Wednesday, June 11, 2008

SAR #8163

Complex systems inevitably collapse.
Richard Heinberg

Terms: According to reports from Shiite Iraqi politicians, the US wants 58 bases as part of a treaty that will let the US occupy Iraq indefinitely. "Indefinitely" is different than "permanently", or so the US claims.

Cover: Remember when a "rendition" was Burl Ives singing a Bing Crosby song? Seems like Bush & Co haven't given up snatching people off the street and hiding them in warships, just changed the location where the citizenry are in danger: now it's the Horn of Africa.

Walter Winchell, Not: The Canadian Navy spent three-quarters of its time in port last year, as fuel prices increased 50%. This year they'll join the yacht club and stay in the marina. Certainly cuts down on "all the ships at sea."

Better Late Than: It seems possible the world - outside of the Fed and Wall Street - is noticing inflation creeping out from under the bed. It may be "a wee bit of a problem" for it is less than beneficent for investments.

Solvents and Solvency: Commissioner Brian Montgomery says the FHA expects to lose $4.6 billion because of "unexpectedly high default rates on home loans". Montgomery insisted the "FHA is solvent.” They've only taken a solvent to the books.

One Damned Thing After Another: First too much corn was being diverted for ethanol. Then global demand for grain increased and the shortfall was worse. Now Iowa - which is all corn all the time - is too soggy for the corn to germinate and replanting will have to wait for drier fields and then the season will be too far along.... Yields may fall by 10%, which is not good news for anyone, anywhere.

Fad Diet: If ewes eat diets heavy in polyunsaturated fats prior to conception, chances of giving birth to male offspring increase significantly.

Things Not Thought About: Oil at $130 a barrel makes people in the US worry about the price of gasoline. They ought to worry about the increasing costs to haul heavy products from wherever to the home of the mortgaged and the land of the service economy. Everything made in the heavy industries in India and China will be more expensive due to transportation costs, and the US doesn't have any factories, anymore. Ah, progress, globalization, outsourcing, the bright and shining future!

Sweet Sixteen: Consumer Reports has put out a list of good models of used cars to consider if economy is more important to you than pride.

Everything's Connected #47: New Zealand's long drought is emptying the lakes used to drive hydro-electric plants, causing goal and gas-fired power plants to pick up the slack. Thus their output of CO2 is 50% higher than normal. Global warming causes drought that causes CO2 emissions that cause climate warming.

Quoted: America, the land where people can no longer afford to pay for the gas they need to drive to the jobs they work to pay for the homes they can no longer afford.

Setting Limits : Mother nature sets the limits. Continuous economic growth is not possible. The food crisis and peak oil both expose the limits of the 'growth is good' mantra. It's not nice to fool mother nature.

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