“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Saturday, October 15, 2011

This May Not End Well

"This video is “laugh out loud” funny. Sort of George Orwell meets kindergarten class."

Worldwide 'Occupy' protests held over financial crisis

Protesters took to the streets in Sydney, Tokyo and Taipei

Related Stories

Protesters in cities across the world are taking to the streets to demonstrate against alleged corporate greed and government cutbacks.
Organisers say rallies will be held in 951 cities in 82 countries from Asia and the Americas, to Africa and Europe.
Hundreds of people have already protested in Australia and New Zealand as well as other Asian cities.
Many protest groups are taking their names from the high-profile Occupy Wall Street rally in New York.
Organisers of the 15 October worldwide protests said on their website that the aim was to "initiate the global change we want".
"United in one voice, we will let politicians, and the financial elites they serve, know it is up to us, the people, to decide our future," it said.
In the Australian city of Sydney, some 2,000 people - including representatives of Aboriginal groups, communists and trade unionists - took to the streets outside the central Reserve Bank of Australia, Reuters news agency reports.

Economic protests

  • Original protest began on 15 May in Spain, badly hit by economic crisis
  • Sit-in at Madrid's Sol Square became a weeks-long protest camp
  • Israel also hit by summer of protests over high cost of living. Protest camp in Tel Aviv
  • Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protest began in New York in September with small number of activists but soon grew to 1,500
  • OWS organisers say they are defending 99% of US population against wealthiest 1%
  • OWS used as model for global protests
Around 1,000 people gathered in Melbourne, and hundreds were marching in the New Zealand cities of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
'Occupy' protests were also being held in South Korea, the Phillipines and in Hong Kong.
As many as 1,500 people had said, via Facebook, they would participate in the "Occupy Taipei" protest planned outside Taiwan's tallest building.
The BBC's Cindy Sui in Taipei says such a demonstration is unusual for Taiwan, which has a tradition of looking to family rather than the state for welfare support.
But, our correspondent says, the island's wealth gap is at its worst in history and many middle-class Taiwanese have begun to question whether the system is fair.
Large protests are expected later in the day in the European cities of Madrid, London, Rome and Athens.
It remains to be seen if any of the demonstrations turn into protest camps, such as Occupy Wall Street, which began with a small group of activists in New York's financial district a couple of months ago and has now grown to include several thousand people at times, from many walks of life.
Naomi Colvin, an organiser of the protest outside the London Stock Exchange, said the nature of the rally would be dependent on those that turn up.
"We take the position that we will convene a general assembly in London and like all the other protests which have happened elsewhere, it is the general assembly which is the decision-making body," she told the BBC.
"If the general assembly, made up of everybody who comes today, decides that we want to try and stay, then we will make some efforts to try and stay."
Protests over the global crisis first began in the Spanish capital Madrid back in May, when hundreds took over the city's Puerta del Sol square.
Forming a movement called "Indignant", the protesters said they wanted to demonstrate at the influence of powerful financial institutions over policy-making, and the impact of Spain's deepest economic crisis in decades.
Observers say that, while protesters in Spain had concrete demands such as seeking a cut in working hours to tackle unemployment, many of the 'Occupy' protesters are vague in their demands.


  1. Bloomberg is such a sick dumb fuck.
    Could declare it a health menace, burn their tents, and flush the turds down the drain.

    Instead, he puts out the Welcome mat.

    Rudy said what he'd do, but I forgot.

  2. Carolla Interviews Comedian Kumail Nanjiani

    Comedian Kumail Nanjiani then joins the podcast, and Adam asks him about being born and raised in Pakistan. They also discuss the recent explosion of Middle Eastern comics, and Kumail talks about his journey to Iowa to attend college. The group then asks Kumail about some of the Muslim practices he was raised to follow, and Adam complains about people trying to follow their dreams.

    Kumail drops in a little antisemitism.
    Maybe he could be the Club Comedian?

