Page 18 of 18 FirstFirst ... 815161718
Results 256 to 269 of 269

Thread: Collapse

  1. #256
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2019/0...tive.html#more

    Going Negative

    The following article was first published three years ago. Since then the US Federal Reserve has raised interest rates above zero, only to start lowering them again. In the meantime, the total amount of negative-yielding debt in the world has reached $13 trillion (USD). This is more than the combined 2019 federal budgets of USA, China, Germany, France, the UK, Japan, Italy, Brazil and Canada (which, incidentally, are nine of the largest, most overdeveloped and most collapse-prone economies on the planet). It may seem surprising that investors are willing to lend money at a negative interest rate, but it's an offer they can't refuse: they would rather lose their money slowly over time than all at once. Some investors (and central banks) have decided that fiat currency reserves are a bad idea and are buying gold instead, but this won't change the overall economic picture. And overall picture is that global financial collapse has been on pause since 2008, but now somebody hit "play" again. In any case, this seems like an opportune moment to dust off this article and once again look at what negative interest rates are, and what they do.


    Previously, I have written about the progression from positive interest rates to zero interest rates (since 2008) and finally to negative interest rates. And I asked my readers a simple question: How will negative interest rates blow up the financial system? And apparently none of you knew the answer. Now, I must confess that to start with I didn’t know the answer either, which is why I asked the question, and my first attempts at finding it were somewhat tentative. But now, having thought about it, I do seem to have found the answer, and it is that…

    But first let us back up a bit and answer several preliminary questions:

    1. Why did zero interest rates become necessary?
    2. Why are negative interest rates now necessary? and,
    3. Why are negative interest rates a really excellent idea?*

    * if you ignore certain unintended consequences (which is what everyone does all the time, so let’s not worry about them just yet).

    1. Interest rates went to zero because economic growth went to zero. If you are just now wondering why that happened, just google “Limits to Growth” by clicking this link. (A public notice about the scheduled end of growth has been on display at your global planning office for four decades now. It is not anyone else’s fault if people of this planet don’t take an interest in their global affairs. I mean, seriously…)

    Interest rates and rates of growth are related: a positive interest rate is little more than a bet that the future is going to be bigger and more prosperous, enabling people to pay off the debts with interest. This is an obvious point: if your income increases, it becomes easier to repay your debts; if it stagnates, it becomes harder; if it shrinks, it eventually becomes impossible.

    Yes, you can nitpick and split hairs, and claim that there was still some growth, but in the developed economies most of this growth has been in financial shenanigans, fueled by an explosion in debt, and most of the benefits of this last bit of growth accrued to the wealthiest 1%, and did next to nothing for anyone else. Did this growth help support a large, stable and prosperous middle class? No, it didn’t.

    In fact, wages in the US, which was once the world’s largest economy, have been stagnant for generations. In response, the Federal Reserve has been continuously reducing interest rates, until they hit zero in 2008. And there they have stayed ever since. But now, it turns out, that’s not good enough. If the Federal Reserve wants to keep the party going, they have to do more, because…

    2. Once you are faced with a continuously shrinking economy, just holding interest rates at zero is not sufficient to forestall financial collapse. The interest rates must go negative.

    Here are just a couple of particularly striking examples.

    Australia has amassed a huge pile of debt—over 120% of GDP—and most of it is mortgage debt on overvalued real estate. Now that Australia’s economy, which was driven by commodity exports to China, has tanked, a lot of this debt is being turned into interest-only loans, because Australians no longer have the money to repay any of the principal. But what if they can’t make the interest payments either? The obvious solution is to refinance their mortgages as interest-only at zero percent; problem solved! Of course, as conditions deteriorate further, the Australians will become unable to afford taxes and utilities. Negative interest rates to the rescue! Refinance them again at a negative rate of interest, and now the banks will pay them to live in their overpriced houses.

