Tuesday, March 31, 2009

From Jenna Orkin:

Warships Set Sail Ahead of N. Korean Rocket Launch
World Leaders Face Dire Trade Collapse in London
Empowered IMF Faces Pivotal Test
Global Slowdown Leaves Harbors Awash in Unwanted Ships
Unwanted Cars
Unwanted Planes
Economic Recovery Could Fuel Rise in Pump Prices
Presented in 'good news, bad news' format. What if there's a rise in pump prices without any economic recovery?
Collapse of Crude Prices Heralds Wave of Oil Industry Consolidation
Geithner Won't Say if More Bailout Money is Needed
Big Banks' Recent Profitability Due to AIG Scam? (from Rice Farmer)
...For those to whom this is merely a lot of mumbo-jumbo, let me explain in layman's terms: AIG, knowing it would need to ask for much more capital from the Treasury imminently, decided to throw in the towel, and gifted major bank counter-parties with trades which were egregiously profitable to the banks, and even more egregiously money losing to the U.S. taxpayers, who had to dump more and more cash into AIG, without having the U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner disclose the real extent of this, for lack of a better word, fraudulent scam.

In simple terms think of it as an auto dealer, which knows that U.S. taxpayers will provide for an infinite amount of money to fund its ongoing sales of horrendous vehicles (think Pontiac Azteks): the company decides to sell all the cars currently in contract, to lessors at far below the amortized market value, thereby generating huge profits for these lessors, as these turn around and sell the cars at a major profit, funded exclusively by U.S. taxpayers (readers should feel free to provide more gripping allegories).

What this all means is that the statements by major banks, i.e. JP Morgan Chase (JPM), Citi (C), and BofA (BAC), regarding abnormal profitability in January and February were true, however these profits were a) one-time in nature due to wholesale unwinds of AIG portfolios, b) entirely at the expense of AIG, and thus taxpayers, c) executed with Tim Geithner's (and thus the administration's) full knowledge and intent, d) were basically a transfer of money from taxpayers to banks (in yet another form) using AIG as an intermediary.
Rising Powers Challenge US Role in IMF
US: New Home Sales Just Above Record Low
Prepping for Unemployment
Midwest Bankers' Economic Index Falls to Record Low
Iron County Faces Water Shortage
Central Valley Water Shortage
Fox News' Mad, Tearful, Apocalyptic Rising Star
[I]n a series called “The War Room” last month he talked to experts about the possibility of global financial panic and widespread outbreaks of violence. He challenged viewers to “think the unthinkable” so that they would be prepared in case of emergency. “The truth is — that you are the defender of liberty,” he said. “It’s not the government. It’s not an army or anybody else. It’s you. This is your country....'"

He recently wondered aloud whether FEMA was setting up concentration camps, calling it a rumor that he was unable to debunk.

Comment: Without getting into the extent to which the Obama administration does or does not follow in lockstep with its predecessor, you have to marvel that this stuff is surfacing first on Fox, then in a front page story of the New York Times a mere two months into the new regime. As per tired predictions on these and other pages, the rage is being misdirected at the guy left holding the bag.

But what, exactly, does Beck have in mind when exhorting his viewers to take the place of the government and the army in defending liberty? In the next breath, he describes himself as a clown.

Phew. And - oh yeah - Ha. - JO
New Car Sales Rate May Hit 39-Year Low
Robot Killers Might Be Allowed to Fire On Their Own (from Rice Farmer)
Top 100 Polluters

UK Asks Police to Probe Torture Claims
Spain to Consider Prosecuting Bush Officials Over Torture
FBI Muslim Relations Strained as Government Looks for Terrorists (from Rice Farmer)

NATO at Sixty: Birthday Party or Funeral?
Hurt By Economy, Europeans Vent Their Anger
UK: Call For Widespread Water Meters
France: Workers Take Manager Hostage
Italy's Economic Contraction Accelerates
Portugal Business Confidence at New Record Low
CCM Becomes Spain's First Bank Rescue as Property Bust Worsens
Swiss Leading Indicator Falls to Record Low
Roumania Responds to Siren Call of IMF
Russia May Soon End Anti-Terror Mission in Chechnya
Tensions Grow in Georgia Over Accusations of a Plot
Ukraine, Kazakhstan Capital Controls Backfire as Investors Flee
Russia: Citizen Police
[T]he government is working to revive the druzhiniki in part to help law enforcement agencies combat what officials fear will be a spike in crime and public disorder amid the growing unemployment and rising prices of the economic crisis.

