Friday, August 12, 2016
The Why We Are: Without rising energy per capita, the world economy tends to shrink. Without economic growth, it becomes very difficult to repay debt with interest. Wealth disparity becomes more and more of a problem, and it becomes increasingly difficult for governments to collect enough revenue to support their needs. Our problems begin to look more and more like those of earlier economies that hit resource limits and ... collapsed.
Clip & Save: The Pentagon claims that ISIS has less than 15,000 fighters left and is in “retreat on all fronts.” They used to say that about al Qeada and the Taliban, too.
The Harvest: Answering their president's directive, Philippine police say they have arrested, tried and executed over 500 suspected drug dealers in the last month. Well, executed; the arrest and trial part weren't necessary.
Yes He Did: Trump first said Hillary was responsible for the rise of ISIS, then he corrected himself and said it was Obama.
Road Narrows, Then Ends: There is strong support for exit votes in at least 16 of the 28 member countries of the EU. The issue now is not whether some other country exit will the EU, but which one will be next, and next after that. The EU will not survive. Not “will not survive in its current iteration,” but simply will not survive. The EU attempt to establish a federalist European superstate has failed. The only question now is how unpleasant the endgame will be.
Starting Point: A new Indonesian law calls for the castration of convicted
Strictly: Saying there is no such thing as “medical marijuana,” and after closely examining the effect reclassifying marijuana would have on its budget, the DEA has decided to continue prosecuting folks for getting high.
Wrong In So Many Ways: The General in charge of US troops in Afghanistan has asked India for military assistance in Afghanistan. Pakistan will, of course, give fully armed Indian troops free passage through their territory.
Mind The Gap: Deutsche Bank failed its annual “stress test,” coming up short by €19 billion, which is more than its entire market capitalization.
Some of the Truth: With an echo from the Dick Cheney/Iraq era, US Central Command senior officers have been caught altering intelligence reports to portray the US fight against ISIS and al Qaeda in “a more positive light than was warranted by the facts on the ground.” Major General Steven Grove and his deputy were found to have deleted emails and files from computer systems before the inspector general could examine them. Reminds me of the time a US Army General, in the midst of an intel briefing told me “That may be true, but I don't want to hear it.”
A Stitch In Time: The Israel's Knesset is considering a law that would exempt Netanyahu from criminal prosecutions.
The Parting Shot:
Posted by Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III at 7:33 AM