    Another example: energy (oil and gas) companies in the US have accumulated a fantastic pile of debt. All of this money was sunk into developing marginal and very expensive resources such as shale oil and deep offshore. Since then, energy prices have fallen, making all of these investments unprofitable and dramatically reducing revenue. As a result, energy companies in the US are a few months away from having to spend their entire revenue on interest payments. The solution, of course, is to allow them to roll over their debt at zero percent, and if you want them to ever start drilling again (their production has been falling by around 10% annualized) then please make that interest rate negative.

    3. Are you starting to see how this works? Whereas before you had to be careful about taking on debt, and had to have a plan for how you will repay it, with negative interest rates that is simply not a consideration. If your debt pays you, then more debt is always better than less debt. It no longer matters that the economy continuously shrinks because now you can get paid just for twiddling your thumbs!

    But are there any unintended consequences of negative interest rates? Unintended consequences are hard to think about, and most people get a headache even trying. How can it be that clean, plentiful nuclear energy will eventually pollute the whole planet with long-lived radionuclides, resulting sky-high cancer rates? How can it be that wonderful genetically modified seeds will render us sickly and infertile in just a few generations? And how can it be that ingenious mobile computing technology has turned our children into zombies who are constantly twiddling their smartphones as they sleepwalk through life? It’s hard to think about any of this without taking some happy pills; and how can it be that taking those happy pills has… you get the idea.

    The unintended consequence of negative interest rates is that they destroy money. This is true in an entirely trivial sense: if you deposit x dollars at -ρ% annual, then a year later you will only have x(1-ρ) dollars because xρ dollars has been destroyed. (In case you prefer to count on your fingers and toes, if you deposit $10 at -10% annual, then a year later you will only have $9 because $1 has been destroyed.) But what I mean is something slightly more profound: negative interest rates erode the very concept of money.

    To get at the reason for this, we have to ask a slightly more profound question: What is money? I think that money is the cult of the god Mammon. Look at the following symbols:

    € $ ¥ £

    Don’t they resemble religious symbols? In fact, that’s what they are: they are symbols of faith in money. They are also units—dimensionless units, of a peculiar kind. There are quite a few dimensionless units in math and science, such as π, e, %, ppm, but they are all ratios that relate physical quantities to other, identical, physical quantities. They are dimensionless because the units cancel out. For instance, π is the ratio between a circle’s circumference and diameter; length over length gives nothing. But monetary quantities do not directly relate to any physical quantity at all. It can be said that some number of monetary units (let's call them "yarbles") is equivalent to some number of turnips, but that, you see, is a matter of faith. Should the turnip farmer turn out to be an unbeliever, he would be within his rights to say, “I am not taking any of your damn yarbles!” or, if he were a polite turnip farmer, “Your money is no good here, Sir!”

    Of course, if our turnip farmer were to do that, he’d land in quite a bit of trouble because, you see, the cult of Mammon is a state cult. You have no choice but to be a believer, because only by worshiping Mammon can you earn the money to pay your taxes, and if you don’t pay your taxes you get jailed. Nor can you produce money on your own, because that right is reserved for Mammon’s high priests, the bankers. Making your own money makes you a heretic, and gets you the modern equivalent of being burned at the stake, which is a $250,000 fine and a 20-year prison sentence.

    But it goes beyond that, because the state insists that just about everything there is must be valued in units of its money. And the way everything must be valued is through a mystical legitimizing process that is central to the cult of money: Mammon’s “invisible hand” makes itself apparent within the “free market,” which is Mammon's virtual temple. The “invisible hand” sets the price of everything as a mystical revelation and, as with any revelation, it is beyond criticism. It is a redemptive ritual, in which people acting out of their basest, most antisocial instincts—greed and fear—manage, through Mammon's divine intervention, to serve the common good. The “free market” is also believed to have all sorts of miraculous properties, and as with all miracles it is all a matter of smoke and mirrors and suspension of disbelief. For example, the “free market” is said to be “efficient.” But it sets the price of turnips, and the result is that fully 40% of the food in the US ends up being wasted. That’s definitely not efficient.