    The Indoor Kids

  3. This is an extraordinary and remarkable video. I have never seen anything quite like this.

  4. As in all of these types of movements, how they start and the way they continue , and who ends up in charge is unpredictable. If Obama and the Democrats thought they will swoop in, take political advantage of this "occupy movement", and back to same old, same old, they are in for a dissapointment.

    John Lewis, the big black snore, thought he would do his usual shuck and jive "I was there" speech. Noooo. This crowd voted him down from speaking. He left without saying a word. Look at his face!

    Watch the video. Look at John Lewis' face. The crowd told him," thanks for stopping by, but you are part of the problem."

    Sports fans, get ready to rumble!

  5. A 10-minute video clip of U.S. Rep. John Lewis‘ unsuccessful attempt to address the Occupy Atlanta gathering in Woodruff Park is burning up the blog and Twittersphere.

    To put it mildly, it’s not going over well in some circles.

    To #occupyatlanta General Assembly. You are a bunch of (blank)heads. Congressman John Lewis is an American hero,” tweeted hip hop industry mogul and activist Russell Simmons. He supports the Wall Street protestors that spawned Occupy Atlanta, though, tweeting more recently, “White people catch a cold blacks get pneumonia. We must join in #occupywallstreet. Education and health care cut while rich get richer.”

    Jay Smooth, a hip hop DJ in New York, tweeted, “Disappointed to hear that John Lewis was not allowed to speak at #OccupyAtlanta. Hoping organizers will hear feedback and learn from it.”

    The video clip of the protesters discussing the matter, and of Lewis leaving without speaking, has been gathering steam online. As of about 11:15 a.m. today it had logged more than 180,000 views on YouTube. In the clip, the protestors discuss the matter by repeating phrases, vote by waving their hands and ultimately decide that Lewis should come back later. At one point someone off camera shouts “John Lewis is no better than anyone else!”

  6. {…}
    Lewis had been en route to a Pride event when he stopped by Woodruff Park.

    “They didn’t really deny me,” Lewis said. The protestors decided he could return after their agenda items had been completed, but because of the Pride event, Lewis didn’t have time to wait around. The group has since issued a statement saying, “We are dismayed that anything we have done would seem to show disrespect for a man whom many of us revere, and apologize to everyone who was hurt or angered by our actions.” And they say Lewis can come back.

    Lewis said he was not dismayed, despite his key role in the nation’s struggle for civil rights, that he was not more eagerly received when he initially stopped by the park.

    “These are different times,” he said.

    - Jennifer Brett/The Buzz/

  7. Some of the comments on the previous article.

    October 10th, 2011
    8:19 am

    He should not have been surprised that they didn’t want to hear from him. After all he is one of the people who worked so hard to get us in this mess. Remind me what has he done in Congress in the last 30 years other than occupy a seat?


    Arrogance knows no bounds
    October 10th, 2011
    8:30 am

    John Lewis has been in Congress seemingly forever. He has faced no real opposition since his election. To allow this man to speak about struggle of any kind would be an exercise in nostalgia only. He is completely irrelevant to today’s issues, as the poster above notes.

    The truly sad part of the Wall Street and Occupy Atlanta protests is how clueless most of the participants are. They feel powerless, unproductive. In the ultimate irony, their solution is to use the power of the state to confiscate the property and labor of others hoping that the courtiers in Washington will give them a slice of the booty. Trading current misery for dependence and inefficiency will be their legacy.


    October 10th, 2011
    8:34 am

    Hate to say it, but he tried to stick his face into this and got the door slammed in it. This isn’t the first time this political oppotunist has hijacked a gathering of people. He did the same thing after 9/11 and didn’t add a thing to the discussion. The man really hasn’t done anything lately but pick up awards for stuff he did 40 years ago. What have you done for us lately, Lewis?


