency. They’re supposed to be on the side of the little guy right?
    It didn’t have to be this way. Why wasn’t Bernanke shown the door or pressured to quit and why weren’t people at the Fed brought to heel? As for Wall Street, here’s a question: why is it still legal to buy insurance against bond default if you don’t own the bond? According to a recent news report China will allow credit default swaps as long as you own the underlying risk. Why wasn’t the same done in the US? If it was I haven’t heard of it.
    Or you can declare financial martial law given the extent of the mess and arrest top management of Wall Street firms and banks, keep them locked up until legal cases can be made against them (this was the idea of a fellow poster several months ago) and make damn sure they and their kind are never again allowed to run amok. Instil a climate of extreme fear among the con men such that they know if they so much as fart in the wrong direction they’ll be sharing concrete and steel living quarters with tattooed and Hep C infected lifers with nothing to lose.
    Not a dime’s worth of difference. Maybe for different reasons than E but still not a dime’s worth of difference.

  397. progressorconserve October 8, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    A burning bundle of sticks.
    You, MIKA, have *finally??* demonstrated yourself to be a fearful jackass.
    And Tripp, I think you’re on to something.
    Pretty sure Satan (satin) has nothing to do with it.

  398. trippticket October 8, 2010 at 12:28 pm #

    I didn’t mean you, PoC. I was just begging the snake-handlers not to show up for this one;)
    Though, now that you mention it, I think satin might have more to do with it than Satan!

  399. trippticket October 8, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    Hey, wait! You’re not getting off that easy! Where have you been, my dear?

  400. BeantownBill October 8, 2010 at 1:24 pm #

    “Talk about reality: the reality is that the pig sty on Wall Street still exists, very little has changed and it’s business as usual. Very little has changed at the banks, they are still wildly out of control with their foreclosures an utter debacle. Bernanke is still following time tested and proven policies of failure and disaster of the past two decades.
    Why is this? After all Democrats control the House and Senate and the Presidency. They’re supposed to be on the side of the little guy right?”
    Because you don’t have $50 million (I think) or whatever the figure is to bribe enough congressmen to make the decisions you want.
    What incentive, other than any moral probity I may have, is there for me to follow the laws of this country if even our government’s elected officials don’t?
    Before any reforms can be made, all the bastards who did dirty in the financial markets must be mprisoned – every one.

  401. mika. October 8, 2010 at 1:56 pm #

    C’mon, PC. If I did not think faggots are extremely harmful to society, I would not bother. As it is, you know I will not let up. I never do.

  402. San Jose Mom 51 October 8, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    I’m just going to ignore you-know-who, he’s fairly smart, but unfortunately, from the standpoint of emotional maturity, we’re dealing with a six-year-old. Assuming he’s in his twenties, he’s really stuck. Poor guy.

  403. mika. October 8, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    You know it’s not very polite to talk about people behind their back. Also shows a lack of maturity, almost that of a teenybopper, if you ask me.

  404. LewisLucanBooks October 8, 2010 at 5:16 pm #

    We’ll all turn our backs on you. Give you a little time out.
    Oh, and that’s Mr. Faggot, to you 😀
    (OK, guys and gals. This jerk THRIVES on response. No breaking ranks. Just ignore him. He’ll move along somewhere else where he can stir up the peeps.)

  405. ctemple October 8, 2010 at 6:10 pm #

    At this point, I think I’d be satisfied just if the dickweeds who voted for the TARP bailout all got voted out of congress.
    It would be a nice start.

  406. mika. October 8, 2010 at 6:11 pm #

    Yes asoka, you fscking lowlife pederast, we must all turn a blind eye to all psychological perversions and deviancy, because like a bunch of pavlovian dogs we’ve all been trained to acquiesce to pretty much everything, including a stinking jihadi dick in the ass, both literally and figuratively.

  407. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 7:07 pm #

    Mika, you are running across the knee-jerk reaction of gutless libtard posers who key off of certain words. The don’t relate to concepts just to labels.