    This sort of inefficiency can be tolerated while resources are plentiful. Should throwing away 40% of the turnips cause a shortage of turnips develop, turnip producers can grow more turnips and sell them at prices that turnip consumers can still afford. But when resources are no longer plentiful, this trick stops working, and what you end up with is something called market failure. The current state of the global oil industry is a good example: either the price is so high that marginal consumers cannot afford it (as was the case until quite recently), or the price is so low that the marginal producers can’t break even (as is the case now).

    And so a bout of supply destruction follows a bout of demand destruction, and then the pattern repeats. Everybody loses, plus this is terribly inefficient. It would be far more efficient to appoint some central planner to calculate the optimum price of oil once a month. Then all the marginal producers would jump out the window, all the marginal consumers would slit their wrists, and equilibrium conditions would prevail. As the oil supply dwindled (it is depleting at around 5% per year), some additional number of producers and consumers would need to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, and so on until the last barrel is produced and burned, leaving whatever producers and consumers still remained lying in pools of their own blood.

    As natural resources dwindle, our faith in the cult of Mammon is being sorely tested. But what alternatives are there? Well, there is an even older, ancient cult that’s based on idolatry: the worship of precious metals. Gold has some industrial and aesthetic uses, but it is primarily useful for making a golden calf for you to worship (or, if you are former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich, a golden toilet). Economists tell us that gold is a “pet rock” or a “barbarous relic,” and they are right, but what is one to do when there is a Götterdämmerung (twilight of the gods) going on? Nature abhors a vacuum, and in a Götterdämmerung older pagan deities sometimes emerge and demand virgin sacrifices—such as poisoning entire river ecosystems by mining gold using mercury, or squandering prodigious amounts of fossil fuels in mining, crushing and sifting through millions of tons of hard rock to get at just 3 parts per million of gold.

    Negative interest rates are Mammon’s Götterdämmerung. The money cult is bolstered by the idea that its huge and all-powerful deity will be even more huge and all-powerful tomorrow; if the opposite is demonstrably the case, then people’s faith in it begins to falter and fade. Negative interest rates are like an icy-cold bath for Mammon, causing its godhead to shrink a little more with every dip. People see that, and think, “I don’t want to worship his shrinking yarbles.” Then they go and spend their own yarbles on anything they can find—fallow land, vacant houses, golden calves, boxes of brass knobs... They don’t bother investing their yarbles in growing turnips, because what’s the use of turnips if all you can do with them is sell them for even more shrinking yarbles?

    Negative interest rates are an excellent idea—and perhaps the only way to keep the financial game going a bit longer—but, given these unintended consequences, they are also a terrible idea. The bankers know that. They want to preserve their cult’s status, and constantly talk about raising interest rates. But they haven’t yet, because they also know that just a small increase will result in trillions of dollars of losses, triggering widespread business failures and ushering in the Greatest Great Depression Ever. This is not a problem for them to solve; this is a predicament. They will delay and pray, and make pronouncements loaded with keywords designed to please the high-frequency trading algorithms that are in charge of artificially levitating the “free market” with judiciously timed injections of “free money.” But in the end all they can do is act brave, wait for a distraction and then… run for the exits!

    And your job is to make it to the exits before they do.

  2. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (20th August 2019), Aragorn (20th August 2019), Dreamtimer (21st August 2019), Elen (10th September 2019), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  3. #257
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    From 10:43, the reliably pessimistic Peter Hitchens discusses why he thinks Britain is a doomed society. I think his analysis is spot-on, though he perhaps misses the point that what he says about Britain applies to most Western Societies these days and even to supposedly dynamic societies, such as China. My own take away is that Brexit is but a symptom of a deeper malaise within British society, where the country itself is clearly headed for a Breakup and the end of its current constitutional, political and economic arrangements.


  4. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (Yesterday), Aragorn (9th September 2019), Dreamtimer (10th September 2019), Elen (10th September 2019), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  5. #258
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    7th April 2015
    Location
    Patapsco Valley
    Posts
    9,053
    Thanks
    50,832
    Thanked 40,513 Times in 8,970 Posts
    Thanks, Chris. Very interesting.