    October 10th, 2011
    8:38 am

    why would anyone want to listen anyone who is part of the “do nothing Congress”. he is part of the problem, NOT the solution. people who think that they are “owed” a place in Congress due to their previous actions should be thrown out. just what has he done for America in his 30 years of being a politician. earn your place or get out of the way!!!

  8. Jackie Robinson = Hero to Us All
    October 10th, 2011
    8:43 am

    These Occupy Atlanta nutjobz are pretty much clueless about American & American Civil Rights History, but apparently even THEY had heard enough the cumulative speeches of Congressman Lewis to know he was just going to tell them to blame all of the world’s problems on those “Wight Wing Wepublicans.”


    October 10th, 2011
    8:44 am

    Political opportunist, not unlike al sharpton and jesse jackson. He has never done anything credible other than civil rights marches. I applaud him for that. The flea party is just enjoying a smokefest, it will be over in a couple of days with less than a thousand parasites ever having been involved.


  9. Paul From Milton
    October 10th, 2011
    8:46 am

    None of these guys get it. It isn’t a black/white thing or a Democrat vs. Republican thing. It’s a have vs. have not thing. Lewis, Simmons, etc. are the establishment. They are the “have” guys. It’s the same reason Rep. Rangel was shouted down by Occupy Wall Street. He represents the establishment.

  10. Lewis and Rangel,
    Those kids can't be all bad.

  11. Burglars turn in man after finding child porn stash during break-in ...

    Oct 6, 2011 – DELHI, Calif. -- A man was out on bail Thursday after being turned in to police by burglars who discovered a stash of child porn when they ...

    Stockard was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography but released from Merced County Jail after making his $25,000 bail.

    The 54 year old had previously reported the CDs stolen, according to Merced County Sheriff's Department.

    "I'm kind of surprised that he wanted to draw attention to himself, knowing what was taken," said deputy Tom McKenzie.

    The two burglars were not arrested but the case has been passed to the district attorney's office for review.

    "We did not actually go out and arrest the suspects for the burglary. They were obviously the lesser of two evils," McKenzie added.

    Read more:

  12. The First Darwin Award Weiner in the Kiddie Porn Division.

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. Nanjiani says any kind of porn would land you in Hell, whacking off to kiddie porn a special place there.

    Too bad the Saudi 19 partied down before shaving their balls for that last flight.

    Hell, or Raisins...
    You decide.

  15. Adam says they must have taken cd players and burners too 'cause grandpa said you can't hold a cd in your hands and beat off to it!

  16. Also, in the video. Notice the guys with the "Union Thug" tee shirt.

  17. A man has smashed the world record for riding a unicycle along a line of beer bottles, in Tel Aviv, Israel.

    Lutz Eichholz, a 25-year-old unicyclist from Germany, managed to ride along 8.93 metres of beer bottles ...

  18. It'll take the deft hand of Chi-town Community Organizers, to surf this wave.

    It's a "New Age" thing, not an replay of "Old School" civil rights marchers.

    Over 50% of the public view the Occupying Forces, favorably.

    Just one reason why an elected official, like Mayor Bloomberg, does not take the actions prescribed by an unelected private citizen, one that is not accountable to the public.

  19. Read somewhere that those Union Thug folks are paid employees on a mission for the unions.

  20. Naw, he didn't do it 'cause he's a Putz.

  21. 400,000 some folks "Occupied" Israel and all they got was a unicyclist and a POW returned.

    One small step for man
    A giant leap for mankind.

  22. No, doug, Mr Bloomberg is a 1%er, and has deep internal guilt.

    Guilt that he knows he deserves to bear.

    Rudy, he dreams of being a 1%er.
    He does not like to see his fantasy abused.

  23. Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani told Sean Hannity on his talk show yesterday that, if he was still mayor, he would have told the "Occupy Wall Street" protesters, “You are not allowed to sleep on the streets.”

    On his show, Hannity asked Giuliani how he would have dealt with the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement if he was still mayor of New York City - to which Giuliani replied, “Well I had a rule and I enforced it as best I could and pretty effectively. The rule was: You’re not allowed to sleep on the streets. Sorry, not allowed to sleep on the streets. Streets are not for sleeping.”