  408. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 7:14 pm #

    I will pay attention to you Mika. You have a minimum of guts which I do respect. The gutless pc posers here are largely pacificist capitulators and will be shoveling shit behind the pig sty for new masters if their NWO scenario develops. POC has guts though. I think he is offended by the crudeness and vituperativeness of your language. I have found you like Eleutherio, Gogreenordi,sometimes Q and BeanTownBill, to be a very hostile mean-spirited fellow who has little to contribute other than a display of his pychopathology and puerile miscreancy.

  409. mika. October 8, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    Damon Vrabel is another person that gets it:

  410. mika. October 8, 2010 at 7:47 pm #

    I gave you good advice. Advice, which at the time because of your ego you were not prepared to accept, and you took it for hostility. If I were truly hostile, I would have told you what you wanted to hear, to go “all in”. I hope that one day you’ll come to appreciate the difference.

  411. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 8:15 pm #

    You made some good points, but it still came across as negative. I also trade on a shorter time period than which you had in mind. Looks like NFLX is tailing off, but Apple still has a good run ahead of it. The fed’s QE and traders expectation of it have greatly boosted the shares of FCX, SCCO, VALE etc over the past week especially.

  412. mika. October 8, 2010 at 8:26 pm #

    There are no traders. There are only insiders and outsiders and brainwashed people who believe they are traders.

  413. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 9:14 pm #

    Again you are being paranoid and negative. I sold 90 shares of apple today in the $293 to $294 range which I bought a couple weeks ago around $284/share which leads to revenues of about 90 shares x $9/share = $810. Deducting about $50 for commissions (4 buys and 4 sales for the 4 lots involved and noting each commision was about $6/trade)still nets me about $750 which is not bad for very little work. You just have a “You can’t win.” mentality. Much as it doesn’t fit your mentality I win quite often. My dad also gets royalties from books he writes. Some people are neither that much on the inside or that much on the outside. They are more in the middle. There are a lot of shades of gray out there. People buy into and benefit from the systems to varying degrees.

  414. mika. October 8, 2010 at 9:32 pm #

    You just have a “You can’t win.” mentality.
    Actually, it’s a “you can’t lose” mentality. I understand what is fake managed reality and what is real genuine reality. You’re a fish swimming in front of an angler fish, completely blinded by its light and the darkness.

  415. mika. October 8, 2010 at 9:36 pm #

    ..^Only I understand what is fake..

  416. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 9:43 pm #

    I think you exaggerate how tightly controlled and manipulated all the details of market gyrations are and how opposed TPTB are to folks getting some crumbs. There are a lot of people with assets in the $100,000 to $10 million range who take advantage of the sytems, live fairly well, and buy into it to varying degrees. In other words folks in the professional and middling mercantile classes are still doing alright. Should these groups be dispossed you are likely to see more significant disaffection. The American Revolution came into play largely due to the limitations to the advancement and enrichment of the MA mercantile class as well as secessionist rabble rousing by firebrands, and philosophers of the French liberal tradition.
    In other words the priviledged, well-born, clever, moderately well-connected, and only somewhat compliant are still allowed to win to a fair degree. There are still opportunities for success and advancement. A lot of folks from my high school have done quite well (in medicine, finance etc). Yes, they came from fairly well to do, WASP suburban families. What I am saying is, you are paranoid and unrealistic. There is still room to maneuver to better positions without dropping out of society or whatever you are advocating in your defeatist conspiracy-theorizing way.

  417. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:16 pm #

    You’re being deliberately herded to the casino gulag. It’s a trap, both financial and psychological, from which you will not recover. But I’m the paranoid, advocating a defeatist conspiracy theory, so whatever. Enjoy your winnings.

  418. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 10:30 pm #

    Again, you have a can’t win mentality. I don’t stick around for long. I come in, take a bit, head out, and try again. You live in a world where no one can ever get anywhere. Why do you even bother to live when life is so hopeless and pointless?

  419. mika. October 8, 2010 at 10:38 pm #

    These people engineered the death of hundreds of millions thru two world wars and countless other wars. They engineered mass death thru famine, they engineered mass death thru the gassing and burning of people in ovens, they engineered mass death by incinerating people with atomic weapons, they engineered mass death by spaying people with genetic weapons like agent orange, and on and on, all so they can make a buck. If you think they give a shit about your WASP suburban families, you’re completely delusional.