    This current weather event could lead to some collapse down under, hopefully they haven't undermined their abilities to respond in the manner that we are doing here in America.

    Large swathes of New South Wales and southern Queensland will face catastrophic weather events over the next months. The reason is Antarctica's westerly winds which control the Australian Climate, are impacted by 'sudden stratospheric warming.'

    As a result, the direst prediction is a change in Australia's rainfall patterns. The likely outcome is drought, desertification, mass deaths of livestock, plants, fish and other wildlife, out of control fires and unbearable heat.




    As the sun shifts southward during spring, the polar region starts to warm. This warming causes the stratospheric vortex and associated westerly winds to gradually weaken over the period of a few months.

    However, in some years this breakdown can happen faster than usual. Waves of air from the lower atmosphere (from large weather systems or flow over mountains) warm the stratosphere above the South Pole, and weaken or “mix” the high-speed westerly winds.

    Very rarely, if the waves are strong enough they can rapidly break down the polar vortex, actually reversing the direction of the winds so they become easterly. This is the technical definition of “sudden stratospheric warming.”
    Apart from warming the Antarctic region, the most notable effect will be a shift of the Southern Ocean westerly winds towards the Equator.

    For regions directly in the path of the strongest westerlies, which includes western Tasmania, New Zealand's South Island, and Patagonia in South America, this generally results in more storminess and rainfall, and colder temperatures.

    But for subtropical Australia, which largely sits north of the main belt of westerlies, the shift results in reduced rainfall, clearer skies, and warmer temperatures.
    We identified ecosystems across Australia that have recently experienced catastrophic changes, including:

    kelp forests shifting to seaweed turfs following a single marine heatwave in 2011;

    the destruction of Gondwanan refugia by wildfire ignited by lightning storms in 2016;

    dieback of floodplain forests along the Murray River following the millennial drought in 2001–2009;

    large-scale conversion of alpine forest to shrubland due to repeated fires from 2003–2014;

    community-level boom and bust in the arid zone following extreme rainfall in 2011–2012, and

    mangrove dieback across a 1,000km stretch of the Gulf of Carpentaria after a weak monsoon in 2015-2016.
    Of these six case studies, only the Murray River forest had previously experienced substantial human disturbance. The others have had negligible exposure to stressors, highlighting that undisturbed systems are not necessarily more resilient to climate change.

    The case studies provide a range of examples of how presses and pulses can interact to push an ecosystem to a “tipping point”. In some cases, a single extreme event may be sufficient to cause an irreversible regime shift.
    I don't know about frying an egg on the hood of a car, but apparently a steak left inside will cook.




  6. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Dreamtimer For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (Yesterday), Aragorn (13th September 2019), Chris (13th September 2019), Elen (13th September 2019), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  7. #259
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    Australia was always subject to multi-year droughts, they tend to come and go, but the overall warming / drying trend is unmistakeable. It is a pity because Australia is already the driest and hottest inhabited continent, that characteristic will just get more pronounced with climate change.

    From what I hear from locals, most of Australia is unfit for human habitation and has more in common with the surface of Mars than the green lushness we're used to in Europe. The tiny sliver of temperate zone along the coasts is actually getting a bit crowded and marginal for human habitation. I think weather modification has great potential though, they only have to usher those pesky Southern Ocean clouds a few hundred miles to the North to make large swathes of the Southern deserts bloom.

    There is a HAARP facility somewhere near Alice Springs (I think it's called Pine Gap) which is rumoured to already have rudimentary weather modification capabilities. Unfortunately, it's fully owned and run by the US military, but hopefully one day they'll actually start using it for something good.

  8. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (Yesterday), Aragorn (13th September 2019), Dreamtimer (13th September 2019), Elen (13th September 2019), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  9. #260
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    The political collapse of the US is progressing nicely. I always thought the economy or the financial system would go first, and that would trigger an eventual political collapse, but apparently I forgot my history lesson about the collapse of the Soviet Union. Despite all the underlying economic problems, what really did it in was a coup.