    “Sleeping on the streets is a dysfunctional act. It harms the person, it harms society, it leads to unsanitary conditions that affect public health,” added Giuliani. “The first one who decided to sleep there should have been removed and then the second one, and the third one, and the fourth one and the fifth one.”

    “They can protest during the daytime if they want to, but if you want to stay over in New York City overnight, you got to rent a room, and if you’re homeless we got plenty of shelters for you,” said Giuliani.

  24. Sure did a Hell of a job of cleaning up Linsey/Dems legacy.

    Now Putzberg fucks it back up.

  25. “Sleeping on the streets is a dysfunctional act. It harms the person, it harms society, it leads to unsanitary conditions that affect public health,”

    Just the truth, nuthin but the truth.

  26. And Rudy would have be lying.

    In June of 2002 there were 7,912 homeless families acknowledge by the authorities, living on the Streets of New York City.

    Just a year after his tenure was finished.

    Can't find figures for the year 2000, the apogee of his term.

  27. From an AP article today:
    "Over the past month, the protest against corporate greed and economic inequality has spread from New York City to cities elsewhere across the United States and around the world."

    A red movement?

  28. But guaranteed it dd not go from 0 to 7,912 in a single year.

  29. No, not Republican, anon.

    It is a green movement, it's about the money, honey.

  30. More AP:

    "ROME (AP) — Protesters in Rome smashed shop windows and torched cars as violence broke out during a demonstration in the Italian capital, part of worldwide protests against corporate greed and austerity measures.

    The "Occupy Wall Street" protests that began in Canada and spread to cities across the U.S. moved Saturday to Asia and Europe, linking up with anti-austerity demonstrations that have raged across the debt-ridden continent for months.

    Black smoke billowed into the air in downtown Rome as a small group of violent protesters broke away from the main demonstration. They smashed car windows, set at least two vehicles on fire and assaulted two news crews of Sky Italia, the TV reported. Others burned Italian and EU flags."

  31. For Rudy, it is about politics, not sleeping accommodations.

    Or there'd have been fewer homeless families in New York.

    33,000 homeless, on a daily basis just in NY City, in 2002.

    The City does a census, it seems.
    Monitoring the challenge.



    That is what it is about.

    It is about no one from Goldman Sucks gong to jail for their malfeasance.

    That they were rewarded for it, instead.

  33. We already know that there is a sizable group of committed anarchists. They would love to blend in with a herd of sheeple.

  34. Lot worse stuff was going on in the Big Apple during Lindsey.

    ...I remember it being chronicled on Letterman.

    Before he became a mind-numbing celebrity Suck Up

  35. Per Suskind, President Obama decided in March, 2009 to create a plan to restructure many of the large, troubled banks, starting with Citigroup - only to learn a month later that Geithner/Treasury had ignored his directive.

    (Perhaps motivated by Geithner loyalty to former boss and Treasury Secretary Rubin (during the Clinton administration),

    then a Citigroup senior adviser and board member?) Insubordination, or protecting the president from himself? In any case, Obama excused it, when asked, as due to 'this is really hard stuff.' Unfortunately, Suskind does not report what Obama told Geithner when he found out.

    Suskind sees Obama as a passive CEO sketching out guiding principles and allowing others to fill in the details. This ended up delegating the creation of ObamaCare to Congress, and fiscal reform to Geithner - losing control and momentum in both instances. Another Obama characteristic was seeking consensus among advisers, instead of considering whether one side or the other was just plain wrong.

  36. Lindsey, doug, a another stalwart of those Northeastern Republicans.

    Like Rockefeller, Romney and Christie.

    They have their place, in the scheme of things.