  420. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 10:47 pm #

    Note, that I sold up around $293 to $294 today.
    There is a lot of information available through that sinister force, the MSM, that can be used to gain insight into various market etc behavior.
    This call behavior indicates that Apple’s top is in the $290 to $300 range. Yes, the article is a little dated, being printed on 9 22 2010, but as these are October calls they are most likely still relevant and an indication of a top for Apple. Still, as time has progressed about 3 weeks and these calls are expiring, and apple has built a stronger base in the $280’s and earnings prospects for a variety of companies look good this quarter, QE is expected, and a general bullish uptrend in the markets appears likely to continue for the next couple of years, this top is softening and Apple is sure to pass over $300/share by the time it reports earnings (above expectations most likely) on the 10 21st or 22nd.
    Am hoping to pick up some more at a dip back into the mid $280’s/share.
    Stocks at New Highs: Apple Inc., Baidu, and Kraft Foods
    September’s been a strong month for the market
    by Sarah Wasserman (swasserman@sir-inc.com) 9/22/2010 11:10 AM
    However, option players seemed skeptical of AAPL on Tuesday, with the October 290 call and October 300 call each seeing volume of roughly 30,000 contracts change hands. The bulk of these contracts crossed the tape at the bid price, revealing they were likely sold, and open interest at each of these strikes increased substantially overnight. In other words, it seems that some option players are calling a top to AAPL’s rally.
    In fact, with peak call open interest of 36,755 calls at the October 300 strike, and another substantial accumulation of 28,834 contracts at the October 290 call, AAPL could soon run into options-related resistance. Furthermore, the shares’ current Relative Strength Index (RSI) is perched at an “overbought” 78. This lofty reading indicates that the shares may be due for a pullback in the near future.
    This is not devoid of content, either, E-Loser-Turdio.

  421. treebeardsuncle October 8, 2010 at 10:51 pm #

    I don’t think they care. I just don’t think the small movements of the market, or the details of individual people’s behavior at home and school etc, are that tightly orchestrated. Not every little swing in the market or local disaster is part of some grand conspiracy. There are still opportunities.

  422. Ang October 8, 2010 at 10:52 pm #

    Actually, according to the anthropology class I took in college, in primitive societies, homosexuality was socially acceptable, and became more prevalent in times of scarcity. Helped to keep the birthrate down when there weren’t enough resources.
    (Now that was in the mid 80’s, so I don’t know if this is still the current belief.)
    Makes sense to me.

  423. WhoWho October 8, 2010 at 11:51 pm #

    Okay, I’ll be the turd in the punchbowl here. What the hell was this column about, anyway? Yeah, Mr. Kunstler, we know all about you, you, you. For all I know, you, you, you might be right about what’s coming and why.
    But you, you, you really ought to feel compelled to have a cogent and logical case to make, complete with evidence, as opposed to showing us that you, you, you are pissed off.
    Tell me something I need to know.

  424. LewisLucanBooks October 9, 2010 at 1:40 am #

    Read his book “The Long Emergency”. Amazon has it, or your library has or can get it for you. Read back through his old blog posts. Or just hang out til it all falls into place.
    Or, read Michael Greer’s “The Long Descent.” Or check out his http://www.archdruid.blogspot.com or for real hands on stuff, sign up for his site http://www.greenwizrds.org . Both those places are moderated, by the way, and you won’t see all the nonsense you see here 🙂 .
    Making it through (maybe) The Long Emergency takes a bit of work and thought.