    We are now witnessing two slow-moving right-wing coups in the Western World, one in the UK and the other in the US, reinforcing and feeding off each other. The Breakup of the UK is now a near certainty, I would not rule it out in the case of the US either. We could even see some sort of low-level civil war in both countries. The proximate cause in both cases is really just the megalomania and sheer irrationality of the man in charge, the "Britain Trump" is at least sane, not something we could now say about the original. When ex-government officials start saying Orange Mugabe is clearly off his rockers, it's hard to disagree with them.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...-2020-election

    Trump is seriously, frighteningly, dangerously nuts – the world is in danger
    Robert Reich

    It is almost too late for impeachment. The 25th amendment is untested. The ballot box offers our only remaining hope

    In retrospect, what’s most disturbing about “Sharpiegate” isn’t Trump’s clumsy effort to doctor a National Weather Service map or even his brazen move to get the same agency to lie on his behalf.

    It’s how utterly petty his motive was. We’ve had presidents trying to cover up a sexual liaison with an intern and a botched burglary, but never have we had one who went to such lengths to cover up an inaccurate weather forecast. Alabama being hit by a hurricane? Friends, this is not rational behavior.

    Trump also cancelled a meeting with the Taliban at Camp David. The meeting was to have been secret. It was scheduled for the week of the anniversary of 9/11. He cancelled it by tweet.

    Does any of this strike you as even remotely rational?

    Before that, Trump cancelled a state visit to Denmark because Denmark wouldn’t sell Greenland to the US. Hello? Greenland wasn’t for sale. The US no longer buys populated countries. The state visit had been planned for months.

    He has repeatedly told senior officials to explore using nuclear bombs to stop hurricanes hitting the US. He believes video games cause mass shootings. He thinks climate change is no big deal.

    He says trade wars are “good and easy to win”. He insists it’s Chinese rather than US consumers who pay his tariffs. He “orders” American firms to stop doing business in China.

    He calls the chairman of the Federal Reserve an “enemy”. He retweets a comedian’s sick suggestion that the Clintons were responsible for the suicide of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

    I think we have to face the truth that no one seems to want to admit. This is no longer a case of excessive narcissism or grandiosity. We’re not simply dealing with an unusually large ego.

    The president of the United States is seriously, frighteningly, dangerously nuts. And he’s getting nuttier by the day.

    Such a person in the Oval Office can do serious damage.

    What to do? We can vote him out of office in 14 months’ time. But he could end the world in seven and a half seconds.

    There’s also the question of whether he’ll willingly leave.

    Can you imagine the lengths he will go to win? Will he get Russia to do more dirty work? Instruct the justice department to arrest his opponent? Issue an executive order banning anyone not born in the US from voting? Start another war?

    By the time the courts order him to cease whatever unconstitutional effort he’s making to remain in office, the election may be over. Or he’ll just ignore the courts.

    It’s almost too late for an impeachment. Besides, no president has ever been sent packing. Nixon resigned because he saw it coming. Trump would sooner start a civil war.

    Also, being coo-coo is not an impeachable offense.

    Two Republicans who have announced primary challenges to him have suggested another possibility: the 25th amendment.

    Former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld recently tweeted that Trump is “a clear and present danger” to the US, with the hashtag “#25thAmendment”. Former Illinois representative Joe Walsh says the amendment should be “looked at” because the president is “nuts”.

    Last February, former deputy director and acting director of the FBI Andrew McCabe said officials in the Department of Justice had discussed using the 25th.

    Ratified in 1967, it allows the vice-president to become “acting president” when “the vice-president and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or such other body as Congress may by law provide” declare a president incapacitated.

    The only attribute Vice-President Mike Pence has displayed so far is sycophancy: most recent illustration, overnighting at Trump’s golf resort in Ireland. But with rumors flying that Trump might exchange him for another lapdog, who knows? Maybe Pence will discover some cojones.

    Another problem: the amendment doesn’t define who “principal officers” are and the constitution never mentions the word “cabinet”. If Trump thought a revolt was brewing, he’d fire everyone instantly.