  37. This Suskind fellow, doug, makes a fair assessment, seems to me.

  38. Author Suskind also wonders why Obama turned away from his campaign advisers (eg. Nobel-winning Joseph Stiglitz, former Labor Secretary Robert Reich) and instead chose men associated with the disastrous prior deregulatory policies (Geithner, Summers). (Stiglitz called the enormously unpopular bank bailouts a win for banks and investors, and a loss for taxpayers. He also asserted that too much of the too-small stimulus went to tax cuts, that GDP is an inadequate measure of an economy.) Geithner is even described by one major bank CEO as 'our man in Washington,' undoubtedly at least partly due to Geithner having been selected by major bank CEOs to lead the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Geithner also had underpaid his taxes by $34,000 in recent years, via erroneous deducations. Reportedly former chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was not Obama's first choice for the position, or even on the initial short list.

  39. YO! John Lewis, sorry dude, you are no longer a part of the solution. No matter what good you done in the past, fact is you are a sitting member of a Congress of Corporate Cronies.

    The people don’t need either the D’s or the R’s. They no longer represent the living breathing people, they represent the un-dead; the citizens known as ‘CORPORATIONS’.

    Sorry again dude , you made your choices to sleep with the Devil when you became a member of the D-status quo. Live with the butt hurt. Ouch!

  40. Back to Lester and the First National Bank of Chi-town, doug.

    Mr Obama was bought and paid for, by a military industrialist and banker.

    As I said, four years ago, if Mr Obama were elected there'd be no change.

    And there has not been.

  41. Geithner, Bernanke the whole lot of those "Large and In Charge" of economic policy are Federal Reservists.

    Extensions of the Banks.

    A very small constituency one that is overly represented in the government.

  42. anon refers to things WE all "know".

    Then commences to project another assumption upon it.

    Without reference beyond what HE "feels".

    The anarchists reached their zenith during the early days of the Republican Progressive Movement, in 1901, with the assassination of William McKinley.

    Ushering Teddy Roosevelt into the White House.

    The anarchnist that shot the President ...
    Czolgosz's actions were politically motivated, although it is unclear what outcome he believed the shooting would yield.

    Sound familiar?

  43. No change here in the USA
    No change in Egypt, either.

    Two members of the military council that took power after the ouster of former President Hosni Mubarak said for the first time in interviews this week that
    they planned to retain full control of the Egyptian government even after the election of a new Parliament begins in November.

    The legislature will remain in a subordinate role similar to Mr. Mubarak’s former Parliament, they said, with the military council appointing the prime minister and cabinet.

    “We will keep the power until we have a president,” Maj. Gen. Mahmoud Hegazy said.

  44. With no date for that Election even scheduled.

  45. Sarah Palin has changed her party affiliation from Republican to Conservative. Very Interesting. Sarah Palin is the one and only person, uniquely, who could, if she were to so elect, destroy the existing Republican Party (at a minimum for this cycle and likely beyond).

    Message to GOP Establishment: Take heed -- you better reconsider and deal with Sarah Palin fairly or you are headed for extinction (the way of the Whigs). Is she toying with a run as a third party?

  46. This is liberalism. "We love, we are peaceful" yet look at their actions. Tea party arrests since inception: 0. Liberal protester arrests since October 1, 2011: Over 1500. Evolve people. There is something very wrong here.

  47. The right wing bloggers still fail to understand the depth of support the occupiers are getting, a support that does not approve of the violent nihilist behavior of some of them. The majority understand that the World as we know has been changed and not for the better. The decisions made by the elite on Wall Street and in Washington has eroded the middle class for at least the next two generations. Mark Steyn has published a very interesting column.

