Monday, January 30, 2012

SAR #12030

Mankind has never been particularly adept at reading entrails.

One Step Over the Line:Lots of chatter this weekend over Greece's rejection of Germany's demand that Brussels ( that is, Germany) be given complete control over the Greek budgetary process. Let's clarify one thing: Germany does not expect this to happen. What they seem to expect (and very much seem to want) is for Greece to use this threat as a reason to default and leave the euro. And Portugal and Spain are also supposed to take the hint.

Ozymandius: Jesuit Bill Bichsel is in prison for protesting a proposed nuclear weapons plant. He is being held in solitary confinement as additional punishment because two Buddhist monks prayed for him outside the jail. The 83-year old desperado, now in his second week of a hunger strike, is forced to wear shackles for his appearances in court. Behold the power of the state.

Braking News: The US, it says here, is planning for perpetual warfare. Planning?

Money, Money, Money: Many US corporations have squirreled away impressive amounts of cash; the cash held by the NASDAQ 100's top eight companies comes to nearly nearly $300 billion. Apple, alone, has some $97 billion sitting around. Sitting around because “nothing productive or value-generating can be done with it.” Houston, do we have a problem here?

Talking Point: Define and illustrate the following: legal, moral, ethical... as in “Ethically, everything corporations do is moral as long as it is legal.” Representative Ryan (R-KY), why don't you start us off.

Proportional Response: According to Oakland storm troopers police, they were forced to use tear gas, rubber bullets, night sticks and pepper spray, injuring 4 in the process of arresting 400 #Occupy demonstrators in response to the vandalizing of three privately owned vehicles. Oakland City Council President Larry Reid said “There is no excuse for the behavior we experienced this evening.” Agreed.

Unchained Melody: Have housing prices stopped falling? No. Are they near the bottom? No. How much farther will they fall? Historically when a bubble pops, prices tend to crash far below fair market values. So says Professor Shiller, who adds that after reaching bottom there's nothing to suggest they'll start back up for a while. Quite a while.

Inevitability: As a general rule, that which cannot continue, doesn't. For example, Portugal must have an annual budget surplus of over 10% of the nation's entire GDP in order to get control of its debt. And that's if its GDP grows at 2% a year. Haircuts all 'round. Any questions?

Steady As She Goes: The United States is forging ahead with plans to further encircle China with a ring of bases extending from Afghanistan to the Philippines and on to Japan and South Korea. The US continues to make it clear that it intends to keep East Asia under its control influence and protection, despite restiveness by hundreds of thousands of Pakistanis who object to US drones killing them at random.

This Just In: Bigotry is stupid, and vice versa.

1 comment:

Demetrius said...

The Roman Empire more or less had perpetual war, as did the British, also more or less, ditto the old Spanish, the Ottoman and quite a few others. Oh dear.