Not only has it come to this, but it came to this some time ago.
On the Other Hand: The deep-water oil reserves off Brazil's Atlantic coast may hold 123 billion barrels, not the previously estimated 50 billion barrels. Then again, they may not.
Housing Records: Housing completions in 2010 set a new record low at 703,000 units. The previous lows were last year's 844 thousand and 1.244 million back in 1982. In December there were only 529 thousand (seasonally adjusted annual rate) house starts, down 4.3% from November. Single-family starts decreased 9.0% in December.
It Can Happen Here: Ventura, California is moving some city facilities inland to escape the rising sea. Is it global warming, normal erosion, or the result of bad planning?
Cut & Save: Technician/chartist Tom DeMark is predicting an 'imminent' 11% drop in the market averages and says an eventual decline of 20% or more is possible.
Grocery Stopping: The global increase in food and other commodity prices should be welcomed by US investors, because it “largely reflects economic growth” (and thus more profits for speculators). Corn has hit a 30-month high, wheat prices are increasing as stockpiles shrink, and soybean prices are up in expectation of increased demand from China. India is suspending taxes on foodstuffs as prices soar and record food prices in Africa have spurred riots in several cities. A revolt seems to be brewing in Egypt, too, although there it seems more about dictatorship than food and fuel.
Please Explain: Iraq has agreed to pay people to come and find their oil and then take it away. Isn't this like paying burglars to come ransack your house? Are they using some of the US billions to do this?
Shovel Ready: The Texas AG argues the EPA should not be able to regulate CO2 because it is a naturally occurring emission of living things. Which is a load of crap, also an emission of living things, especially politicians.
Insurance Dance: Most of us agree, most of the time, that no one should be kicked to the curb and denied health care when they need it – we're not to the point of letting the poor die on public streets. Not yet. The question we do not agree upon is who should pay for this care, and how. What is the fairest way to share the burden of basic health care for our citizens? If everyone is to benefit, then all should contribute – proportional to their incomes. And if we're going to do that then we must adopt a fair, efficient system that eliminates the profit motive and unnecessary administrative costs. And that leads us to a single payer system of some type, for some degree of health care for all. Or should we just look away and walk on by?
Protecting the Guilty: A Federal appeals court has supported the Obama administrations view that letting the American people know about (have access to the transcripts and videos of) the torture conducted in their name would lead to the prosecution of many former high-ranking officials (and not a few current ones) for war crimes, so the public cannot be allowed access. That's not what the court said, just what they meant.