  425. eightm October 9, 2010 at 6:52 am #

    The US from 1950 to 1975 had a huge domestic consumption market with less than 200 million consumers, they manufactured and produced and sold almost totally internally. Now is that so hard to do for any other country on earth ? Why is it so hard to do ? Because the US has a cultural affinity for buying, consuming, ever changing situations (hire fire and move culture) , suburbs with large wood homes where you can put all the stuff you buy, and home improvements market like LOWES or HOME DEPOT which is non existant even in the richest countries like Switzerland or Norway because they don’t have the huge suburb, McMansion car centric organization, they all have small tight roads, small mostly brick houses – apartments where you can’t put much stuff in and you can’t modify them alot like with wood, etc. Also very important, most of the world salary is between 500 to 1,500 dollars a month, not much consuming you can do with that, the US goes from 1,000 to 15,000 dollars a month, a huge amount of arbitrary crap can be bought by people in the US and so they do. The US has much higher salaries (albeit not stable, hire – fire anytime for any reason) most of the world has crap salaries, albeit much more stable.
    But the rest of the world all wants to export, and no one wants to consume, only the US must – is forced to consume. But this excess productive capacity must be discharged somehow, the US is essentially broke now, very hard to keep on buying, so China and others will have to buy all the stuff they make,and they will. There is no way millions of workers can keep on producing only for the US suburbs, that era is over.
    The US must start very large scale projects, man trips to Mars, skyscrapers, 100 mile wide particle accelerators, high class – high tech mega projects by public – private companies that hire in the millions. The small inventor in the garage won’t create those millions of jobs needed, the small company myth won’t work anymore. And all this talk of innovation and services is so stupid, most innovations and services have been invented, now you need to decide how to use all the huge wealth, technology, excess capacity and manpower in order to hire those millions of workers worldwide.
    And we need free salaries (2,000 dollars a month) cheap rents (200 dollars a month , 2 bedroom house – high quality) , free health care and then use people for large scale serious projects and not make them fight over the basics, which, as a society we can easily give to everyone.

  426. trippticket October 9, 2010 at 11:58 am #

    “Makes sense to me.”
    Makes sense to me too, but doesn’t agree with PoC’s observations of dogs. Different we are for sure, but I would think that our behavior would be similar evolutionarily. I mean they’re the same selection pressures on the same kind of animal.
    I would particularly agree with the idea that homosexuality flourishes in situations of gender inequality, both in numbers, and social standing. Like modern China with its serious shortage of girls. Imagine being scared of an ecologically-wasted, grossly over-populated country full of manginas, that depend on the first-world middle class-cum-peasantry for their well-being! Same goes for the Islamo-malted milk sheiks. If they’re going to take over the world there’s no time like the present!

  427. trippticket October 9, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    Tell me how your vision differs from state slavery.

  428. eightm October 9, 2010 at 12:11 pm #

    We are all always a slave to someone or something or some idea, etc. Most in the US are slaves to the corporation dictatorship, they can’t go home on time because they would be considered “lazy”, etc. Most people are terrified of losing their jobs, knowing that there are none, or if there are, they pay less than 1/2 their present salary without health care. We are already slaves to so many crappy power structure forces: but at least with trillions of rockets to Mars, we would all be working for the common good, for the future, for humanity, for a goal, a higher goal than the reward of some egotistical capitalist who thinks he deserves “more” becasue everyone else is a slob.
    We need to stop fighting between each other, we need to end this idea that everyone can chose their own crappy “alternative” lesbo – queer cristian fundamentalist – tree hugger, etc. life style, we need strong central governments and corporations that have huge projects, mega projects, and free health, salaries and homes to all, and a huge scientific community that is headed towards the future and not fighting each other over queers and niggers and latinos and all such crap.

  429. mika. October 9, 2010 at 1:06 pm #

    We need to..
    No, we don’t.
    We need awareness and a real understanding of history. Crappy power structures can be dismantled. We can go back to before the Age Of Kings and the Age Of War. The Judges of Israel understood the pitfalls of Egypt and the slavey that is “civilization”. But the Philistines (plishtim = sea invaders) were pressing in on Israel, and Israel needed a strong army. They got their army. They deafeated the Philistines. But that was the death of Israel.

  430. trippticket October 9, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

    Thanks. Not exactly the future I see.

