October 31, 2011

Stop Thinking Like Dinosaurs

Film frames from the 2009 documentary 

Excerpt from an interview with Michael C. Ruppert in the movie Collapse, 2009:

"Let's suppose for the sake of discussion that there's 600 billion barrels in the Arctic. First of all, it happens to be under the polar ice cap. That's a problem. ... That's why a lot of conservative think tanks and oil companies are cheering the melting of the polar ice caps."

On October 23, 2011, Joel E. Cohen wrote in an Op-Ed titled Seven Billion for the New York Times:

"One week from today, the United Nations estimates, the world's population will reach seven billion. Because censuses are infrequent and incomplete, no one knows the precise date - the Census Bureau puts it somewhere next March - but there can be no doubt that humanity is approaching a milestone.

The first billion people accumulated over a leisurely interval, from the origins of humans hundreds of thousands of years ago to the early 1800s. Adding the second took another 120 or so years. Then, in the last 50 years, humanity more than doubled, surging from three billion in 1959 to four billion in 1974, five billion in 1987 and six billion in 1998. This rate of population increase has no historical precedent.

Can the earth support seven billion now, and the three billion people who are expected to be added by the end of this century? Are the enormous increases in households, cities, material consumption and waste compatible with dignity, health, environmental quality and freedom from poverty?"

On October 31, 2011, Seth Borenstein wrote in an Associated Press article titled Skeptic finds he now agrees global warming is real:

"A prominent physicist and skeptic of global warming spent two years trying to find out if mainstream climate scientists were wrong. In the end, he determined they were right: Temperatures really are rising rapidly.

The study of the world's surface temperatures by Richard Muller was partially bankrolled by a foundation connected to global warming deniers. ..."

"One-quarter of the $600,000 to do the research came from the Charles Koch Foundation, whose founder is a major funder of skeptic groups and the tea party. The Koch brothers, Charles and David, run a large privately held company involved in oil and other industries, producing sizable greenhouse gas emissions."

Hmm, what gives with this sanctioned carrot from the Koch Foundation? Are our industrialists and politicians setting the stage to 1) finally confirm to the citizens of the world that things might possibly be really, really, really FUBAR and 2) sell us on their magic cure-all to the planet's energy supply issues and environmental nightmares?

To quote Michael C. Ruppert - "this is some serious fucking shit."

October 27, 2011

Theirs Not To Do And Die, Theirs But To Reason Why

YouTube video posted by AssociatedPress showing 
riot police in Oakland, CA confronting Occupy 
Oakland (in support of Occupy Wall Street) 
demonstrators on the evening of October 25, 2011

In 1854, the poet Lord Alfred Tennyson wrote The Charge of the Light Brigade to praise a cavalry's unquestioning suicidal charge into "glory" during the Crimean War. Most readers remember the lines "Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die." When analyzing the power structures of life however, I personally prefer to flip the lines to read instead "Theirs not to do and die, Theirs but to reason why."  

If only everyone would learn to question more. 

. . . . . . . .

The Charge of the Light Brigade 
by Lord Alfred Tennyson

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!" he said:
Into the valley of Death 
Rode the six hundred.

"Forward, the Light Brigade!"
Was there a man dismay'd?
Not tho' the soldier knew
Some one had blunder'd:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death 
Rode the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.

Flash'd all their sabres bare,
Flash'd as they turn'd in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
All the world wonder'd:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro' the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel'd from the sabre-stroke
Shatter'd and sunder'd.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro' the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wonder'd.
Honor the charge they made!
Honor the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred!

October 19, 2011

A Return To Legality

Daily Ticker interview on Yahoo with Jeffrey D. Sachs, 
author of The Price of Civilization

October 17, 2011

Wherever There's A Fight

Scene from The Grapes of Wrath, 1940 
starring Henry Fonda as Tom Joad 
and Jane Darwell as Ma Joad.
YouTube video posted by garfrain

Excerpt from Paul Krugman's Op-Ed piece titled Losing Their Immunity from the October 16, 2011 edition of the New York Times:

"You see, until a few weeks ago it seemed as if Wall Street had effectively bribed and bullied our political system into forgetting about that whole drawing lavish paychecks while destroying the world economy thing. Then, all of a sudden, some people insisted on bringing the subject up again.

And their outrage has found resonance with millions of Americans. No wonder Wall Street is whining."

. . . . . . . . 

From the Reader's Recommendations of comments to Mr. Krugman's writing, a Mr. Paul Schmidt writes:

"When events of the magnitude of the great Recession come along, there’s always a familiar arc.

Act I is always The Bailout Phase. In this phase the Masters of the Universe call in their chips with their bought and paid for politicians and the public fronts up the money.

Act II is the We Got Away with IT phase. This phases always lasts 2-3 years. In this phase history is re-written, the politicians declare it was all a mistake and the Masters of the Universe make sure no form of control is successfully implemented.

Then comes Act III. Act III always lags Acts I & II by two to three years. This act always surprises both the politicians and the bankers, as 2 to 3 years later in both professions is a life time. What they don’t understand is that Acts I & II are only possible because the public still has faith in its institutions – they believe justice will be done.. eventually. When its clear that it won’t, 2-3 years later - then the people mobilise, usually lead (of course), by the young and silly.

So now Act III begins. Expect to see police brutality, prosecution of a few small fish (and lots of protesters of course), while the Masters flail around impotently and their political employees up the propaganda and try to portray Act III as something that its not, an attack on democracy or whatever.

The fina is always Act IV or The Great Dawning. Here politicians suddenly realise that Act III isn’t going to go away and that unless they abandon the Masters they’ll lose their jobs as well. Act IV is characterized by politicians furiously swapping sides as fast they can re-write history and we suddenly discover they were all secretly on the public’s side all the time.

Under Act IV the political classes at last act like adults, regulations are passed, laws are enforced and the public see justice at last (until the lessons of the past are unlearned yet again, say in another 50 years).

So roll on Act III, or as we sometimes call it, 1937 Yet Again."

October 14, 2011

A New Day And A New Way Of Thinking

Excerpt from The Pastures of Heaven by John Steinbeck, first published in 1932 by Brewer, Warren & Putnam:

Mrs. Munroe turned helplessly to the teacher. "What's wrong with him anyway?"

"I think he was embarrassed," said Miss Morgan.

"But why should he be? We were nice to him."

The teacher tried to explain, and became a little angry with them in trying. "I think, you see - why, I don't think he ever knew he was poor until a moment ago."

YouTube video of the Occupy Wall Street 
commercial posted by dsauvage

> Follow this link to the We Are The 99 Percent website.