US Opens Route to Afghanistan Through Russia's Backyard
Community-Based Approach in Afghanistan
Comment: See articles above on citizen police in Russia and the mad-as-hell anchor on Fox effectively urging people to take the law, or at least the 'defense of liberty' into their own hands. Is there a trend here?

This seems like an outgrowth of the mentality that brought us the ads that graced NYC subway cars for several years telling people: "If you see something, say something," beneath a photo of an innocently-wrapped package.

These were replaced by another ad assuring us that, "Last year, 1,944 people saw something and said something."

No doubt true. It's not hard to believe that 1,944 people saw packages or brown paper bags with no apparent owner and called 311. I saw a few myself. (Didn't call.) - JO
Gunmen Attack Police Academy in Pakistan
China's Support to Pakistan's Jihadists (UPI)
Conficker Worm Believed to Have Originated in China
Brazen Commando Style Attacks Grow in South Asia
State Firms Hope New LNG Terminals Will Help Prevent Electricity Shortages

UN Security Council
US, China, Blocking India's Way to Security Council Seat
Is Obama Warming to a Permanent UN Security Council Seat for Africa?


Scott said...


Robert Paulsen said...

Russia backs return to Gold Standard to solve financial crisis


Andy Edwards said...

To the questions on Glenn Beck and citizen enforcements, I'd like to hear what others have to say but here's what I know.

Beck is a Mormon, ex-coke head, college drop out, quasi-libertarian. As far as I can tell this comb speaks to some of his peculiarity among talking heads.

That he has an audience is tough to gauge, because as the Times points out conservatism is probably feeling a bit left out. However, in the War Room episode that is mentioned in the article his guests were substantial. No way for me to know what their personal agendas were, however two were ex-CIA, another current military. Gerald Celente rounded the panel out.

It's available somewhere on Y.Tube.

The other portions of Beck's viewers? Who the hell knows, but like JO says it's a trend that begs consideration.

The nation has probably never been so stratified; the disenfranchised that Frum speaks about are not limited at all to conservatives and fundamentalists. If anything they feel fine with their numbers and church groups. That actual fiscal conservatives are not represented at all in the mainstream along with all other perspectives (excepting blind following liberal utopians) is point that makes me wonder.

From what Beck has said it is absolutely plain to see that he has tracked sites like this and LATOC to gauge some of his, probably, more religiously inspired collapse ideas. Which is just sort of dangerous, in that he might not really have any idea what fuck he's talking about in terms of real world scenarios and their origin outside God.

Of course, we'll never know.

Anonymous said...

Andy Edwards,

The other possibility, of course, is that collapse has been the plan all along and sites like this are simply a result of the level of deception required for definitive success. Maybe Beck is simply one more gatekeeper, keeping focus off of the conductors by pointing out the crimes of the players. he's not following or learning from FTW. He's expanding the audience.

Sebastian Ronin said...

Andy Edwards, re Glenn Beck:

IMO, here's the short version. It would seem to me that Fox has turned Beck lose with its own agenda in mind. If I have to spell this agenda out for anyone, then they may wish to reconsider what they are doing poking around in this blog in the first place. Here's the kicker, again IMO. The Fox agenda can be piggy-backed onto, co-opted and turned. At least this is what I have in mind.

eyeballs said...

Some positive movment...

"... the program has also been a haven for the highly educated. Around 80 percent of the 448 people who have gone into agriculture after graduating from the council’s program, such as 27-year-old Hsieh Hau-cheng, hold a university or college degree."

businessman said...

Rice Farmer...Great article on AIG and the scam with the banks! Thanks for passing it along to us.

gaelicgirl said...

To go along with the unwanted cars and planes, here's boats too! An article from the NY Times about unwanted boats littering coastlines:


businessman said...

Sometimes I'll watch Glenn Beck for a little while and I'll think he has some good things to say. Then I think he's too far to the right politically sometimes for me on some subjects, too.

Whatever he does on his new show, he'll have to walk the fine line between rallying the people and not pissing off The Powers That Be. And if he can pull that off he could become hugely popular. (And if he crosses the line and pisses off TPTB then he'll just be taken off the air.)