  431. WhoWho October 9, 2010 at 4:38 pm #

    Look, I’ve been pessimistic on the economy and markets since late 1999. Called the end of the Internet bubble, and the real estate bubble. On the upside, I was early on the good economy and markets of the ’90s, and on running a federal surplus.
    Today, I am *very* pessimistic. I think we’re in a depression, and that the American standard of living is going to take a body blow in the next few years, as state and local governments go bust and begin eliminating essential services.
    My complaint with this site is that Kunstler seems to have a large followership of people who are satisfied to come here and listen to him fart. I’ve had him recommended to me by a bunch of people, but all I’ve seen when I come here is an exposed nerve ending who pours out egotism and self-righteousness, but never bothers to back it up with real facts and analysis.
    Maybe he did that once upon a time in some book he wrote, but that’s yesterday’s news. Mr. K, they say you’re good, but what have you done for me today? I’m just not seeing anything here, and that disappoints me.

  432. asoka October 9, 2010 at 7:58 pm #

    WhoWho said: Today, I am *very* pessimistic. I think we’re in a depression…”
    WhoWho then said: “…never bothers to back it up with real facts and analysis.”
    Here are some facts WhoWho:
    This CFN site is populated by various “independents,” ex-Bush Republicans, Bush Republicans, Libertarians, capital-C-Conservatives, and a few Progressives. They like to say government should shrink and they like to criticize Obama as a “tyrant” “socialist” etc.
    Well, here are some facts that should warm all those “anti-government” hearts, but they will never say anything that could be interpreted as pro-Obama. So, they are hypocrites because Friday’s job numbers go along with their political philosophy of small government.
    Private businesses added 64,000 jobs, a continuation of steady private employment growth. Government agencies cut 159,000 jobs
    I have yet to hear a single small-government advocate say Friday’s news about the shrinking of the government was a good thing. They like to bitch about “big government” but when government shrinks they say it is bad economic news and blame Obama. They are hypocrites.

  433. BeantownBill October 9, 2010 at 8:57 pm #

    Ultimately, I believe everything will work out ok in the long run. But we have serious economic problems today. I take statistics given out by the government with a grain of salt. Much of the 159,000 jobs cut were temporary census workers. Earlier in the year, when they were hired, some people (you included, I think) said, “Look, more jobs were added; this is a good thing.” If you did say that was good,you now have to say the government shedding those same jobs is bad. It can’t be good on both ends. A more accurate way to look at government employment is to consider census hiring and firing a wash,and compare the employment figures just before and just after the census.
    Also, no one appears to know the real number of U.S. unemployment because the figures do not count those people whose benefits have run out; they also don’t count people who used to have professional-level jobs, and who now are working in menial jobs for a lot less money (the underemployed).
    20 years ago these figures were included in the unemployment figures, so comparing today’s figures to those in the past is comparing apples to oranges. To people who count everyone, unemployment seems to be in the 17-21% range.
    If these figures are true, we are in a depression already.
    The U.S. population of elegible workers increases steadily. Economists say that to accomodate these new workers we need to add 400,000 jobs per month. While adding 64,000 jobs is positive, it is simultaneously negative as well. 336,000 became eligible to work and could not find employment. If these figures hold steady, this means we are losing ground every month.
    I don’t have a political agenda for this post. I’m just asking you to consider a different interpretation, one that leads to a not-so-good employment picture.

  434. asoka October 9, 2010 at 9:24 pm #

    beantownbill, I am in favor of government being an employer. You say: “Much of the 159,000 jobs cut were temporary census workers.” It was about half of the job cuts, so the other half were “shrinking government” “cutting government spending” etc. which Republican Tea Party Conservatives and Libertarians all say they favor. Yet no praise ever leaves their lips to say Obama is reigning in government spending and shrinking government.

  435. asoka October 9, 2010 at 9:44 pm #

    Yet no praise ever leaves their lips to say Obama is reining in government spending and shrinking government.

  436. Planetwoman October 9, 2010 at 10:01 pm #

    James, Have read several of your books and heard you last night in Portland. Regarding women in your two fiction books: never mind the “glass ceiling”. Where were the women doctors, dentists, carpenters, etc. I know? I for instance, can wield a hammer. use a saw and actually build something but my male friend would have trouble.
    Then the only women who have real businesses going in your books are whores. This is rhetorical but what kind of women have you known?
    And why would any woman who is not menstruating wear a long skirt? What a totally impractical garment otherwise. Very difficult to work in.
    Still, I will read others of your books; liked how you read your own; and appreciate your humour and trash talk.
    Why your antipathy toward Krugman? Folks can comprehend the economics of Krugman and Reich, and use your information as well. It is a matter of timing and transition.