    I wouldn’t completely rule out the 25th amendment, but the only thing that’s going to get Pence and a majority of Trump’s lieutenants to pull the plug before Trump pulls it on them may be so horrific that the damage done to America and the world would be way beyond anything we’ve experienced to date.

    Which is to say, be careful what you wish for.

    Pray that we make it through the next 14 months. Then do everything in your power to remove this man from office.

    Robert Reich, a former US secretary of labor, is professor of public policy at the University of California at Berkeley and the author of Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few and The Common Good. He is also a columnist for Guardian US

  10. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (Yesterday), Dreamtimer (Yesterday), Elen (Yesterday), NotAPretender (Yesterday), Wind (Yesterday)

  11. #261
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    7th April 2015
    Location
    Patapsco Valley
    Posts
    9,053
    Thanks
    50,832
    Thanked 40,513 Times in 8,970 Posts
    The political collapse of the US is progressing nicely.
    Such a sad phrase. (to me)

  12. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Dreamtimer For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Yesterday), Elen (Yesterday), NotAPretender (Yesterday), Wind (Yesterday)

  13. #262
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    Such a sad phrase. (to me)
    Hi DT, to be clear, I am not trying to be gloaty or unkind, I think the entire technosphere (Dmitry Orlov's phrase, originally by way of Vladimir Putin) or in other words, Industrial Civilisation in its current form is ripe for collapse. It's just that the US is the most obvious example of the perniciousness of technospheric insanity, with China following close behind. I believe that the current trade war between the US and China is actually a contest, the winner of which will collapse first. China may very well beat the US to it, but I think that's impossible to predict. The UK is also a pretty good candidate for collapse, firstly, because of its political situation, but also because its economy has been completely financialised and it produces very little of value these days. It may very well be the first to go, though Kunstler's money is on Japan. I think Europe is more resilient, because of its smaller scale, and particularly because it has agriculture and industry that is less energy-dependent and is operated on a smaller scale, with more human attention and input. I do think that our destructive Industrial Civilisation will be replaced by something a lot more appealing, gentle and modest, in time.

  14. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Elen (Yesterday), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  15. #263
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    3,857
    Thanks
    14,964
    Thanked 17,180 Times in 3,852 Posts
    In my estimation negative interest rates are the sensible way for banks to give back some of the money that they've stolen. Who cares if stupid people lose faith in money? This is where we need to go, anyway.
    "We are one thought away from changing the world!"

  16. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to NotAPretender For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Yesterday), Elen (Yesterday)

  17. #264
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    3,857
    Thanks
    14,964
    Thanked 17,180 Times in 3,852 Posts
    Now Robert Reich says the world is in danger...I said that 4 years ago. And the folks at Topic of Topics banned me for it...They laughed and all had a good joke about how I was a troll, lonely, intellectually lacking and needing attention. I never had a chance to tell them not to give up their day jobs because they'd never make it as psychics. The one person that I would love to have a discussion with is someone that was named nava raja or some such impressive enlightened name. What a clueless ego. I'm a full believer in the old aphorism, "He who laughs last, laughs best!" And I'm yukking it about in a major way. Those elite intellectuals over there I hope have discovered something about themselves at the very least.
    "We are one thought away from changing the world!"

  18. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to NotAPretender For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Yesterday), Elen (Yesterday)

  19. #265
    Senior Member Hungary
    Join Date
    10th July 2018
    Posts
    725
    Thanks
    1,734
    Thanked 3,658 Times in 723 Posts
    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    Now Robert Reich says the world is in danger...I said that 4 years ago. And the folks at Topic of Topics banned me for it...They laughed and all had a good joke about how I was a troll, lonely, intellectually lacking and needing attention. I never had a chance to tell them not to give up their day jobs because they'd never make it as psychics. The one person that I would love to have a discussion with is someone that was named nava raja or some such impressive enlightened name. What a clueless ego. I'm a full believer in the old aphorism, "He who laughs last, laughs best!" And I'm yukking it about in a major way. Those elite intellectuals over there I hope have discovered something about themselves at the very least.
    We shall see if this blows over, but the Commander in Chief of the US armed forces is clearly off his rockers and certifiably insane, if we're being honest. That was also the case with Hitler and Stalin btw, so I'm not terribly optimistic. However, the situation in the US is different, in that it is still a semi-functioning democracy and there are checks and balances on the executive. He can't just do whatever he wants, he's not a dictator, yet, he just wants to be one. Whilst the danger is real and urgent, there is still hope that sanity will prevail and the world doesn't blow up in front of our eyes. Bolton's departure is perhaps a hopeful sign.