There are a lot of conservative people out there who feel alienated by the Republican party right now. I never imagined the day when Barry Goldwater, Sr. and Pat Buchanan would be looked upon as being liberals by the people who run the Republican party.

There are a lot of conservatives looking for someone who can really speak to them about what's important to them, and they're tired of hearing from all the same demagogues on the far Right.

AR said...

Christian Science Monitor has a great April Fools story to send to your friends/family who disbelieve in climate change:

Scientists worldwide admit global warming is a hoax"

It makes great fun of Al Gore, in a poke-to-the-eye for those who listen to Blimpbaugh:

"After revoking the 2007 prize from Gore and the IPCC, the Nobel committee retroactively awarded it to the more than 31,000 people who signed the Oregon Petition...."
For his part, Al Gore has owned up to duping the scientific community. In a blog post on his website, the ex-Nobel Laureate explains the genesis of his scheme, “now that the jig is up.”

etc. A must-read for some comic relief!

agape wins said...


if it takes 100 BTU's of electricity to make a gallon of ethanol that produces 100 BTU's when burned, you have done nothing. ROEI=1.

I do comprehend, the future will not arrive like falling off a cliff!

How do you equate raising/eating meat?

It costs 78 calories of fossil fuel to produce 1 calorie of protein from beef. It costs only 2 calories of fuel to produce 1 calorie of soy protein. Why is this? The agricultural aspects of growing & supplying food to six billion animals grown for slaughter per year are unbelievable!

Imagine huge football field sized facilities all over the country packed tightly with wall-to-wall animals. These need to be heated in winter and cooled in summer. Dairy farms are massive users of energy. Transporting cattle to the feeding lot, then to the auction house, to the finishing lot, and then to the slaughterhouse is done with rigs that get about 1 mile per gallon, or with trains, also fuel-inefficient. At the slaughterhouse, the big energy demand starts until the meat is cooked: it must be frozen or refrigerated, and kept that way everywhere it goes. Grains, fruits, and vegetables, for the most part require no such refrigeration.

Land Costs

It takes 16 lb. of grain to produce 1 lb. of beef. We devote 64% of our US cropland to growing livestock feed...and 2% to growing all fruits & vegetables. Land used for growing all food for human consumption totals 60 million acres. The land used to grow all food fed to livestock is over 1.2 billion acres. Meat consumption is very costly in cropland. 1 acre of prime land will sustain (or create) 250 lb. of beef. Or, 5,000 lbs. of cherries, or 10,000 lbs. of green beans, or 40,000 lbs. of potatoes, or 60,000 lbs. of celery. Therefore, it requires about 500 times as much land to produce a pound of beef as a pound of produce.
Unquote. From below,


Tell me if the shoe fits the right but not the left?

On to farming;

Why Eliminate Tomatoes and Potatoes?

According to macrobiotic theory, tomatoes and potatoes create a natural balance to meat, dairy, fats, and the excess salt found in the Standard American Diet. The chemical and energetic qualities of potatoes and tomatoes produce extreme, expansive effects which can expand and weaken the bones, joints, teeth, gums, and all body organs, especially for those who are sensitive and allergic to them.
Unquote. From---

our progress is going to be in many
small steps with many stumbles &
costly mistakes, in lives & money.

In my over 70 years, I have seen too many plans/ideas which resulted in the opposite than expected outcome.

It is sometimes worth the extra expense if it's temporary and
leads to a better solution.
Anything we do which is linked
to the present paradigm is doomed
to fail, unless it is just a step
toward a more constructive Future.

I'll have some more to say about
Steps & mis-steps later.


FTW admin said...

john sent


© Copyright 2005-2007 GlobalResearch.ca

Zachary Stowasser said...

here is some GOOD NEWS for a change:



xoxo - infopatriots.blogspot.com

eyeballs said...

Hi there Agape!

Being vegetarian, I have plenty of reason to oppose meat production, especially factory farming (which is cruel, as well as inefficient). However, not all land is suitable for grain or vegetable production.

Grasslands converted into wheat fields have destroyed natural ecosystems that fed Life indefinitely, substituting grains which require constant input. Plains Indians hunted wild Buffalo on American grasslands, destroying nothing but the individual animals that would become their food.