  437. BeantownBill October 9, 2010 at 11:16 pm #

    Still, now we have another 159,000 people looking for work. Add this to the 336,000 newly entering the workforce, and we have another 1/2 million unemployed. Although I have some issues with the size of our government, this wasn’t the point of my post. My point is simply that our employment situation is getting worse, not better. I am not blaming Obama for this, that would be so unfair for obvious reasons. There are some necessary actions, however, that aren’t being taken, and we need to get the persons who have the power to do so. Blaming is a waste of time and energy.

  438. asoka October 9, 2010 at 11:29 pm #

    beantown said: “My point is simply that our employment situation is getting worse, not better.”
    I do not agree with your point and I have hard data to suggest things are getting better related to private sector employment:
    The number of jobs in the private sector as of December 2008 (as Bush was preparing to leave office) was 111,767,000.
    When Bush took office in January 2001 that number was 111,634,000.
    Now check my math…111,767,000 minus 111,634,000 equals only 133,000 jobs.
    During the entire eight years of the Bush administration they only managed to create a measely 133,000 private-sector jobs.
    This past month there were 107,970,000 private-sector jobs. In January 2010 that number was 107,123,000.
    Again, check my math: 107,970,000 minus 107,123,000 equals 847,000 private-sector jobs.

  439. asoka October 9, 2010 at 11:31 pm #

    SOURCE: The numbers come from Bureau of Labor Statistics, the private sector numbers generated under both Bush and Obama.

  440. BeantownBill October 9, 2010 at 11:43 pm #

    Yes, but I’m not saying who was responsible or who was doing a better job. Using the figures you provide, I see 847,000 more jobs created in the same time period 3.5 million more people entered the workforce. Employment is going backwards and Americans as a group are getting more poor. I will grant you Obama may be doing a better job than Bush did, but comparing anyone to Bush makes them look good.

  441. trippticket October 10, 2010 at 8:25 am #

    If anyone is checking in this morning, and doesn’t feel like a “my stats are more accurate than your stats” jousting contest, I had a funny dream last night I’d like to relate.
    In my dream I fell asleep in the orchard and had a chat with god. And I asked god why there was so much hatred toward the purple sticky punch.
    And god said, “Ha! I put Cannabis on the planet exclusively for the enjoyment of humans (and maybe the few other animals that tag along with you guys, like rats, they like it too), but my followers have managed to muck up just about everything I did for your happiness.”
    “Like nudity?” I asked.
    “Yes, they claim they ate an apple and became “enlightened” about their nudity, and henceforth adopted modesty as a blanket policy! Of course you’re a sharp fellow, Tripp, you see the cascade of misery that caused, from the resource acquisition to make trousers and shoes, to the sweat shop labor now forced upon “lesser” peoples, to the embarrassment that is the Oregon Ducks rotating game day wardrobe.”
    “Indeed, sir, they are the laughing stock of the NCAA, with their diamond plated shoulder pads. But what about the apple itself? Another demonized plant?! What have they got against plants?? There are plenty of real enemies to be dealt with.”
    “Oh yeah, “the tree of knowledge” they call it. Tree of retardation is more like it. It’s an apple for jeebus sake. (That was my son’s real name, btw, jeebus, in lower case like e.e. cummings, not Hey-Zeus, like some wetback (sic). I thought the apple was a real homerun.”
    “Why wouldn’t you!” I said.
    “Well, Tripp, I’ve got to run. Still lots of misrepresentations on my behalf to clear up. You understand.”
    “I do, sir. Thank you for your time.”
    “Hey, son. I’m glad you permaculturalists are doing what you’re doing. It’s about time. And feel free to cheef all you want.”
    “I’ll get right on that, sir.”
    “Oh, one more thing, tell 8M to ditch that Darth Vader view of the future of his. I sent him back in time with the knowledge he has so that he could stop that from happening, not to promote it. Damn.”

