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I’m obliged to file this blog before Robert Mueller’s office releases the name of the first winner in the Russian Election Meddling tribunal indictment lottery. Most of the betting is on Paul Manafort, the Swamp-creature-fixer-lobbyist-grifter who spent his summer vacation of 2016 managing Donald Trump’s election campaign.

Before that unfortunate summer internship, Manafort was just a shadier-than-average influence-peddler. It happened that many of his clients were bigshots in foreign lands — Mobuto Sese Seko (Congo), Jonas Savimbi (Angola), and Ferdinand Marcos (Philippines), as well as interests in Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, the Dominican Republic, Pakistan, Nigeria, Ukraine, and other world beauty spots. Also, most notably, Russia where the wicked Mr. Putin dwells and incessantly plots evil against our shining city of a republic.

Over the years, Manafort took large sums of money to the DC laundry room and then distributed bales of it around town to other lobbyist subcontractors, but he left quite a trail. And he overlooked the requirement to register as an agent for foreign interests. So, indicting him looks like a no-brainer. An entry-level US Attorney could, figuratively speaking, hitch him up to the rear bumper of a Chevy Yukon and drag him over five miles of broken Coke bottles.

If I am right, his indictment will provoke a five-column headline in The New York Times, Don Lemon will have a multiple orgasm on CNN tonight, and by Halloween the whole Manafort matter will be as forgotten as Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the Las Vegas Country Music Massacre. That’s how we roll in Attention Deficit Nation. I suppose Mueller’s team next will want to charge fired National Security Advisor General Michael Flynn for failing to register as a foreign agent prior to a having conversation with the Russian ambassador — but mightn’t it be a little absurd to outlaw dialogue between incoming White House officials and foreign ambassadors who, after all, are here to have conversations with our people? That’ll be an interesting precedent. Why would other countries even bother to send an ambassador here if that’s our policy?

There’s an outside chance, of course — outside, say as far away as the planet Mars — that Mr. Mueller will just flop his whole hand on the table and indict President Trump. Wouldn’t that be a jolt? And it would instantly prompt a constitutional crisis, so my money says ain’t gonna happen.

It’s hard to see where it goes from there. The standard plot-line is to net these smaller fish and use them as bait to harpoon the Big White Whale. Give them immunity and let them sing their hearts out to avoid getting sent to ping-pong camp in the Poconos for a five-year stretch. Or else these two schnooks go bankrupt paying hotshot DC lawyers to get them off the hook. Does Mueller go after Donny Junior for having a conversation with a Russian lawyer? Or son-in-law Jared Kushner for flying to Russia and having meetings with Russians? Hey, does anyone remember that A) We’re not at war with Russia, and B) the soviet regime there folded up twenty-five years ago?

The casual observer can’t avoid dragging Hillary into this. It appears that, among other things, the Clinton Foundation received over a $100 million in “charitable donations” from various Russian companies and individuals over the years. Gosh, they’re a big-hearted people! Maybe it’s all the vodka they guzzle. No doubt, the newly-converted Russian capitalists were yearning to support “impact entrepreneurs” who are creating “new enterprises to generate both social impact and financial returns” by addressing market gaps in developing countries, or to “strengthen the capacity of people in the United States and throughout the world to meet the challenges of global interdependence” — as the Clinton Foundation described their activities.

More likely they wanted to grease their access to the sure-thing It’s-My-Turn Madam President. Except then she went and lost the election… all because of Russian meddling.


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About James Howard Kunstler

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James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.

317 Responses to “Thar She Blows!” Subscribe

  1. K-Dog October 30, 2017 at 9:03 am #


    Hey, does anyone remember that A) We’re not at war with Russia, and B) the soviet regime there folded up twenty-five years ago?

    • robert magill October 30, 2017 at 9:16 am #

      That sounds familiar.

    • SteveO October 30, 2017 at 9:39 am #

      The average age of a US senator is 60, the average age of a congress critter is 57. The cold war period is “the good old days” to these people. Plus, the military/industrial complex was really riding the gravy train in the late cold war era.

      There’s a big chuck of these “law makers”, like John McCain and Lindsey Graham who can’t get through the day without missing the simple moral clarity of “us vs. them”.

      • DrTomSchmidt October 30, 2017 at 9:46 am #

        That about explains it. Like the drunk looking for his Car keys in the light instead of where he dropped them…

        • Epicur October 30, 2017 at 9:51 am #

          Or like a trucker who thinks he can haul more chickens if he stops every couple of miles and beats on the side of the trailer so the chickens get excited and flap their wings.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 30, 2017 at 1:34 pm #

          You’ve studied Nasruddin!

      • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 9:55 am #

        It never seemed right to me to allow so many creatures that have so little future left in them to be allowed to set courses that the rest of us will be forced to take because of their decrepitude. And then there is their desperation to steal more and more value from the rest of us while they still are not dead yet as well. It is a travesty IMHO. I saw a snippet recently about medications being sent to many members of the Congress and Senate for Alzheimer’s. Wow, isn’t that special. Inspires something within but certainly not hope.

        • TiredOfTheTreadmill October 30, 2017 at 11:26 am #

          You make a good point. I believe the old timers running things is a carryover from earlier cultures in which the elders were viewed as knowledgeable stewards looking out for the future of their tribe. In our current “I got mine, screw you” culture, it has become painfully obvious that wisdom and age have no correlation. Would anyone seek wisdom from Trump in any matter except how screw someone over for a buck?

          Also, part of the reason for the ineptitude in congress is the publics’ willingness to vote in the incumbent time and again. After watching this for decades now, I have concluded the mob usually gets the government it deserves and us outsiders get dragged along. For true outsiders and the painfully obvious truths they bring to the table are not welcomed.

        • K-Dog October 30, 2017 at 12:32 pm #

          A) We’re not at war with Russia, and B) the soviet regime there folded up twenty-five years ago and C)Dimitry Orlov is still an ego best avoided.

          Excusing old farts in congress for being stuck in the cold war is no excuse. There are plenty of people just as old who manage with reality just fine. The ugly side of human nature exists in all age groups and people of any age can be stuck on themselves.

          My advice is to rebel against ignorance and stupidity no matter who puts it in your face. Even old entitled bitches!

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 4:57 pm #

            @K-Dog,

            A) Don’t tell Morgan Freeman and Rob Reiner we’re not at war with Russia, B) They think the Soviet regime just changed faces. You can’t trust those Russkies, and C) What do you have against Orlov?

          • SteveO October 31, 2017 at 7:04 am #

            There at lot of old entitled bitches in Washington DC that need to go to the ashcan of history to be with their beloved cold war.

            Same with the Castro haters in south Florida.

    • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 10:43 am #

      Russia was at the heart of the USSR. The cold war never ended and will never end.

      • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 10:50 am #

        It will when the US government collapses and/or is formally dissolved. Although it’ll almost certainly go hot very briefly just before that.

        • Elrond Hubbard October 30, 2017 at 11:10 am #

          If the cold war didn’t end when the former Soviet régime collapsed, why would it end if/when the current U.S. one does? Power relationships are transitory, but interests are permanent. The two are likely to always remain distinct centers of power and thus rivals for various spoils.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:43 am #

            If the US dissolves into civil war and breaks up I don’t see whatever remains exercising much power. US national interests really come down to one thing – money and the access to cheap energy it buys – and when the dollar loses it’s reserve currency status, that will be the end of all that. All the current US military power is deeply financed and now mostly made up of high tech, purposely obsolete show junk. A legitimate shooting war with a legitimate adversary will pop the illusion of American superiority once and for all.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:45 am #

            Additionally, Russia still had deep, sustaining, and binding cultural ties to fall back on when the USSR collapsed. The US? Calls for a breakup are already widely heard throughout the country, and things haven’t even got interesting yet.

          • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 11:50 am #

            F22 has yet to see combat and it is 20 years old. I really believe America will be shocked at how pitiful their military really is.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 12:10 pm #

            Finest show military the world’s ever seen! All for outrageous profits of course!

          • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

            The F-35 is a complete waste. It has long been known multi-function aircraft don’t work because they have different requirements. Camels were designed to travel great distances with very little water. Horses were made for speed and power. A Camelhorse does neither well. A 2 trillion dollar boondoggle that will get its ass kicked in combat.

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 5:01 pm #

            @Scratch,

            If Mueller indicts Trump, things will get VERY interesting, VERY quickly.

  2. Graycenphil October 30, 2017 at 9:05 am #

    It seems Manafort has been a crook for a long time. I just wonder why he had to go for a high profile job. He probably could have continued practicing his trade unnoticed forever.

    I won’t shed a tear if Hillary does wind up getting dragged in too. But I’d rather if she just went away.

    • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 10:41 am #

      Oh that’s easy. Greed. The pie kept getting bigger and bigger. Using his Russian connections to help elect a president for a ton of loot.