    …:Middle-class America is dying before our eyes: The job market is flat-lined, college fees soar ever upward, the property market is underwater, and Obamacare is already making medical provision both more expensive and more restrictive. That doesn't leave much else – although no doubt, as soon as they find something else, the statists will fix that, too. As more and more middle Americans are beginning to notice, they lead more precarious and vulnerable lives than did their blue-collar parents and grandparents without the benefit of college "education" and health "benefits." For poorer Americans, the prospects are even glummer, augmented by ever-grimmer statistics on obesity, childhood diabetes and much else. Potentially, this is not decline, but a swift devastating downward slide, far beyond what post-war Britain and Europe saw and closer to Peronist Argentina on a Roman scale.
    It would be heartening if more presidential candidates understood the urgency. But there is a strange lack of boldness in most of their proposals. They, too, seem victims of that 1950 moment, and assumptions of its permanence.

  48. more from Steyn:

    As America sinks into a multitrillion-dollar debt pit, it is fascinating to listen to so many of my friends on the right fret about potential cuts to the Pentagon budget. The problem in Iraq and Afghanistan is not that we are spending insufficient money, but that so much of that money has been utterly wasted. Dominant powers often wind up with thankless tasks, but the trick is to keep it within budget: London administered the vast sprawling fractious tribal dump of Sudan with about 200 British civil servants for what, with hindsight, was the least-worst two-thirds of a century in that country's existence. These days I doubt 200 civil servants would be enough for the average branch office of the Federal Department of Community Organizer Grant Applications. Abroad as at home, the United States urgently needs to start learning how to do more with less.
    As I said, these are more or less conventional symptoms of geopolitical decline: Great powers still go through the motions but increasingly ineffectually. But what the Council of Foreign Relations types often miss is that, for the man in the street, decline can be very pleasant.
    In Britain, France, Spain and the Netherlands, the average citizen lives better than he ever did at the height of Empire. Today's Europeans enjoy more comfortable lives, have better health and take more vacations than their grandparents did. The state went into decline, but its subjects enjoyed immense upward mobility. Americans could be forgiven for concluding that, if this is "decline," bring it on.
    But it's not going to be like that for the United States: unlike Europe, geopolitical decline and mass downward mobility will go hand in hand.
    Indeed, they're already under way. Whenever the economy goes south, experts talk of the housing "bubble," the tech "bubble," the credit "bubble." But the real bubble is the 1950 "American moment," and our failure to understand that moments are not permanent. The United States emerged from the Second World War as the only industrial power with its factories intact and its cities not reduced to rubble, and assumed that that unprecedented pre-eminence would last forever: We would always be so far ahead and so flush with cash that we could do anything and spend anything, and we would still be No. 1.

  49. .

    I read Steyn's article too; and while the column is about OWS, I found the following part more interesting.

    When the think-tank chappies ponder "decline," they tend to see it in geopolitical terms. Great powers gradually being shunted off the world stage have increasing difficulties getting their way: Itsy-bitsy colonial policing operations in dusty ramshackle outposts drag on for years and putter out to no obvious conclusion. If that sounds vaguely familiar, well, the State Department reported last month that the last Christian church in Afghanistan was razed to the ground in 2010. This intriguing factoid came deep within their "International Religious Freedom Report."

    It is not, in any meaningful sense of that word, "international": For the past decade, Afghanistan has been a U.S. client state; its repulsive and corrupt leader is kept alive only by NATO arms; according to the World Bank, the Western military/aid presence accounts for 97 percent of the country's economy. American taxpayers have spent the best part of half a trillion dollars and lost many brave warriors in that benighted land, and all we have to show for it is a regime openly contemptuous of the global sugar daddy that created and sustained it. In another American client state, the Iraqi government is publicly supporting the murderous goon in Syria and supplying him with essential aid as he attempts to maintain his dictatorship. Your tax dollars at work...

    The comment on the last Christian church closing in Afghan in 2010 caught my attention because I heard another factoid yesterday (referenced on one of the late night monologues). That being that there is only 'one' Jew left in Afghanistan. Can't remember who put out the statement, NATO, UN or NGO.


  50. Quirk, Deuce, Desert Rat, we can agree on one point: America is at the fork in the road.

    Enough of this mindless militarism that for the last decade has gained us so little for so much. It is time to stop it. We have too many domestic problems that have been neglected.