  442. lbendet October 10, 2010 at 9:28 am #

    Love it, Tripp
    Thanks for the laugh before I have to go to work. Much appreciated.

  443. San Jose Mom 51 October 10, 2010 at 11:37 am #

    Thank you jeebus!

  444. eightm October 10, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    Yeah, we are all waiting for the “small companies” to create millions of jobs, no one on earth knows or can imagine or ever talks about WHAT EXACTLY AND WHAT ON EARTH IN WHAT SECTOR, WHAT KIND OF ACTIVITY FOR 8 HOURS A DAY, EXACTLY WHAT KIND OF PHYSICAL AND INFORMATIONAL MANIPULATIONS THESE MILLIONS OF WORKERS ARE SUPPOSED TO PERFROM AND AT WHAT PAY FOR 8 HOURS A DAY, but they all repeat, like broken records, like ROBOTS who never really think of what exactly they are saying, “we need tax cuts to small businesses, we need small companies that can GROW, we need startups, we need the genius in the garage that will invent, from his own mind, another IBM (that by the way only has 400,000 workers, not even they reach the millions needed worldwide), we need innovation (never saying exactly what has to be new, or what on earth has to change, etc.) or services (maybe health insurance companies, subprtime loans, etc. ?)”
    All of this BS will never create millions of jobs needd worldwide: only very large scale, mega projects, like man trips to mars, 100 mile wide accelerators, trillions of skyscrapers on Venus, huge projects that activate huge manpower and engineering and technology, etc.
    But everyone is so retarded, stupid, idiotic, like even obama (clown), instead of huge BUS systems, teleworking systems, free salaries, cheap houses for rent, etc. real things that create real work, he just talks about “small companies”, what a cock: WE NEED HUGE GOVERNMENT – PRIVATE COMPANIES AND PROJECTS THAT HIRE MILLIONS, not tax cuts for the small fries.

  445. asoka October 10, 2010 at 1:53 pm #

    Tripp said: “If anyone is checking in this morning, and doesn’t feel like a “my stats are more accurate than your stats” jousting contest”
    No more stats for you, Tripp.
    Thanks again for the reading recommendations.
    I am going to read those two books (Gaia’s Garden and Teeming with Microbes) and find some land to practice permaculture on.
    What do you think could be done with a 15′ by 40′ “backyard” that already has an apple tree? Will those books give me the ideas I need to create a permacultural experiment in 600 square feet?

  446. mika. October 10, 2010 at 3:15 pm #

    All of this BS will never create millions of jobs needd worldwide..
    You are approaching the problem completely wrong-headed.
    We don’t need to create millions of jobs. A one income family and a 20 hr/wk should be enough. What we need is to stop the gov mafia thieving thru taxation, thieving thru money printing and inflation, thieving thru mortgage inflation of housing prices, thieving thru corporate subsidies and regulations, thieving thru the siphoning of money from the local economy to a central oligarchy, thieving thru the forced use of corporate monopolies (urban planning that forces families to buy 3- 4 cars, buy petrol, buy insurance, and pay for the upkeep of million of miles of roads), thieving thru the corporate externalization and socialization of costs and the privatization of profits, thieving thru fake social mandates that are nothing more than another forced income stream for the corporate/gov mafia, thieving thru artificial price controls, and on and on.

  447. treebeardsuncle October 10, 2010 at 5:00 pm #

    That is so not going to happen, Mika. Either take advantage of the system, or leave the country. Are you an Israeli citizen?

  448. treebeardsuncle October 10, 2010 at 5:02 pm #

    This place has gotten boring. Am going to American Rennaissance.

  449. trippticket October 10, 2010 at 5:11 pm #


  450. mika. October 10, 2010 at 5:29 pm #

    That is so not going to happen, Mika.
    LOL. There you go again with the “no can do” attitude. 😀

  451. progressorconserve October 10, 2010 at 7:58 pm #

    I’ve know a lot of people who talk to God.
    You, sir, had a humorous conversation AND posted it on CFN for all to see.
    Great job (Job?)!
    And I’ve got to say that you and God are correct about cannibis, apple trees, and nudity, IMO.
    I will look forward with great interest to all future conversations (Conversations?).

