Wednesday, October 31, 2012

SAR #12304

US households are not deleveraging, they're defaulting.

Learning Something: Kenya's Kenyatta University, in cooperation with Borderless Higher Education for Refugees, a Canadian and Kenyan partnership, is planning to operate a 'wireless university' to serve the more than 500,000 refugees from war and starvation huddled in the tent city of Dadaab. The idea is very nice. A refugee camp with a half-million inhabitants isn't.

Being Prepared: Camp Lemonnier in Djbouti, home to over 1,666 drone and F-15E fighter jet flights a month, is just getting started. It now houses over 1,000 Special Ops troops, and is undergoing a $1.4 billion expansion to ready for even more expanded operations over the next 25 years. The future seems to be fated to be more of the same; we keep killing them and they keep coming.

Perhaps 'No' Means 'No': Apparently reacting to pressure to allow the US to use the UK as a staging ground for bombing Iran, Downing Street has now twice publicly emphasized that “military action” is not the “right course at this time”.

Introductory Basketweaving:How are Politics, Religion, Sports and Economics alike? There is a very minimum of knowledge necessary to have an opinion on the subject. A very strong, logic- and evidence-proof opinion. That's why such talk is popular and essentially worthless, no matter what the supposed credentials of the speaker. See also...

They Know Where You're Going: Your friends at the US government are funding development of an automatic video surveillance system – for both military and civil application - that will be able to predict what people will do in the future. Like escape to another country.

Word and Deed: Peter Lilley , vice-chairman of Tethys Petroleum Ltd, an oil and gas company with operations in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, has been appointed to the House of Commons Select Committee on Energy and Climate Change. Ah, progress.

Behind the curtain: The recent “game-changing' boom in natural gas drilling via fracking is pretty much an illusion. The glut of recent gas production was initially driven not by new technologies or discoveries, but by high prices. But as prices dove from $13 per million BTU to the $3 range, frackers had to attract ever more investment capital in order to keep drilling in order to pump more gas – which only served to keep the price down. It was, and is, a Ponzi scheme.

Civics Lessen: A current AP poll shows that 56% of whites have anti-black prejudices and 57% of non-Hispanic whites have anti-Hispanic prejudices. Best I can tell, the whites don't like each other much, either.

Clarifications: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act - 'Obamacare' – is not about healthcare, nor about making health care affordable, but is an effort to make healthcare insurance affordable. That's where the Republican resistance comes in, from the threat to the healthcare insurance industriy's profits. The people in the health insurance business are neither less nor more moral than people in other business; the problem is that health insurance is a business.

The Parting Shot:


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