    We can either pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and take advantage of the incredible opportunity that stares us squarly in the face or, we can continue down our current path of decay, the corrosion of the culture, resulting from the stagnation of social, political and ideological anarchy.

    Everything we need is in place. We have the natural resources (especially domestic energy resources), the infrastructure, the engineering and labor talent to return to the prominence that once was America's entrepreneurial and manufacturing hay days. We don't even need government to get out of the way, just get on board. As for the "Wall Street Occupiers," they will face a decision as well; take off the blinders of political indoctrination an join the prosperous or become just so much rubble along the pathway of our return to the "American Dream."

  51. .

    Obama sends a 100 'advisors' to Uganda.

    How long will it be before we see a news report saying "Drone attack takes out Kony"?


  52. Lester Crown is an agent for those puppet masters above him.

  53. .

    Long-term Dr. David may be right. But by long term I don't mean a year or two. I mean long term.

    The first challenge that will face the OWS is when the weather turns really cold. We will be able to judge the commitment there.

    The established elite are counting on the business cycle turning and things getting better even if only gradually. If that happens, it will be the second test of the movement. It's harder to sleep out in a park when you have a job and a family to feed.

    Other than that, I find the Doc's post to be a bit Pollyannish.

    The government needs to get out of the way?

    Right. Based on history, when can we expect that to happen?

    Everything is in place?

    Our infrastructure is falling apart. Business' latest meme is that there are not enough engineers, or those IT, Science, or Math experts for the available jobs.

    The switch from manufacturing to a primarily service economy took decades. Now even the service jobs that haven't been cut are being outsourced to developing countries.

    Can the trends be reversed? Probably. But it's going to be a long tough slog. With the dicks we have in OZ, it will only take longer.


  54. The militarism, it is not a decade old thing.

    Ike, who everyone liked, warned US of it, in 1960.

    Industrial Militarism dominated US politics throughout the 60's and beyond, despite of the fact that Ike was both prophetic and popular.

  55. If anyone could truly understand the influence wielded by the Military Industrial Complex, a large Standing Military and the threats posed to the Republic and posterity...

    Well ...

    A Five Star General that had led the Allied Armies across Europe to victory, just 15 years prior, he would.

  56. Lester Crown, just a figurehead.

    One required, by the Rules.

    #13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

  57. First rule of recessions: Put the people back to work.

    Second rule of recessions: see first rule.

  58. There are basically three targets of opportunity, in the portfolio.

    Lester Crown, as he personalizes both the MIC and Bankers. Plus, he created Mr Obama, so it's fitting.

    Mr Bernanke, as he is a Librarian that fell off the wagon, and now represents the Federal Reserve.
    Those that created the current morass.

    Mr. Geithner, as he is a tax cheat that became Secretary of the Treasury and a Federal Reservist, to boot.

  59. .

    The militarism, it is not a decade old thing.

    At least prior to the 1990's we had a threat in communism and the Soviet Union. Some would see it as an existenial threat albeit not the threat the CIA would have had us believe, but still, a threat.

    After that there is nothing that could be called an existenial threat but the military/industial complex just keeps on trucking as you pointed out.


  60. I'd submit that the episode in Southeast Asia had more to do with "Guns & Butter" at home than the threat of Communism abroad.

  61. In July, and August, Obama, and the IEA dumped 60,000,000 barrels of oil and products out of the Strategic Reserves, and onto the market. Prices at the pump plunged, and September was a pretty good month (some improvement, anyway in the macro-numbers.)

    Now, those sixty million barrels are, mostly, used up, and prices are rising again; Nationwide unleaded was $3.45 this morning (up from $3.39 a few days ago.)

    Look for those "macro-numbers" to start back down in the next reporting period.

  62. Seeing as how the entire Congressional authorization for use of force in Indochina was based upon fraud and deceit.

    And those "Large and In Charge" knew it.

  63. .