  20. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Chris For This Useful Post:

    Fred Steeves (Yesterday), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  21. #266
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
    Join Date
    1st May 2016
    Location
    East Tennessee U.S.A.
    Posts
    970
    Thanks
    1,384
    Thanked 6,008 Times in 974 Posts
    Quote Originally posted by Chris View Post
    We shall see if this blows over, but the Commander in Chief of the US armed forces is clearly off his rockers and certifiably insane, if we're being honest. That was also the case with Hitler and Stalin btw, so I'm not terribly optimistic. However, the situation in the US is different, in that it is still a semi-functioning democracy and there are checks and balances on the executive. He can't just do whatever he wants, he's not a dictator, yet, he just wants to be one. Whilst the danger is real and urgent, there is still hope that sanity will prevail and the world doesn't blow up in front of our eyes. Bolton's departure is perhaps a hopeful sign.
    Unfortunately, but not at all surprisingly, the "Manufactured Consent" as Chomsky puts it is in full press propaganda mode about removing Captain Chaos, that it will seem like the good old days again just to be back to the velvet glove, neo liberal, polite way of going about being empire and world dominator.

    That's the problem you see. It's time to go back to being polite about it, rather than being an ass hole about it. People in "shit hole" countries supposedly don't mind being bombed and subverted by an American leader who is well spoken, polite, easy going and smiles a lot.

    That's about what the establishment "opposition" here is all about. It's even seen here on this forum.

    Just be there in velvet, yeah and give us a smile.
    Last edited by Fred Steeves, Yesterday at 21:55.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

  22. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Fred Steeves For This Useful Post:

    Aragorn (Yesterday), Chris (Today), NotAPretender (Yesterday)

  23. #267
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    3,857
    Thanks
    14,964
    Thanked 17,180 Times in 3,852 Posts
    You seem to know better, Fred. Which is why it is incumbent upon you and others like you to truly educate, not just complain.
    "We are one thought away from changing the world!"

  24. The Following User Says Thank You to NotAPretender For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Today)

  25. #268
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
    Join Date
    1st May 2016
    Location
    East Tennessee U.S.A.
    Posts
    970
    Thanks
    1,384
    Thanked 6,008 Times in 974 Posts
    Quote Originally posted by Fred Steeves View Post
    Unfortunately, but not at all surprisingly, the "Manufactured Consent" as Chomsky puts it is in full press propaganda mode about removing Captain Chaos, that it will seem like the good old days again just to be back to the velvet glove, neo liberal, polite way of going about being empire and world dominator.

    That's the problem you see. It's time to go back to being polite about it, rather than being an ass hole about it. People in "shit hole" countries supposedly don't mind being bombed and subverted by an American leader who is well spoken, polite, easy going and smiles a lot.

    That's about what the establishment "opposition" here is all about. It's even seen here on this forum.

    Just be there in velvet, yeah and give us a smile.
    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    You seem to know better, Fred. Which is why it is incumbent upon you and others like you to truly educate, not just complain.
    This is where you continually miss the proverbial bus Adam. I'm not complaining, I'm stating the obvious for anyone with eyes to see.

    I don't have the answers, I'm just seeing the manufactured problem/reaction/solution more and more clearly as time moves along.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

  26. The Following User Says Thank You to Fred Steeves For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Today)

  27. #269
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    3,857
    Thanks
    14,964
    Thanked 17,180 Times in 3,852 Posts
    Bad choice of words then...
    "We are one thought away from changing the world!"

  28. The Following User Says Thank You to NotAPretender For This Useful Post:

    Chris (Today)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •