Crashing in Michigan, and other tidbits

I’m just back from a trip to Mich-again, by way of Atlanta. I spoke several times and consulted on a couple properties. I fell in love with Michigan and Michiganders, and my messages were generally well-received. In other words, the number of messages under the heading of “hate mail” was greatly exceeded by the number of serious conversations with generous people.

I’m in possession of a couple ginormous video files from the International Conference on
Sustainability, Transition & Culture Change
in Bellaire, Michigan. Try as I might, I’ve been unable to transfer these high-definition video files from e-chip to blog. So, if you’re interested in hearing my not-so-usual shtick, you’ll have to patiently deal with the archived livestream (a term which, at least to me, seems a bit oxymoronic and even counter-intuitive).

I spoke about breaking away from empire in a TED-style talk posted here. Later, I was featured as one of four people in a “fishbowl” and those clicks are best viewed sequentially: here, then here.

At some point perhaps I’ll manage to convert these files, and the others featuring me from the Local Future conference, to relatively clean clips. If that happens, I’ll post them at my YouTube channel and in this space. Don’t hold your breath.

On the topic of my technophobic inadequacy, I asked Carolyn Baker to write a guest essay for this space. Although she submitted me plenty of material, I’m stuck in Ludditeville, and therefore able only to include a link to her excellent piece, Welcome to Happy Valley: Occupy Penn State. The opening paragraph gives you the general direction this essay is headed:

State College, Pennsylvania, home of Penn State University, is ensconsed in a somewhat bucolic region of the commonwealth called Happy Valley. The name exquisitely connotes tranquility, American values, and the smiling faces of guileless, hard-working citizens. It is also home of the Nittany Lions, a name long synonymous with Penn State’s football team. The Nittany lion was adopted by the student body in 1907 as the official football mascot and was taken from the name of nearby Mount Nittany, which derived its name from a Native American word meaning “protective barrier.” Since then, Penn State has become synonymous with football and all of that sport’s infinite sexual connotations such as “penetration,” “tight end,” and “wide open in the end zone.”

With apologies to Carolyn — and to the rest of you — for my general sloth, indolence, and Luddite-ism, please follow the link to Carolyn’s full article. And stay tuned for future news from the former conference.

Comments 43

  • all of that sport’s infinite sexual connotations such as “penetration,” “tight end,” and “wide open in the end zone.

    Of course, sexuality is entirely in the eyes of the beholder. I often wonder about people who see sex in everything….. ;-) But admittedly, it is humorous.

  • Of course, sexuality is entirely in the eyes of the beholder

    I thought it was “Beauty lies in the eyes of the beerholder”.

  • I did borrow a bit from the language…. ;-)

  • Carolyn’s article is very readable, and I’d certainly agree with intent and direction of the article. Of late, however, I’ve been questioning the often stark delineations and attendant implied definitions people project onto other people or groups. Carolyn certainly, and rather blithely, apportions certain attributes to females and malea in an exclusive manner – females are nurturing and creative, while males are protective and generative. These identifiers are too cartoonish and definitely not attributable to any one sex. After reading these descriptors it was impossible to shake off the flaky images of the the Venus-Mars baloney that took off in popular culture no so long ago.

    I suspect if many are to survive, and indeed thrive, in the future we’ll need to measure people by their skills, practical and psycho-spiritual, without resorting to simplistic categories. In other words we’ll have to spend considerable time and effort cultivating our social radars – knowing when to join a tribe, knowing when to exclude others. This ability, imo, is an art and just takes a whole pile of experience to implement effectively.

  • An excellent article by a university professor on the militarisation of the police and the changes in attitude on the part of the police and those in authority over the past few years as a result of the ‘War on Terror’ and the ‘War on Drugs’.

    As he notes in the article, no police have arrested a banker. None have thrown a banker forcefully to the ground, beaten and cuffed him. None have pepper-sprayed a banker. And yet the bankers and the big corporations are free to rob society of its wealth and throw people into poverty and out of their homes and jobs. It is those people, those who have been forcefully discarded and thrown onto the landfill of society, who instead are the enemies of the police and the 1% they protect. It is the criminal banker who celebrates with champagne and caviare his victory over the American and global systems of government whilst his protectors, the police, pepper-spray and beat their victims.

    Yesterday, the militarization of policing in the U.S. arrived on my own campus.

    These issues go to the core of what democracy means. We have a major economic crisis in this country that was brought on by the greedy and irresponsible behavior of big banks. No banker has been arrested, and certainly none have been pepper sprayed. Arrests and chemical assault is for those trying to defend their homes, their jobs, and their schools.
    These are not trivial matters. This is a moment to stand up and be counted. I am proud to teach at a university where students have done so.

  • A very good article by Carolyn Baker. Civilisation by its nature is a vast network of abusers, their abused, and the enablers. The tools they employ to form a local abusive network are many, and include such facilities as religion, sports, entertainment, education, business, the family unit, charitable organisations, governments – yes, virtually any organisation composed of humans. The abuse of power is what it is all about, and industrial civilisation is the epitome of vehicles used to promote abusive power.

    I do not, however, share Carolyn’s view of the future. I do not by any stretch of my imagination believe that “occupiers” celebrate the demise of dominance and seize each dissolution as an opportunity for constructing the next culture. Would that be so, but I fear not. Instead, I see the OWS movement as a puss-filled excrement of an infectious social virus that is in process of destroying its host.

    The OWS, to me, is not a sign of hope, but is the last release of a society squeezed of its remaining humanity by a rapacious beast that is enveloping the world. That movement will die as it is violently ejected from the host, and we will be left with a global society bereft of real human value and beauty. Indeed, we will be left with a colossal PR image representing what used to be humanity, a massive Matrix of unreality within which those remaining live empty consumer-driven lives filled with false hopes until the last structure collapses and the damage we have done to the world takes its last victim.

  • Raintonite – you wrote “Of late, however, I’ve been questioning the often stark delineations and attendant implied definitions people project onto other people or groups. Carolyn certainly, and rather blithely, apportions certain attributes to females and malea in an exclusive manner – females are nurturing and creative, while males are protective and generative. These identifiers are too cartoonish and definitely not attributable to any one sex.”

    I too have been bothered by these male/female attributions. They are not predictive at all. Two strong women, my mother and my grandmother, ruled my childhood – I would not call them nurturing, creative, protective or generative. My grandfather was and oasis of warmth.

    Lumping people in groups is not valid, ALWAYS detracts from reality, and often hurts individuals who get characterized by whatever grouping without being evaluated for the unique human that they are.

    I remember being stunned to learn that some humans are born with both female and male genitals and confusing genes such as XXY. Society apparently didn’t (at least when I was growing up want to let this bit of info out). Children had their gender picked for them by a surgeon or parents, often with disastrous consequences. So where do these people fit – are they nurturing and creative, or are they protective and generative. (and where do they fit in the religious view of who it is OK to have sex with?)

    Here is my jaded view – humans are a pile of shit. Some humans, men, women, children, occasionally rise above it and spray a bit of bathroom spray around to make the pile not stink so bad :)

  • Victor “I see the OWS movement as a puss-filled excrement of an infectious social virus that is in process of destroying its host.”

    Can’t you put that a bit stronger :)

    I agree, they are and indication that things are getting ready to collapse. I might join if they start demanding minimum wage and health benefits for copper miners in Chile, or coltan miners in the Congo Coltan is a mineral found in cell phones. Eighty percent of the world’s coltan comes from eastern Congo.

    If the Arab spring and OWS groups ever batter down the banks that they say should share with the 99% they will find the banks empty. Our 99% have lived good lives off of the 50% in the rest of the world who labor their lives away to provide us with cell phones, Nikes, blue jeans, copper wire, etc.

    Back when the Egypt uprisings happened, many of us noted here that Egypt was about to become an oil importer rather than and oil exporter. Had the uprising really allowed the people to take over they would have been surprised to find that the wealth of the nation has already been looted. Maybe it is better to fight a fight that cannot be won, then we can blame the 1% and maybe collapse will be easier to bear with them as a scapegoat.

  • Kathy

    I didn’t mean that comment in a negative way (though it appears that way!). What I meant, and hoped to clarify a bit in the following words, was that industrial civilisation is pushing out of its body the last remaining vestige of moral and ethical virtue, represented by the OWS (and like groups around the world). To the authorities, these represent no more than puss from a minor wound, to be cleared away in an effort to cleanse the global body of negative resistance to their ultimate aims – cruel subjection of people everywhere to their economic and political power.

    I think as Collapse proceeds, we shall witness first a heavy turn to the police state and mind control in the effort to pacify and direct the population. This is already happening, and is far along in the USA where you are already living under a totalitarian government that most US citizens can not see. As the international corporations and bankers consolidate control over national governments, they will push for greater control over fiscal policies and budgets under the auspices of economic and political unions with other countries – as in Europe, Asia, North America. In order to be most effective at this, they must get control over the OWS ‘rabble’ once and for all. Remember, OWS represents not just the 90-99%, but the 1-99%. All over the world people are standing up against the 1% who continue their irresponsible and determined drive to suck wealth and power from everyone, even if it ultimately means their own destruction. It really is a disease!

    I might be wrong but I really don’t think many of those demonstrating would disagree with you that they too represent the rich when compared to poorer countries. And I don’t think you would find a lot of disagreement that we should do a better job of sharing wealth with others less fortunate. But I think where you would perhaps isolate particular causes to fight for (Coltan, Copper, et al), the OWS would say that it all has to start with the elimination of the power that the 1% exercise over the world governments. Until that issue is resolved, no other issue can ever be properly addressed. Coming down for particular and many causes has the effect of splintering the overall effort. The OWS would go for the head of the snake. Then we can talk about righting the wrongs of the world.

    Having said al that, I believe that the OWS is too little too late. The 1% (and actually it is more like the 0.01%!) is far along its path of putting all the pieces in place for the final take-over. Wealth, media control and technology will accomplish what they need.

    Dark days are coming for all of us. We are only at the beginning stages. We will go through much pain before Collapse comes.

  • Dr. McPherson should take his personal videographer along on future jaunts.

  • Robin Datta, I’m looking for a volunteer. With money of course, to pay his or her own expenses :)

  • Victor, one commentator on another site said many years back, they will only have One World Gov’t in their wet dreams. I think collapse once it starts will proceed so fast that all the plans of TPTB for police state, mind control etc will last only for the barest of times. The only thing that they really have that can affect the outcome is the Nukes. IMHO of course.

    It is hard to say what is worse, the slow collapse with all the powers of the police state put into force to keep the unhappy populace in line, or the fast collapse with the sudden removal of the police state allowing all the crazies to run free.

    you wrote ” OWS would say that it all has to start with the elimination of the power that the 1% exercise over the world governments. Until that issue is resolved, no other issue can ever be properly addressed.” I don’t really disagree. My point is that OWS came into being only when the middle class started to feel the bite. They are operating on the premise that they want to get back a fair share of the pie for themselves. They don’t understand that the pie is eaten. IF they would look at world issues, if they had ever cared who mined the minerals that make their cell phones ring, they would have been protesting long before now. They are like the Vietnam protesters who faded into middle class life when the draft ended. Unfortunately for them their is no equivalent cause they can win and go back to the good life. A small contingent never stopped after Vietnam. The protested the School of the assassins in Columbus Ga. They sat on trains carrying weapons for the war on the people of Nicaragua. And even most of those protesters never understood that the pie was shrinking and they would never win for the oppressed in the south the life they had because they life they had was never sustainable.

    We are in this mess because in fact the 1 percent have given us enough to keep us docile and most have never understood that we lived the good life on the backs of the poor and on the non-renewable resources of the planet. If there was still time for OWS to unseat the 1% before collapse, they would not save the planet. They don’t understand.

  • Opps, they sat on train tracks in front of trains carrying weapons…

  • Meanwhile “India tests long-range nuclear-capable missile”

    India on Tuesday successfully test fired one of its longest range missiles capable of carrying a one-tonne nuclear warhead deep inside China, officials said.

  • Kathy

    We can certainly agree on that point – the OWS never showed up until the pain felt by most of the world was felt by the middle class. The middle class has always been the key to revolution. As you say, as long as they are getting their portion, they are fat and happy, regardless of the rest of the world around them.

    I’m not so certain that we will ever have a ‘one world’ government, but I do believe that we will have a lot of pressure to build one coming from international banking and corporate interests. It might be something more like a federation of multiple economic regions formed from the ashes of ‘apparent financial disaster’. We shall see. What I am certain of, however, is that we will see more and more talk in the media and the governments of the world about this issue. Where it goes, who knows?

  • India on Tuesday successfully test fired one of its longest range missiles capable of carrying a one-tonne nuclear warhead deep inside China


    Methinks that we have far more to fear from the US stockpile of weapons than from anyone else. I wonder why no one in the world is objecting to the US’s programme to substantially modernise their nukes, or to Israel’s growing stockpile of advanced weaponry? Of course, I forget the privileges of Empire…

  • The uS telling Iran not to develop nukes is like a doctor with a cigarette dangling from his lips telling a patient not to smoke. 

  • Victor, yes of course we have far more to fear from our stockpile of nukes than any other country’s. But a lit fuse is the first step towards an explosion. I think if any of the smaller countries starts something, it will lead to full worldwide nuclear war.

    Robin, exactly. Yet the accusations keep coming, and sound no more plausible than the ones against Iraq. Clearly those in power have gone insane.

  • Further on OWS subject, this is worth consideration:

    Here’s the risk: Occupy ends up doing the bidding of the global elite

    History shows us it is easy for ‘grassroots’ campaigns to become co-opted by the very interests they are fighting against

    TPTB might well encourage, create and fund these movements to destroy these governments in the end, to remove from the scene those who are powerful enough to potentially say ‘No’ to their plans. Paranoid delusion? Perhaps, but the global colour revolutions would refute such a supposition, and stand as a stark example of how effective such campaigns can be.

    Quote from article:
    Although the global Occupy movement has branched out in an open-source way, many of its participants and spectators might be completely unaware of who actually launched it. Upon investigation, what one finds is a daisy chain of non-profit foundations, all tied together by hundreds of millions per year in operational funding. The original call for Occupy Wall Street came from non-profit international media foundation Adbusters. Like many non-profits, Adbusters receives its funding and operating capital from other behind-the-scenes organisations. According to research conducted by watchdog Activistcash, Adbusters takes a significant portion of its money from the Tides Foundation, an organisation partnered with one of Wall Street billionaire oligarch George Soros’s foundations, the Open Society Institute [see footnote].

    Although mostly hidden from the public eye, all major foundations and professional thinktanks undertake research and host training seminars, which are used to influence certain public and foreign policies, and thus, must have a political agenda. Theirs is the venue of choice for activities that cannot officially be conducted on the government clock.

    Freedom House is another of Soros’s Open Society partners. It supports the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (Canvas), an organisation started by Serbians Ivan Marovic and Srdja Popovic. After playing a pivotal role in the CIA-backed deposing of Serbia’s Slobodan Milosevic, the western media hailed Marovic as a democratic genius, but it came out later that his programme came out of an elite Boston thinktank’s “regime change” manual, From Dictatorship to Democracy, written by Harvard professor Gene Sharp. Sharp’s book is a bible of the colour revolutions – a “regime change for dummies”. His Albert Einstein Institution has received funds from the National Endowment for Democracy and the Open Society Foundations, and his work serves as a template for western-backed opposition leaders in soft coups all around the world.

    There are also reports of Canvas activity during the early days of Occupy Wall Street, including a video of Marovic himself addressing the general assembly. Currently, Canvas are touting their recent role in working with Egyptian and Tunisian protesters from as early as 2009, teaching skills that helped bring down their presidents and spark regional revolt.

    There are very smart people behind the scenes all over the world. To refuse to recognise this is dangerous….and perhaps a bit foolish.

  • The original Adbusters ad, published 13 July 2011.

    Do you ever feel manipulated?

    Does it feel good?…. ;-)

  • Of course the Adbusters relationship could also be one of the outcomes of an organised plot to discredit OWS by the bankers:

    Lobbying firm’s memo spells out plan to undermine Occupy Wall Street

    The memo indicates that CLGC would research who has contributed financial backing to OWS, noting that, “Media reports have speculated about associations with George Soros and others.”

    “It will be vital,” the memo says, “to understand who is funding it and what their backgrounds and motives are. If we can show that they have the same cynical motivation as a political opponent it will undermine their credibility in a profound way.”

    Do you feel manipulated?

    Does it feel good?… ;-)

  • Or perhaps the money used by Adbusters to fund the ad and various posters simply came from individual contributors to Adbusters?

    Adbusters responds to Reuters’s Soros report

    So will the REAL supporters of OWS stand and wave for us please?

  • Victor, how often are things not what they seem to be, and how do we penetrate plots within plots

    On another discussion site it was happily noted that Lech Walesa of Poland fame was coming to OWS. I had seen a movie called Strike (Strajk – Die Heldin von Danzig) about some women (combined in one) who were really the force behind the strikes that brought “freedom” to Poland. Lech sort of just latched on, then took over, then sold out. In researching more to remove some of the luster that surrounds Walesa I found this. After a bunch of accusations and controversy “In February 2011, in an interview with Monika Olejnik about the Smolensk disaster, Wałęsa finally admitted that he had signed a “commitment to cooperation” with the secret police Służba Bezpieczeństwa in 1970,[52][53][54] simultaneously downplaying the importance of the fact. Although marking a significant change of tone compared to Wałęsa’s previous statements, the declaration went relatively unnoticed, and did not receive international media coverage.” More at

  • Kathy

    I always wondered that about Walesa. Just goes to show that folks at our level NEVER know what is REALLY going on in the world of finance and politics.

    But one thing we DO know – the Earth is a limited resource, and there is no such thing as unlimited growth. Connect the dots.

  • Michigan loves you, too, Guy! We’ll welcome you back anytime. Actually, it’s a much better place to get through the coming hard times than the desert is! :-)

  • Kathy c

    “Humans are a pile of shit…”

    Don’t sugar coat it Kathy, tell us how you really feel! : )

  • As expected, the rich developed countries have thrown the climate treaty debate to the winds, now saying that no agreement is possible until at least 2020.

    Rich nations ‘give up’ on new climate treaty until 2020

    Other nations of the world as well as climate experts say this decision is both irrational and irresponsible. I couldn’t agree more, but neither am I surprised. And of course the other bit of news offered in parallel with this announcement also comes as no surprise – that carbon emissions for the period 2009-10 were worse than the worst case forecasts.

    Greenhouse gases rise by record amount

  • Architect of Reactor 3 warns of massive hydrovolcanic explosion
    Posted by Mochizuki on November 19th, 2011 · 58 Comments

    Architect of Fukushima Daiichi Reactor 3, Uehara Haruo, the former president of Saga University had an interview on 11/17/2011.

    In this interview, he admitted Tepco’s explanation does not make sense, and that the China syndrome is inevitable.

    He stated that considering 8 months have passed since 311 without any improvement, it is inevitable that melted fuel went out of the container vessel and sank underground, which is called China syndrome.

    He added, if fuel has reaches a underground water vein, it will cause contamination of underground water, soil contamination and sea contamination. Moreover, if the underground water vein keeps being heated for long time, a massive hydrovolcanic explosion will be caused.

    He also warned radioactive debris is spreading in Pacific Ocean. Tons of the debris has reached the Marshall Islands as of 11/15/2011

  • I view Carolyn Baker’s essay as deeply important to the NBL community, not because football is important [it isn’t, except as bread and circuses are important] but because it showcases a situation where unconscious reality trumps conscious reality.

