Wednesday, April 13, 2011

SAR #11103

Why do we think we deserve better?

Didn't Take Long: The briefly benevolent Egyptian Army has thrown a blogger in prison for three years for first-degree criticism. Habits.

Let's Just Be Friends: Pakistan is losing all interest in a long term relationship with the US. Pakistan has asked for its sovereignty back and for Obama to take back the CIA, the CIA contract killers, the Special Operations troops and most especially the damn drones. There never was a honeymoon, and apparently the check bounced.

Not Actually News: Goldman Sachs Takes Information From Its Clients And Uses It To Trade Against Them

Disgusting: An anti-gay Catholic group (yes, that's redundant) claims that what the priests have been doing all these years was not rape, nor pedophilia, nor even really wrong, because the youngsters were really participants, not victims - “they were not children and they were not raped.” Lying, for non-Republicans, is still a sin.

Most Excellent Question: Why Not a No-Fly Zone for Gaza?

I'm with Shorty: The people of Iceland still do not understand why they should have to pay the British and Dutch governments for reimbursing their own citizens for the money they lost when their ill-advised investments in an Icelandic bank went south. If that had been an Icelandic fish-stick factory, would we be having this conversation?

The Game Of Nations: Gaddafi would do well to remember that the only reason he was ever allowed to be part of the game was because he controlled Libya's oil. Blowing up the oil infrastructure may help him defeat the rebels but it will also remove him from the game. No oil, no toleration for the dictator. On the other hand, no one will care, so he can be despot for life among the ruins.

Name Game: Calling it Quantitative Easing instead of “printing money” wasn't ever going to work here. You cannot make someone drowning in debt take out another loan and companies with idle factories don't build new ones. It didn't work in Japan and it isn't working here. Now what? More, under another name. If all you've got is a hammer, the problem looks like a nail.

Consistency: The UK once again reveals that cutting wages, employment and public safety-net spending leads to lower retail sales. The worst drop in retail sales since the mid 1990s has resulted from their aggressive austerity program. Those that don't have, don't spend. Fellas in DC might make a note.

Taking it on the Chin: Populations of young chinstrap penguins are dropping rapidly due to the reduction of sea ice by global warming. Only about 10% of the youngsters survive now, compared to abut 50% 40 years ago. Apparently increased melting of sea ice leads to a decrease in krill that feed the fish the juveniles harvest, leading to an 80% reduction in survival rates.

I Remember, Mama: A new study claims that drinking alcohol primes certain areas of our brain to learn and remember better.

Cup/Lip: Fracking may provide great supplies of methane for our future energy use, but the process leads to about 5% of the extracted gas escaping into the atmosphere – and methane is far more efficient greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. So while it may burn 'cleaner' than coal, the full-cycle effect of using fracked natural gas instead of coal may be to increase, not decrease, global warming.

Sharp Stick/Eye: So far the EU has stepped in and “saved” Greece, Ireland, Portugal (and been roundly ignored by Iceland). So far it seems on a par with the salvation offered on hot summer nights in Baptist tents throughout the South. Showy, but not very long lasting nor effective.

Say Amen: “Only human beings, not corporations, are entitled to constitutional rights."

Memories: I need a little help putting a couple of incidents in perspective and would like any reader who has been to Bologna in the last 15 or 20 years and willing to answer three or four questions to contact me at the ckm3 address on


mistah charley, ph.d. said...

Welcome back.

Had you been here, you may well have called our attention to

CKMichaelson said...

Missed that one, mistah charley. But on various planes and trains and airport waiting areas I did manage to read Stiglitz's Free Fall and found myself greatly in agreement.

It is good to be back; it'll be better when the laundry and lawn get done.


Anonymous said...

Welcome back CK! Hope you feel refreshed after your travels and please know your blog updates were sorely missed...


john patrick said...

Glad you're back, CK!

Anonymous said...

Welcome back - we missed you!

Rumor said...

Welcome back, CKM. I hope you enjoyed your trip and especially enjoyed the food - I had quite a good time Bologna last year. The endless porticos tickled me pink.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back!

RE: Most Excellent Question

I wonder how the Senior Senator from Connecticut will dance around this one? Looks like "The One" snookered all the neo-cons on this one.