      • TiredOfTheTreadmill October 30, 2017 at 12:22 pm #

        Greed, and the idea that Jim constantly notes “nothing matters and anything goes.” There’s hubris a’plenty out there these days. It’s like the rumor about Goldman Sach that the bigger the scam you can pull off and not get caught, the higher you will rise in the company. It’s all part of the money & power games. What can you pull off and still not get caught due to who you know and who/what you can pay.

        • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 8:07 am #

          Does it not boggle the mind to realize that these piles of money that the greedy will do any wrong to acquire not only have a true value of ZERO, but that the perceived value of the fiat currency could at any time assume its true and actual value of NOTHING? Once you realize and accept this as fact you will find yourself left wondering WTF is wrong with so many human beings that they allow themselves to be so easily and totally manipulated by absolutely nothing.

          • Graycenphil October 31, 2017 at 11:36 am #

            Good morning Walter. One may believe (incorrectly, I say) that our money may someday have no value. But currently it does have great value, whether you call it real or perceived. Manafort did a lot of nice things (depending on your definition of nice) with his stolen money.

          • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 1:15 pm #

            And those of you that are willing bark like a dog for your share of it will continue to be enslaved by its perceived luster. I think you completely missed the point and are probably unaware that the tens of millions of Deutschmarks that I hold from the Weimar Republic are completely worthless as are my confederate dollars as well. Nothing lasts forever and everything changes. Change in fact is constant though the rate may vary and as Darwin postulated, it is not the smartest nor the strongest that survive but those that are able to adapt to change. Of course for you everything only changes for the better so I suppose I am only tippy tapping here to exercise my fingers. But that’s not a bad thing I suppose….

          • Graycenphil October 31, 2017 at 6:55 pm #

            Everything does not change for the better, and I never said that. I have said that overall, the world has always been improving. I totally stand by that, and expect that to continue long into the future.

            It is not hard to find currencies that have failed over the years. But people in those countries certainly did not lose everything; most of those with assets continued to have assets. If everything you owned was in Deutschmarks or Confederate dollars under your mattress, you had a problem. That would not have been a very smart way to invest.

            I do not expect the dollar to fail anytime soon; I am extremely confidant about that. Still, in the incredibly unlikely event that did happen, your assets in this country will still have value.

      • Graycenphil October 30, 2017 at 5:30 pm #

        I agree it’s not just greed. If it was that simple, he could have kept on doing what he was doing and made plenty of money. I think he must have been looking for fame and power. Big mistake.

  3. Epicur October 30, 2017 at 9:31 am #

    Thank you for an excellent piece Mr. Kunstler. It shows the nature of the swamp that is our national political capital without favoring sides.

    “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Yeah, waaayyy short.

    It will be fun to watch and see if they can keep the sniping in the circular firing squad from breaking out into a full blown fusillade.

    I have a theory that, as we approach the crisis that will demand the formal (legal) declaration of our national emergency, the contest is being fought more earnestly. This is because whoever occupies the White House when the EMERGENCY is declared will garner almost absolute power.

    It is like a game of musical chairs at the end where the last two contestants want to be in front of the last chair when the music stops. But this game is deadly serious and the chair is more like a throne.

    The problem for us serfs is that both of the last contestants are assholes and we will not prosper under either – although it is certain that some will suffer more depending on which of our national “saviors” gets the throne.

    • GetAbike October 30, 2017 at 10:16 am #

      Nice to get a break from tired culture-war memes and James’ trans-phobic nonsense.

      • shotho October 30, 2017 at 10:34 am #

        As in transportation or Transylvania or transition?

      • My Point of View October 30, 2017 at 1:33 pm #

        Breaking news now that a Federal Judge blocked implementation of Trump’s Trans-ban in the military.

        Time for the orange menace to stage another campaign-rally-idiot-convention in a place like Altoona…

        (sound of Trump smacking forehead: Doh, it’s just gets worse and worse….)

      • Janos Skorenzy October 30, 2017 at 1:37 pm #

        Nothing is more demoralizing than Gays, Lesbians, and Trannies openly cavorting. Now you want them to have rights over ordinary people. Drag Queen have already been given access to small children in schools and libraries. The Evil is overwhelming, yet you think it’s fine. That simply means you’re Evil too.

        • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 2:14 pm #

          The dipshits that are bothered by those who oppose “trannys in the military” are the poster boys for stupidity. Those of us with ties to and family in the service have more than a lot more details of the seriously expensive problem that this issue actually presents. Since the service medical insurances pay for the operations, we are experiencing more and more individuals that sign up just to get a free ride for the transformation. Once underway, the patient is put on anti-depressants for a long time before the surgery and then a long period afterwards. During this time the patients are not allowed to be near, handle or train with weapons or weapon systems whatsoever, which puts them pretty much out of use for almost a two years period. If I remember correctly the total bill for the transformation weighs in at around $2 million bucks. How can there be ANY logic or value in such nonsense? Do the whiners actually WANT to pay for such non-productivity? Why does this benefit our country or our society? I can see those who profit from the surgery being excited by the prospects, but besides them it is a total scam and waste of taxpayer dollars.

          • Elrond Hubbard October 30, 2017 at 4:29 pm #

            Are trans people really joining the military just to get coverage for sex reassignment surgery? There’s an obvious solution whose benefits should be clear to everyone: Medicare for all. Not only would the military save whatever expense it incurs for their care (probably a great deal less per year than even one F-35), but the only trans people entering the military would be ones with a real desire to serve their country (and hopefully, they would have the hard part over already). Everybody wins!

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 5:10 pm #

            @Walter B,

            I thought that Trump put an end to those government paid for sex changes for the military. Or, did the Courts override him on that one too? Somewhere Putin is laughing his ass off.

          • muddmike October 30, 2017 at 5:16 pm #

            Yes, out of a $600 billion + budget $2 million is 0.0003%. That is less than the daily advertising spending of the military, and FAR LESS than the waste of uncontrolled cost overruns!

            That is probably about the cost of a single sortie to drop guided bombs on civilians in the Middle East!

            Do you have any documented proof on how many people are doing this?

          • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 5:29 pm #

            Gee whiz mudmike, yeah $2M is a small percentage of the budget but that is just for one person. I found this article that estimates 15,500 serving with brings the total up to $31B or more than half the budget.

            washingtonpost.com/politics/transgender-in-the-military-a-pentagon-in-transition-weighs-its-policy/2…

            And I have little patience arguing finance with the people of this nation as 99% percent of them are illiterate in accounting, finance or mathematics and even fewer that can manage a budget at all. It all adds up and we pay for it all and we are currently leveraged far into the future. It had better collapse soon or we will be really screwed hard in the end.

          • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 5:31 pm #

            I was interrupted and said half, sorry it is actually 5% and a big nut at that.

          • muddmike October 31, 2017 at 10:10 am #

            If that estimate is correct, then I stand corrected. You should have lead with that.

          • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 1:25 pm #

            Good point Muddmike, and your reply is evidence of a sharp mind as well. Thank you for kicking the idea around in such fine fashion. Those of us who run multimillion dollar projects and government budgets (the line items are almost uncountable, realize that a few $100k here a few $100k there, multiplied by thousands of items and you’ve got numbers that boggle the average mind. I am of the opinion that Americans are no longer able to understand what dollar amounts even mean anymore with trillions, gazillions, and who knows what is above these amounts really means. Line items, dealt with one at a time category by category, page after endless page is a staggering task to control indeed and it take a serious OCD, anal retentive or detailed oriented mind with an intricate system to manage these beasts properly. I love it though because in the end, mathematics never lies and the multiplication of scale can work for you as well as against you.

        • elysianfield October 30, 2017 at 6:08 pm #

          Janos,
          You know, Kevin Spacey, Keyser Soze himself, today outed himself as gay…(sob). Who will be next?

          • ZrCrypDiK November 2, 2017 at 12:36 am #

            Bye-bye TV series?!… (white house farce?) House of shardz? Sose my @$$. *VERBAL*!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • ZrCrypDiK November 2, 2017 at 12:34 am #

        The Russian Oligarchs! U do not *WANT* to believe – U R sleeping…

  4. SteveO October 30, 2017 at 9:32 am #

    Let’s start a betting pool on how long between Manafort’s indictment and Trump’s pardon.

    Step right up and place your bets.

    • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 10:55 am #

      Probably won’t happen. Manafort’s been designated the fall guy. Unless he’s got serious goods on someone(s) big that can’t be swept under the rug, but I can’t imagine why he’d have been prosecuted if that was the case. He’d likely already have made a deal to save his neck. But who in the hell knows, really?

      • SteveO October 30, 2017 at 11:20 am #

        So you want the square that says “when hell freezes over”?

        • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:35 am #

          Yeah, I’ll go with that.

