Faith in a just world is just that.
Over Confidence: The US Conference Board reports the US consumer has gotten over being confident and become more pessimistic about the economic outlook. “It is unlikely that sentiment will improve to truly optimistic levels until robust job creation returns and home prices stabilize.” Or Hell freezes over, whichever comes first.
Shadow Boxing: Petraeus says the US should
kill more civilians ease the rules of engagement in Afghanistan, as the US strives to win the hearts and minds of the survivors population.
Either/Or: GOP House Minority Leader John Boehner says the country is ready to scale down health-care reform and raise the retirement age to 70 “in order to pay for the war.” He didn't specify exactly which country he was talking about, but I suspect he had the US in mind.
Blame the Victims: Florida State Rep. William Snyder (R) is crafting anti-illegal-immigrant legislation modeled after Arizona's law, giving police broad powers to demand that individuals produce “proof of legal residency.” Snyder says “This is a human rights issue.” And claims the act will protect illegal immigrants from abusive employers by discouraging them from coming here to work.
Advice: "Buy yourself a learning curve..."
Follow the Bouncing Ball: Once the second largest producing oil field in the world, Mexico's Cantarell has fallen from 1,250,000 barrels a day in 2008 to below 500,000 barrels a day last month. Wonder why Saudi oil fields don't decline?
Pantomime: Don't be fooled – the BP leak is not the biggest disaster possible. Those $700 trillion in derivatives are. Sure, sure, that's just the 'notional' value. Well, what if just 1% of them get the notion to implode? That's $7 trillion and that's equal to half of a year's GDP for the US of A. Five or six percent and the entire world goes away.
Sound Familiar? Western economic theory is based on unending exponential growth fueled by the exponential consumption of fossil fuels. The assumptions at the bases of these economies are demonstrably false – and the demonstration of this falsity has already begun.
A Venue of Vultures: ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch Shell are both considering bidding for all or parts of BP as its carcass becomes available. Or at least those parts that are beyond the reach of US courts.
Squaring the Circle: In a break from their last few decisions the Supremes rejected a GOP challenge to the “soft money” contribution limits in the 2002 campaign finance overhaul. that banned corporations. While money is still 'speech', apparently only some speech is free.
Death by Gadget: So, how much violence against how many women and girls went into that iPad of yours? Or your digital camera? What's the human cost of the digital world?
Fold On Dotted Line: Fannie Mae (speaking for your friends in the banking industry) want to shame you into continuing to pay on overpriced underwater mortgage. They created this mess by being too smart for their own good. Walk away and let them show us how clever, how profitable they are with an few million overpriced, unsaleable homes on their books.
Sour Note: Amid all the blather about the necessity for belt tightening, for austerity measures, for dumping pensioners into the streets and the beneficial effect of mass suffering as countries bring their budgets under control and begin paying off their massive debts, there's this: The USA, with a giganormous national debt and matching deficit is paying less than 3% interest on it's 10 year obligations, Does that seem like the market is begging for massive reductions in US spending?
Swearing Off: A new study shows that our current atmospheric CO2 current levels (390 ppm) are sufficient to cause “significant irreversible shifts” in the Arctic, including the loss of “permanent sea and glacial ice.” That's another way of saying Greenland's ice cap will go away. And that's without any more fossil fuel use at all. None.