    The reason people are going batshit over the locker-room scandal is not because we get upset when the lives of young people are destroyed [otherwise we would get equally angry about sending them off to Iraq and Afghanistan] but because the conflation of sex and power and the casual use of young men by old men that football ritualizes was enacted rather too literally at Penn State.

    When we wonder why we can’t get our urgent environmental messages through to friends and family members, it might be useful to examine this transformation of reality into ritual, and the steaming unpleasantness that ends up on our living-room carpet when the process is reversed. Far more institutions than football are ritualized in our culture, and at some point we can say that most of what we experience as reality is ritual practiced to the point where it creates a world constructed of theater flats. Carolyn Baker is adept at punching through the thin painted surface to what lies on the other side, so she should be taken seriously, even when she ascribes gender to anything and everything.

    Thomas Pynchon, in his book Against the Day, writes the following passage, which seems to me to illustrate what happens when intelligence is used to strip away illusion, rather than create it:

    “…[the Arctic explorer] Nansen’s plan on his final northward journey was eventually, as the total load grew lighter, to kill sled dogs one by one and feed them to the rest. At first, he reported, the other dogs refused to eat dog-flesh, but slowly came to accept it.

    “Suppose it were to happen to us, in the civilized world. If ‘another form of life’ decided to use humans for similar purposes, and being out on a mission of comparable desperation, as its own resources dwindled, we human beasts would likewise simple be slaughtered one by one, and those still alive obliged to, in some sense, eat their flesh.”

    “…Not literally, then…but we do use one another, often mortally with the same disablement of feeling, of conscience…each of us knowing that at some point it will be our own turn. Nowhere to run but into a hostile and lifeless waste.”

    “You refer to present world conditions under capitalism and the Trusts.”

    “Ape evolves to man, well, what’s the next step–human to what? Some compound organism, the American Corporation for instance, in which even the Supreme Court has recognized legal personhood–a new living species, one that can out-perform most anything an individual can do by himself, no matter how smart or powerful he is.”

  • Sure looks like the race to extinction is picking up speed. Don’t worry about making New Year’s plans for 2021.

  • i’m behind on reading the comments to this latest post. before catching up, i just wish to opine that guy is getting better with age and experience as a speaker and probably as a human being as well. that was a most impressive and well received speech in the link above. thanks.

  • The US Congress again shows its ignorant populist leanings…

    GOP Deniers Block Creation Of Climate Service

    This is simply mean-spirited –

    The National Climate Service would have allowed NOAA to meet America’s rising demand for authoritative and timely climate information. Tea Party Republicans successfully included a rider preventing its establishment in the FY 2011 continuing resolution. The reorganization would have significantly boosted the agency’s efficiency, strengthen science across NOAA, and improve delivery of vital weather and climate forecasts – at no additional cost to the taxpayer.

  • “Here You Go: It’s Over
    We’re done folks.
    CNBC is reporting that there are now clients running out of the markets entirely because they do not believe their customer funds are safe.

    That’s the end of it. The belief that there are more MF Globals has now taken hold. The thieves have pushed it too far and now we’ve got the start of a global liquidity run, and with good reason.

    The authorities both in the regulatory side and on the prosecutorial side have refused to put a stop to the thievery and now the risk factors have turned into realized risk.

    The market is done folks. You can be right but if you make your bet in the markets, are right, and then get screwed anyway when someone steals the money and nobody goes to jail there comes a time when people begin to understand that it can happen to them and will unless they depart the market.

    We’re there folks.

    Oh sure, there will be rallies and there will be selloffs. But there is no longer a market, there is no longer a thing to trade, and there is no longer a reason to believe that superior analysis will lead to profit or even safety.

    This isn’t just about speculators – it is also about farmers, shippers, airlines, manufacturing concerns, everyone in business who has a need to hedge.

    More than four years ago I said that the government had to step in and demand that both off-balance sheet games be ended permanently and in all forms and that all derivatives had to be put on an exchange, without exception, and that every dollar of underwater position had to be backed by an actual dollar of capital in real money, held and known to be safe.

    The regulators refused and now it appears that what was put up on a regulated exchange was effectively stolen.

    Well folks, then none of your investment accounts — not your IRA, 401k, not even your bank account — is safe.

    Diversification is a strategy but the risk remains. It is up to you to decide how much you’re willing to risk losing to a crook. If the answer is “none” or you cannot reduce the at-risk portion of your assets to what you’re willing to lose to fraud then you can no longer participate in the market at all, in any form, nor even do business with a bank.

    That sucks, but it is what it is and if this meme spreads — and it will until it’s stopped — we run the risk of a “sudden stop” economic event.

    I hope you’re ready for it — I am to the best of my ability, and you ought to be.”

  • Fukushima: “China Syndrome Is Inevitable” … “Huge Steam Explosions”, “Massive Hydrovolcanic Explosion” or a “Nuclear Bomb-Type Explosion” May Occur

    A very good vid at the link on what is happening that the Western Press is not reporting.

  • Victor wrote:
    “OWS would say that it all has to start with the elimination of the power that the 1% exercise over the world governments. Until that issue is resolved, no other issue can ever be properly addressed.”

    Isn’t that a good reason to promote Deep Green Resistance?

    I’m not willing to throw in the towel yet, b/c I suspect failure to stand up to these corrupt dirtbags all but guarantees nuclear war at some point. That WILL destroy Earth’s ecosystem; anything short of that gives Earth a chance to recover, even if it takes a few million years (as previous mass extinctions did). If we’re on the way out as a species, we can at least use our remaining time here to fight for the chance of future species to evolve…

  • Kathy, that ticker caught my eye as well. Karl normally hedges what he says, this could happen, or the result may be, but this time he held nothing back.

    Thanks for saving the Fukishima article. I kept meaning to read it but it’s gone from ZH front page.

    Seems like just when you thought things can’t get much worse, they do it with a bang.

    This one looks good:

  • Petition Presentation, Town of Chapel Hill, NC, November 21, 2011.

    Opening remarks…….

    In Chapel Hill and around the world, it is all the same: many too many people can be found in too many places destroying the natural world for personal economic gain. Many human-induced pressures on Earth’s finite resources and its frangible ecology, that directly result from the unbridled global growth of overconsumption, overproduction and overpopulation activities by the human species, put demands on the natural world that can overwhelm any efforts to achieve a sustainable future for children, not only in Chapel Hill but elsewhere on the surface of our planetary home. If we are to halt the reckless destruction of Earth as a viable resource base as well as the irreversible degradation of an already polluted environment and a warming climate, we must accept limits to growth.

    We must start somewhere soon to chart a sustainable course. Endless economic and population growth appear to be unsustainable. Let us consider now and here ways we can humanely, fairly, equitably and realistically define limits to economic and population growth in Chapel Hill, while there is still time to do so. Once the comfortable and friendly size of Chapel Hill is lost due to economic and population growth pressures, Chapel Hill’s quality of life and special characteristics will be impossible to regain.

    Perhaps we can “think globally” about the predicament seven billion human beings present to the viability of Earth as a fit place for human habitation. Then we choose to”act locally” in ways that move us in the direction of a sustainable future for children everywhere and for life as we know it. Thank you.