  5. Walter B October 30, 2017 at 9:50 am #

    Wow, Jim have you ever taken a step back to view your blog site here and see it for what it has become – a functioning replacement for the Main Stream Media and a place to come to actually get decent news? Thank you, I was made aware of a lot of details in this issue that I have not been aware of. I simply cannot partake in “news” on TV (don’t have cable anyway), papers or any of the so called “media” sites as they are insultingly propagandized and biased. Though I was made aware of a Wall Street Journal editorial board which called this week for a full Russia investigation — not into President Donald Trump, but into the Democratic party, the FBI, and special counsel Robert Mueller. I will certainly not be holding my breath for justice as I believe that that bitch has died in the dirt a long time ago, but hope springs eternal doesn’t it? Oh wait, hope was destroyed over the course of the last eight years, wasn’t it?

    In any case thank you for your unbiased facts, I will keep my eyes open and my nose to the wind, though I fear that Frau Clinton may still raise her ugly head for another attempt to get her turn. If she does not wind up dangling from a gibbet in some public square somewhere, someday soon, she may surely rise again. You cannot dismiss true evil, it never dies.

    • ozone October 30, 2017 at 11:33 am #

      Walter,
      I must say that you and Epicur are hitting on the salient points of this particular dilemma and the rotting-fish zeitgeist of our situation in general. It’s really quite something to be a (live – for now) witness to the dissolution of ones’ own “essential” institutions! …Can’t say I’m hopeful for a decent outcome of it; like I have said, if some part of the collective “we” should emerge from the ashes, it will likely be the work of some generations to expunge the old ways of doing business and deleterious conventions.

      Desired or not, the play must be played and our parts in it have yet to be written.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. K-Dog October 30, 2017 at 9:03 am #


    Hey, does anyone remember that A) We’re not at war with Russia, and B) the soviet regime there folded up twenty-five years ago?

    • robert magill October 30, 2017 at 9:16 am #

      That sounds familiar.

    • SteveO October 30, 2017 at 9:39 am #

      The average age of a US senator is 60, the average age of a congress critter is 57. The cold war period is “the good old days” to these people. Plus, the military/industrial complex was really riding the gravy train in the late cold war era.

      There’s a big chuck of these “law makers”, like John McCain and Lindsey Graham who can’t get through the day without missing the simple moral clarity of “us vs. them”.

      • DrTomSchmidt October 30, 2017 at 9:46 am #

        That about explains it. Like the drunk looking for his Car keys in the light instead of where he dropped them…

        • Epicur October 30, 2017 at 9:51 am #

          Or like a trucker who thinks he can haul more chickens if he stops every couple of miles and beats on the side of the trailer so the chickens get excited and flap their wings.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 30, 2017 at 1:34 pm #

          You’ve studied Nasruddin!

      • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 9:55 am #

        It never seemed right to me to allow so many creatures that have so little future left in them to be allowed to set courses that the rest of us will be forced to take because of their decrepitude. And then there is their desperation to steal more and more value from the rest of us while they still are not dead yet as well. It is a travesty IMHO. I saw a snippet recently about medications being sent to many members of the Congress and Senate for Alzheimer’s. Wow, isn’t that special. Inspires something within but certainly not hope.

        • TiredOfTheTreadmill October 30, 2017 at 11:26 am #

          You make a good point. I believe the old timers running things is a carryover from earlier cultures in which the elders were viewed as knowledgeable stewards looking out for the future of their tribe. In our current “I got mine, screw you” culture, it has become painfully obvious that wisdom and age have no correlation. Would anyone seek wisdom from Trump in any matter except how screw someone over for a buck?

          Also, part of the reason for the ineptitude in congress is the publics’ willingness to vote in the incumbent time and again. After watching this for decades now, I have concluded the mob usually gets the government it deserves and us outsiders get dragged along. For true outsiders and the painfully obvious truths they bring to the table are not welcomed.

        • K-Dog October 30, 2017 at 12:32 pm #

          A) We’re not at war with Russia, and B) the soviet regime there folded up twenty-five years ago and C)Dimitry Orlov is still an ego best avoided.

          Excusing old farts in congress for being stuck in the cold war is no excuse. There are plenty of people just as old who manage with reality just fine. The ugly side of human nature exists in all age groups and people of any age can be stuck on themselves.

          My advice is to rebel against ignorance and stupidity no matter who puts it in your face. Even old entitled bitches!