Pasturalists have traditionally moved their flocks and herds around so as to not over-use a particular area. Now, when population pressures and eco-damage have reduced available pasture land, animals are overgrazing in many places. So grain is appropriate some places, and grazing is appropriate in some places, but we need to be consciouls of how we use the land.

Demand for meat will continue, however.

A reasonable course is to raise a number of animals appropriate to the land, where that land has no better use. This involves drastically reducing meat production and consumption, meaning not only a switch to more vegetable proteins but a large general reduction in protein consumed. Fish populations are declining rapidly, and cannot replace red meat.

If we want 7 billion people to live well (and many do not want to share the planet), we need to help convert the diets of the most gluttonous meat eaters. Market forces will help, and laws prohibiting various practics (such as the worst in factory farming) would help IF we could get them passed, but perhaps the best personal effort is to present meat eaters with tasty and nutritious alternatives.

In Taiwan, many meat eaters go veg on the full and new moon, as a Buddhist thing. (Kind of like Catholic "fish Friday".) Since they learn to enjoy the food, they often select veg for other meals, the way one would choose Italian or Japanese food for a night out.
Want to reduce meat consumption? Treat your carnivorous friends to a great veg meal! Or open a veg restaurant or local dining club and invite carnivores to enjoy.

One part of the new horizon I seldom hear about is the gift economy. Give someone the gift of new knowledge, and also a full belly. Free food programs will be important. Used to be "feed the poor". Now it's "feed the people". To reduce meat consumption, feed us (you neighbors and townsfolk) great veg meals. The love is bound to come back round.

tim said...

You are absolutely correct that the ROEI for beef is terrible. You are correct that most aspects of our lives are this far out of balance. Just reminding everyone that almost every green energy you hear about has this very low ROEI.

trobador said...

Monsanto bills being rushed through Congress, set to destroy organic farming.

To Jenna, Ecosutra and others,

We have less than two weeks to stop the take over of family farms and ranches,organic and natural foods. H.R. 875 and S. 425 [and similar bills such a H.R. 759]

See by yourself: http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/568/t/1128/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=26714

Under the act, every food producer must have a written food safety plan describing likely hazards and preventative controls they have implemented and must abide by "minimum standards related to fertilizer use, nutrients, hygiene, packaging, temperature controls, animal encroachment, and water."

"That opens a whole can of worms," Olson said. "I think that's where people are starting to freak out about losing organic agriculture. Who is going to decide what the minimum standards are for fertilization or anything else? The government is going to bring in big industry and say we are setting up these protocols, so what do you think we should do? Who is it going to bring in to ask? The government will bring in people who have economies of scale who have that kind of influence." See: http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=92002


Dave said...

Anyone else see that the FASB is going to allow banks to skirt mark to market accounting rules?


So in other words they now no longer have to value assets at what they're actually worth, they can just make up a value in order to make their balance sheet appear more healthy.

eyeballs said...

RE: (CFR) Unveils Global Governance Agenda (from John)

The article claims that CFR is promoting an internationalist end-game of taking over the world economy. I would suggest that the people involved have already taken it over, and are just trying to consolidate and protect their arrangement. “Terrorism” threatens their oilfields and their copper mines and their clearcutting operations. Population has to come down or they will have to share the world with too many “useless eaters”. But CFR is merely the clothing some of these guys wear.

It’s no surprise that the very wealthiest people have formed an international class, to which they identify much more than to their ethnicity or nationality. And their loyal manager class, Davos Man – multilingual MBAs climbing on and off corporate jets with Blackberries and cocaine and tailored suits – has little common interest with the laboring population of any particular country. So of course we can expect these two classes to use their vast resources to tie this demimonde together, excluding interference from outside the group as much as they can.

What THEM has done, we have little chance of reversing, though Chaos will mock the order they seek.

There is no room for outrage. This is like earthquakes, rattlesnakes and sleet. It’s a part of your environment. Get used to it.

We cannot legislate 1776 back into existence. We cannot riot in the streets to bring back the glory days of the 1960s or the 1800s or whenever we think the Golden Age happened. Looking carefully at the immensity of our jungle, listening carefully for signs of danger and opportunity, we have to live wild in this landscape. We were fools to live tame in the mid-20th century, while TPTB were building the early components of their Tower of Babel. But now it’s here. So, seeing what is happening on our New Horizon, what are WE gonna do?