    A Petition to Define Limits to Economic and Population Growth in the Town of Chapel Hill, NC

    Whereas the Town of Chapel Hill appears to be outgrowing the comfortable and friendly size that has made it a wonderful place to live, raise children, work and retire; and
    Whereas increasing traffic congestion, crime and other social ills are presenting worrisome trends that result from human population growth which will eventually degrade Chapel Hill’s eco-friendly environs, deplete its limited natural resources and conceivably ruin what makes our town beautiful and special; and
    Whereas the Town of Chapel Hill has established limits and the Great State of North Carolina has boundary lines that separate it from adjacent states; and
    Whereas the USA has borders that confirm the limits of authorized human activity under its regulations and laws as well as distinguish itself as a separate nation; and
    Whereas Earth is round, bounded and finite with frangible environs not flat, unbounded and unperturbed by human production, consumption and population activities of the human species worldwide; and
    Whereas there are well-known biological and physical “rules of the house” in our planetary home that are categorically different from the manmade laws which regulate day to day production, consumption and population activities of human species, but are no less important to citizens of Chapel Hill, the State of NC and the USA as well as to the global citizenry of the human family, precisely because the biophysical reality of God’s Creation places immutable limits on the unbridled global growth of human overproduction, overconsumption and overpopulation activities; and
    Whereas a billion human beings were added to family of humanity worldwide in the last dozen years (1999 to 2011); and
    Whereas in the month of October 2011 the seven billionth human being joined the human community; and
    Whereas there are more human beings in November 2011 existing on resources valued at less than two dollars per day globally than were alive on Earth in the year of my birth (2.3+ billion in March 1945); and
    Whereas we have heard many times, understood well enough, and can reasonably be expected to at least consider acting in a morally responsible way upon a shibboleth of humanity that goes like this, “Think globally, act locally,”

    Now, Therefore, It appears appropriate to Propose and Present this brief Summary of a Program for Action.

    As a part of the town-wide envisioning process to consciously and deliberately manage economic and population growth in the Town of Chapel Hill between now and 2020, leaders, planners and stakeholders will assure that the maintenance of the unique character and the quality of life in Chapel Hill, as we enjoy it now, is protected and preserved for the children and future generations. To accomplish this goal, various scenarios or different elements of a single scenario will be developed with the hope that the following steps will be examined for their efficacy.

    Because overpopulation is ultimately a local issue, set an optimum/maximum population size for the Town of Chapel Hill in 2020. This goal can be fulfilled by adopting growth-management policies related to limits on the number of new residential dwelling units and to additional eco-friendly curbs on commercial developments per year between now and 2020. Zoning regulations can be promulgated to further restrict the size of residential, commercial and industrial buildings within the town limits. The reality-oriented adoption of “soft caps” on economic and population growth will make it possible for the Town of Chapel Hill to sensibly acknowledge and adequately address the considerable and potentially unsustainable growth pressures that are readily visible on our watch.

    Steven Earl Salmony

  • Now, Therefore, It appears appropriate to Propose and Present this brief Summary of a Program for Action.

    Is the “program for action” voluntary, or is it also proposed that it should be enforced by the threat of the initiation of force against peaceful non-compliers? If the option to initiate the use of force is retained, is there a concomitant claim of moral rectitude in retaining such an option, or is its moral turpitude acknowledged?

  • backed by an actual dollar of capital in real money

    Actually, “money” is “symbols”, and what it represents are useable physical items and/or natural resources from which those items are made. Even services that are proffered in exchange for money are done so with the expectation that the money can be redeemed in usable physical items or natural resources. 

  • Gus you wrote “I’m not willing to throw in the towel yet, b/c I suspect failure to stand up to these corrupt dirtbags all but guarantees nuclear war at some point.”

    That assumes that those who take over upon the removal of the dirtbags will be any different than the dirtbags. History seems to tell us that “power corrupts”. If they take over and discover that nukes are the only way to keep the disparity between the rest of the world and the first world, they will realize that the promises made to OWS movement cannot be fulfilled without keeping up that disparity and what better to do that with than nukes. We might move some of the 0’s out of the dirtback bank accounts into the bank accounts of the middle class, but without the raw materials that we rip off from the rest of the world the 0’s will have nothing in front of them. And without that they are just zero….

  • I suspect the warm reception from Michigan is because they are closer to the edge than many other parts of the US. Michael Moore’s home town, Flint, is bulldozing half the town that has been standing empty. In Detroit, it is possible to buy useable houses for $1.

    If anyone is interested in the future of the US, they should look to the “rust belt” states like Michigan.