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 4:57 pm #

            @K-Dog,

            A) Don’t tell Morgan Freeman and Rob Reiner we’re not at war with Russia, B) They think the Soviet regime just changed faces. You can’t trust those Russkies, and C) What do you have against Orlov?

          • SteveO October 31, 2017 at 7:04 am #

            There at lot of old entitled bitches in Washington DC that need to go to the ashcan of history to be with their beloved cold war.

            Same with the Castro haters in south Florida.

    • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 10:43 am #

      Russia was at the heart of the USSR. The cold war never ended and will never end.

      • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 10:50 am #

        It will when the US government collapses and/or is formally dissolved. Although it’ll almost certainly go hot very briefly just before that.

        • Elrond Hubbard October 30, 2017 at 11:10 am #

          If the cold war didn’t end when the former Soviet régime collapsed, why would it end if/when the current U.S. one does? Power relationships are transitory, but interests are permanent. The two are likely to always remain distinct centers of power and thus rivals for various spoils.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:43 am #

            If the US dissolves into civil war and breaks up I don’t see whatever remains exercising much power. US national interests really come down to one thing – money and the access to cheap energy it buys – and when the dollar loses it’s reserve currency status, that will be the end of all that. All the current US military power is deeply financed and now mostly made up of high tech, purposely obsolete show junk. A legitimate shooting war with a legitimate adversary will pop the illusion of American superiority once and for all.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:45 am #

            Additionally, Russia still had deep, sustaining, and binding cultural ties to fall back on when the USSR collapsed. The US? Calls for a breakup are already widely heard throughout the country, and things haven’t even got interesting yet.

          • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 11:50 am #

            F22 has yet to see combat and it is 20 years old. I really believe America will be shocked at how pitiful their military really is.

          • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 12:10 pm #

            Finest show military the world’s ever seen! All for outrageous profits of course!

          • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

            The F-35 is a complete waste. It has long been known multi-function aircraft don’t work because they have different requirements. Camels were designed to travel great distances with very little water. Horses were made for speed and power. A Camelhorse does neither well. A 2 trillion dollar boondoggle that will get its ass kicked in combat.

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 5:01 pm #

            @Scratch,

            If Mueller indicts Trump, things will get VERY interesting, VERY quickly.

  2. Graycenphil October 30, 2017 at 9:05 am #

    It seems Manafort has been a crook for a long time. I just wonder why he had to go for a high profile job. He probably could have continued practicing his trade unnoticed forever.

    I won’t shed a tear if Hillary does wind up getting dragged in too. But I’d rather if she just went away.

    • seawolf77 October 30, 2017 at 10:41 am #

      Oh that’s easy. Greed. The pie kept getting bigger and bigger. Using his Russian connections to help elect a president for a ton of loot.

      • TiredOfTheTreadmill October 30, 2017 at 12:22 pm #

        Greed, and the idea that Jim constantly notes “nothing matters and anything goes.” There’s hubris a’plenty out there these days. It’s like the rumor about Goldman Sach that the bigger the scam you can pull off and not get caught, the higher you will rise in the company. It’s all part of the money & power games. What can you pull off and still not get caught due to who you know and who/what you can pay.

        • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 8:07 am #

          Does it not boggle the mind to realize that these piles of money that the greedy will do any wrong to acquire not only have a true value of ZERO, but that the perceived value of the fiat currency could at any time assume its true and actual value of NOTHING? Once you realize and accept this as fact you will find yourself left wondering WTF is wrong with so many human beings that they allow themselves to be so easily and totally manipulated by absolutely nothing.

          • Graycenphil October 31, 2017 at 11:36 am #

            Good morning Walter. One may believe (incorrectly, I say) that our money may someday have no value. But currently it does have great value, whether you call it real or perceived. Manafort did a lot of nice things (depending on your definition of nice) with his stolen money.

          • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 1:15 pm #

            And those of you that are willing bark like a dog for your share of it will continue to be enslaved by its perceived luster. I think you completely missed the point and are probably unaware that the tens of millions of Deutschmarks that I hold from the Weimar Republic are completely worthless as are my confederate dollars as well. Nothing lasts forever and everything changes. Change in fact is constant though the rate may vary and as Darwin postulated, it is not the smartest nor the strongest that survive but those that are able to adapt to change. Of course for you everything only changes for the better so I suppose I am only tippy tapping here to exercise my fingers. But that’s not a bad thing I suppose….

          • Graycenphil October 31, 2017 at 6:55 pm #

            Everything does not change for the better, and I never said that. I have said that overall, the world has always been improving. I totally stand by that, and expect that to continue long into the future.

