Tuesday, February 8, 2011

SAR #11039

The Age of Enlightenment had a good run.

Muslim Egyptian Brotherhood:  For all the fears in DC, in Tahrir Square Egyptians seem to be Egyptians first. Christians (mainly Coptics) stood guard over Muslims at prayer. Muslim youth protect Christians at prayer and their churches. Sunday's Sermon was ““In the name of Jesus and Muhammad ..” After all, Mubarak was an equal opportunity despot, persecuting everyone.

The Jones's:  Obama proposes to give $7,500 directly to folks who buy an electric car. He is going to go door to door in their neighborhood, collecting from the neighbors, I guess.

Double (for them) and Nothing (for you) :  Today the United States government guarantees losses from nearly all mortgage loans (and the securities based on them) for the lenders. It provides nothing (except tax deductions on mortgage interest) to the borrowers. Therein lie the basis for the Great Recession and the rest of our current economic turmoil. Guess who wants the same system to be perpetuated? Right, everyone from your local realtor to the executive offices on Wall Street - the same banks that were bankrupt until taxpayers' money rescued them so they could get back to grabbing record billions in bonuses. They want to do it all again, and why not, it's not their money.

Extra! Extra!  Egypt's largest newspaper, safely under Mubarak's thumb for decades, has cast him aside and declared its support for the uprising.

Words In A Certain Order:  The Secretary of the Air Force has instructed all members of the US Air Force that they and their families may not read any of the WikiLeaks documents, nor reports based on them. Also, in that to do so is to violate Title 18 of the US Code (espionage), members have a duty to report family members who violate this rule.

Quoted:  “The real economy is so detached from the one presented by official data and the stock market that "growth", explosive or modest, is a matter of managed perception, not reality.”

Good News:  The recent cyclones have devestated Australian sugar crops and a world-wide shortage is possible. Except in the US, where high-fructose corn syrup will save the day. Well, unless we need more ethanol for the cars.

Quod Erat Demonstrandum:  The question is, will Mexico collapse? Perhaps, for much like Egypt, Mexico is facing a rapid increase in the price of staples (corn up 52%, wheat up 47%) while the country's oil revenue continues to fall. Both are facing serious population pressures. Add in similar levels of corruption and extreme inequality, plus the drug cartels' control of much of the country, and it begins to look like a sure thing.

Enron End Run:  The Texas Public Utility Commission is investigating the convenient price surge in electricity last week, just as a deep cold spell sent demand zooming.

Geography Lesson:  Baluchistan is the large province that makes up most of Pakistan's south-western territory. Most Baluchis would rather not be part of Pakistan, which they view – quite correctly – as an occupying power. The ongoing unrest in the area, which borders on both Iran and Afghanistan, makes both the proposed Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline and the long desired Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline problematic.

One Stop Service:  Homeland Security continues to seize websites in its continuing effort to protect copyrights. Terrorists? Certainly, for anyone who deprives the copyright holder of revenue is, ipso facto, a terrorist.


Anonymous said...

RE: One Stop Service

Why am I becoming convinced that there is little difference between Egypt and the US anymore. I know Egypt has been under emergency powers for 30 years and we've only been under them for ten, but we're getting closer.

P.S. How come the renewal of the patriot act has come with no debate from the talking heads on either the right or left?


CKMichaelson said...

RBM: What a great question for a self-defining discussion! Sit around the coffee shop and try to figure it out. First ideas, of course, would be wrong or incomplete, conspiracy theories would entail too much pressure on too many people... it'd be like trying to explain Political Logic.

My first suggestion would be knee-jerk conformity to what the pols 'think' the pepple want. Thoughtless gutless pandering to a misperception. Fear of the "Who lost China" attack.


Anonymous said...

Good News: The recent cyclones have devestated Australian sugar crops and a world-wide shortage is possible....

Is sugar a "food"? Most non_Racketeering Doctors would consider the absence of sugar in one's diet to be a good thing.

Of course, since our Industrial Poisonous "Food" System is, in part, based on cheap and addictive sugar, there could be a big economic whammy. Riots breaking out at all those FF drivethroughs.