  452. DeeJones October 10, 2010 at 9:52 pm #

    I haven’t read comments for a few days, they get kinda repetiious and frankly boring, but has anybody read this?
    Finance leaders fail to resolve currency dispute – http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2010-10-09-imf-meetings_N.htm?csp=24
    And i beleive int he FT recently there has been talk of changing the ‘reserve currency’ from the dollar to the E or something else.
    Will the $ start being printed on preforated rolls soon? And will it even be good for wiping your ass with?
    Well, I guess we will all find out pretty soon….

  453. treebeardsuncle October 11, 2010 at 1:21 am #

    Yeah, I saw that and am concerned that currency inflation may proceed with such speed and consistency that it will be difficult to find a good opening to get back into fcx and buy scco. Fcx is now up to $95/share or so, up about 4 points on Friday. (Had sold it around $90/share.) SCCO has come up well above the range it has been trading in for most of 010, which was $29 to $35/share. Now it is up to $38/share.

  454. ozone October 11, 2010 at 9:52 am #

    “…get back into fcx and buy scco”
    Fucks and sucko. Perfect; buy lots!

  455. treebeardsuncle October 11, 2010 at 2:43 pm #

    I didn’t understand what you meant by that remark. However, I will assume that it is consistent with the rest of the crew of pathetic dweebs around here and thus is just more evidence of your insignificance, irrelevance, and general mean-spiritedness.

  456. treebeardsuncle October 11, 2010 at 3:08 pm #

    I didn’t understand what you meant by that remark. However, I will assume that it is consistent with the rest of the crew of pathetic dweebs around here and thus is just more evidence of your insignificance, irrelevance, and general mean-spiritedness.

  457. Kiwi Nick October 12, 2010 at 12:11 am #

    I don’t have a problem with the innovation over the last 140 years. I have a problem with the lack of innovation over the last 9-10 years in the telecommunications sector.
    If the telephone companies had kept on going like they had over the last 100 years, things would have been a lot better.
    But somehow, they woke up one morning and said “we don’t want to do this any more”. Thereby forcing several hundred thousand suburban dwellers in Australia onto dialup.
    What’s worse is that some of the innovations we had have been lost. Things that used to work well a few years ago no longer work as they should. Years ago no caller in the US paid for 1-800 calls (in Australia, it was an untimed fee to call a 008 toll-free number, since changed to a completely “free” 1800 system), but now there’s a big argument brewing in Australia (link) about mobile companies charging per-minute to call a 1-800.
    There’s lots of other examples of things that don’t work as they did years ago (no, I’m not talking telegrams). There’s even lots of complaints that people can’t call (to or from) cellphones in various central city districts (imagine: no cellphone coverage in the street outside Grand Central NY).
    I’m not saying we’re screwed now, but if things go ***BANG***, either suddenly or slowly, that’s when we’ll get screwed.

  458. Kiwi Nick October 12, 2010 at 12:35 am #

    I disagree with some of what you say but …
    We need large scale projects
    is very spot on.
    It’s because Big Business don’t give two hoots about that any more. As an example, the $43b plan to lay fibre around Australia, because the stupid Mexican Telco Man won’t put enough broadband infrastructure into our cities (let alone rural areas). Some question the cost, I say let’s do it.
    Forget about Mars (or Afghanistan) for a minute, we need these projects:
    * Fix up the railways. No we don’t need 160km/h superspeed rail, we need to fix up the 8km/h patches. And we need dual tracks.
    * Fix up the schools (under action in Australia).
    * Fix up the police, courts, and jails so the thieving/drugged-up bastards can be locked up and let the rest of us alone.
    * Get some buses running (you can’t get trains running everywhere). Do it right and busloads of people will come (examples: routes 900/901/902/903/732/246 in Melbourne).
    * Fix up the half-working Government IT infrastructure – such as the Tax Office computer system.
    There’s plenty for Government to do.

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