            It is not hard to find currencies that have failed over the years. But people in those countries certainly did not lose everything; most of those with assets continued to have assets. If everything you owned was in Deutschmarks or Confederate dollars under your mattress, you had a problem. That would not have been a very smart way to invest.

            I do not expect the dollar to fail anytime soon; I am extremely confidant about that. Still, in the incredibly unlikely event that did happen, your assets in this country will still have value.

      • Graycenphil October 30, 2017 at 5:30 pm #

        I agree it’s not just greed. If it was that simple, he could have kept on doing what he was doing and made plenty of money. I think he must have been looking for fame and power. Big mistake.

  3. Epicur October 30, 2017 at 9:31 am #

    Thank you for an excellent piece Mr. Kunstler. It shows the nature of the swamp that is our national political capital without favoring sides.

    “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Yeah, waaayyy short.

    It will be fun to watch and see if they can keep the sniping in the circular firing squad from breaking out into a full blown fusillade.

    I have a theory that, as we approach the crisis that will demand the formal (legal) declaration of our national emergency, the contest is being fought more earnestly. This is because whoever occupies the White House when the EMERGENCY is declared will garner almost absolute power.

    It is like a game of musical chairs at the end where the last two contestants want to be in front of the last chair when the music stops. But this game is deadly serious and the chair is more like a throne.

    The problem for us serfs is that both of the last contestants are assholes and we will not prosper under either – although it is certain that some will suffer more depending on which of our national “saviors” gets the throne.

    • GetAbike October 30, 2017 at 10:16 am #

      Nice to get a break from tired culture-war memes and James’ trans-phobic nonsense.

      • shotho October 30, 2017 at 10:34 am #

        As in transportation or Transylvania or transition?

      • My Point of View October 30, 2017 at 1:33 pm #

        Breaking news now that a Federal Judge blocked implementation of Trump’s Trans-ban in the military.

        Time for the orange menace to stage another campaign-rally-idiot-convention in a place like Altoona…

        (sound of Trump smacking forehead: Doh, it’s just gets worse and worse….)

      • Janos Skorenzy October 30, 2017 at 1:37 pm #

        Nothing is more demoralizing than Gays, Lesbians, and Trannies openly cavorting. Now you want them to have rights over ordinary people. Drag Queen have already been given access to small children in schools and libraries. The Evil is overwhelming, yet you think it’s fine. That simply means you’re Evil too.

        • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 2:14 pm #

          The dipshits that are bothered by those who oppose “trannys in the military” are the poster boys for stupidity. Those of us with ties to and family in the service have more than a lot more details of the seriously expensive problem that this issue actually presents. Since the service medical insurances pay for the operations, we are experiencing more and more individuals that sign up just to get a free ride for the transformation. Once underway, the patient is put on anti-depressants for a long time before the surgery and then a long period afterwards. During this time the patients are not allowed to be near, handle or train with weapons or weapon systems whatsoever, which puts them pretty much out of use for almost a two years period. If I remember correctly the total bill for the transformation weighs in at around $2 million bucks. How can there be ANY logic or value in such nonsense? Do the whiners actually WANT to pay for such non-productivity? Why does this benefit our country or our society? I can see those who profit from the surgery being excited by the prospects, but besides them it is a total scam and waste of taxpayer dollars.

          • Elrond Hubbard October 30, 2017 at 4:29 pm #

            Are trans people really joining the military just to get coverage for sex reassignment surgery? There’s an obvious solution whose benefits should be clear to everyone: Medicare for all. Not only would the military save whatever expense it incurs for their care (probably a great deal less per year than even one F-35), but the only trans people entering the military would be ones with a real desire to serve their country (and hopefully, they would have the hard part over already). Everybody wins!

          • outsider October 30, 2017 at 5:10 pm #

            @Walter B,

            I thought that Trump put an end to those government paid for sex changes for the military. Or, did the Courts override him on that one too? Somewhere Putin is laughing his ass off.

          • muddmike October 30, 2017 at 5:16 pm #

            Yes, out of a $600 billion + budget $2 million is 0.0003%. That is less than the daily advertising spending of the military, and FAR LESS than the waste of uncontrolled cost overruns!

            That is probably about the cost of a single sortie to drop guided bombs on civilians in the Middle East!

            Do you have any documented proof on how many people are doing this?

          • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 5:29 pm #

            Gee whiz mudmike, yeah $2M is a small percentage of the budget but that is just for one person. I found this article that estimates 15,500 serving with brings the total up to $31B or more than half the budget.

            washingtonpost.com/politics/transgender-in-the-military-a-pentagon-in-transition-weighs-its-policy/2…

            And I have little patience arguing finance with the people of this nation as 99% percent of them are illiterate in accounting, finance or mathematics and even fewer that can manage a budget at all. It all adds up and we pay for it all and we are currently leveraged far into the future. It had better collapse soon or we will be really screwed hard in the end.

          • Walter B October 30, 2017 at 5:31 pm #

            I was interrupted and said half, sorry it is actually 5% and a big nut at that.

          • muddmike October 31, 2017 at 10:10 am #

            If that estimate is correct, then I stand corrected. You should have lead with that.

          • Walter B October 31, 2017 at 1:25 pm #

            Good point Muddmike, and your reply is evidence of a sharp mind as well. Thank you for kicking the idea around in such fine fashion. Those of us who run multimillion dollar projects and government budgets (the line items are almost uncountable, realize that a few $100k here a few $100k there, multiplied by thousands of items and you’ve got numbers that boggle the average mind. I am of the opinion that Americans are no longer able to understand what dollar amounts even mean anymore with trillions, gazillions, and who knows what is above these amounts really means. Line items, dealt with one at a time category by category, page after endless page is a staggering task to control indeed and it take a serious OCD, anal retentive or detailed oriented mind with an intricate system to manage these beasts properly. I love it though because in the end, mathematics never lies and the multiplication of scale can work for you as well as against you.

        • elysianfield October 30, 2017 at 6:08 pm #

          Janos,
          You know, Kevin Spacey, Keyser Soze himself, today outed himself as gay…(sob). Who will be next?

          • ZrCrypDiK November 2, 2017 at 12:36 am #

            Bye-bye TV series?!… (white house farce?) House of shardz? Sose my @$$. *VERBAL*!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • ZrCrypDiK November 2, 2017 at 12:34 am #

        The Russian Oligarchs! U do not *WANT* to believe – U R sleeping…

  4. SteveO October 30, 2017 at 9:32 am #

    Let’s start a betting pool on how long between Manafort’s indictment and Trump’s pardon.

    Step right up and place your bets.

    • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 10:55 am #

      Probably won’t happen. Manafort’s been designated the fall guy. Unless he’s got serious goods on someone(s) big that can’t be swept under the rug, but I can’t imagine why he’d have been prosecuted if that was the case. He’d likely already have made a deal to save his neck. But who in the hell knows, really?

      • SteveO October 30, 2017 at 11:20 am #

        So you want the square that says “when hell freezes over”?

        • Ol' Scratch October 30, 2017 at 11:35 am #

          Yeah, I’ll go with that.

  5. Walter B October 30, 2017 at 9:50 am #

    Wow, Jim have you ever taken a step back to view your blog site here and see it for what it has become – a functioning replacement for the Main Stream Media and a place to come to actually get decent news? Thank you, I was made aware of a lot of details in this issue that I have not been aware of. I simply cannot partake in “news” on TV (don’t have cable anyway), papers or any of the so called “media” sites as they are insultingly propagandized and biased. Though I was made aware of a Wall Street Journal editorial board which called this week for a full Russia investigation — not into President Donald Trump, but into the Democratic party, the FBI, and special counsel Robert Mueller. I will certainly not be holding my breath for justice as I believe that that bitch has died in the dirt a long time ago, but hope springs eternal doesn’t it? Oh wait, hope was destroyed over the course of the last eight years, wasn’t it?

    In any case thank you for your unbiased facts, I will keep my eyes open and my nose to the wind, though I fear that Frau Clinton may still raise her ugly head for another attempt to get her turn. If she does not wind up dangling from a gibbet in some public square somewhere, someday soon, she may surely rise again. You cannot dismiss true evil, it never dies.

    • ozone October 30, 2017 at 11:33 am #

      Walter,
      I must say that you and Epicur are hitting on the salient points of this particular dilemma and the rotting-fish zeitgeist of our situation in general. It’s really quite something to be a (live – for now) witness to the dissolution of ones’ own “essential” institutions! …Can’t say I’m hopeful for a decent outcome of it; like I have said, if some part of the collective “we” should emerge from the ashes, it will likely be the work of some generations to expunge the old ways of doing business and deleterious conventions.

      Desired or not, the play must be played and our parts in it have yet to be written.

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