    My previous comment had nothing to do with SE Asia but with the USSR, the Cold War having more validity than the War on Terror or the neocon push for 'democracy'.


  64. Those in the business of "Empire" can be depended upon to make a pretty compelling case for foreign adventures.

  65. My memory, Q, places the Indochina episode squarely sold as part of the anti-Communism/USSR realm.

    A theory that dealt with dominoes, but was fundamentally flawed.

    At least in retrospect.
    Hindsight being 20/20.

  66. "Oil" is always a very good excuse. That's how they snagged my support in '03.

    I was too old to be that stupid.

    Never again.

  67. A few weeks back, I was having dinner with friends and one mentioned that a family relative was working for a small firm of less than twelve that made their living doing flash trading. The firm earned $50 million. I was quite stunned. I consider flash trading no more than gaming the technology of the system. Where does the money come from? Why is that not taxed as ordinary income, every trade? I was trying to think of what kind of factory you would have to have to make that kind of money, the size of a farm, a saw miil, a construction company or any other kind of productive enterprise that actually hires people and builds something. How much capital, real capital, to put together an enterprise to earn $50 million in one year?

  68. No strategic blunder is greater than the trade arrangements we made with China. None comes close.

  69. Well over $500 million, Deuce.

    Light manufacturing, 10% return on capitalization, no?

    Trading income should be taxed as ordinary income.

    Or there should be a tax upon every transaction, like a Federal sales tax.

    Or both.

  70. Those agreements have, for sure, left Bubba high and dry.

    Anybody that tells you they can build a "Great Country" by boning Bubba is either deranged, or flat-out trying to steal money. It cannot be done.

    And, every "great empire" has tried it - right before they fell.

  71. A tax upon every equity trade would be better for the economic well being of the citizens, far better than a 9% tax upon grocery sales.

  72. $500 million sounds about right to me. Then the fun begins. The farming and manufacturing would be the easy part. The shit hits the fan with, local and federal govt, tax people, lawyers, lawyers and more lawyers.

    Everyone realizes that one day we have to break the lawyers. It is them or us.

  73. .

    A theory that dealt with dominoes, but was fundamentally flawed.

    At least in retrospect.
    Hindsight being 20/20.

    At least in hindsight?

    Not to those who understand history. I've made the point before that the Vietnamese have been fighting the Chinese for 1000 years.

    I saw a documentary just this week talking about how the Vietnamese defeated an army sent by Kublai Khan in the 13th century. They defeated a Mongol of army 300,000-500,000 as well as a navy of 500 ships. They defeated the army using scorched earth tactics. They defeated the navy by luring them to a spot where they had placed huge iron stakes under the water. When the tide went out the stakes pierced the Mongol ships and they sank.

    The idea for the stakes came from a battle back in the 10th century when another Vietnamese general defeated another Chinese army.

    The Vietnamese just don't like being conquered.

    Another interesting point was that the Hmong helped the Vietnamese fight the Chinese. The Hmong helped us in Vietnam also before we fucked them over when we left.


  74. We are past the stage of bewiderment and cynicism. Fear is setting in and then will come anger and hate. After that it will be more than Representative Lewis who will be standing quiet in stunned belief.

  75. We can take these protests seriously after a decent alternative idea has been brought forward on what to do instead. Hating the current "system" is not enough, in particular since it is more a product of human nature than a dictator, a banker or some greedy shit on WS./ It is not a system controlled from one place in the Illuminati headquarters - sorry, it is a system millions of us help sustain, and also benefit from in more ways than one.

    Want a cheap iPad? Well that is only possible with near-slave labor in China. You have to know and understand that you are not separate from these things.

    We are not fighting some evil corrupt system where we need to replace the leader - we are fighting a system that we have created by our human nature. This won't be as easy to change, I am afraid.

  76. The Republicans are losing the fight against Wind, and Solar, because, now, local communities like San Antonio are looking at it, and going, "Whoa, this is a good deal; let's do this."

    We'll win the war against imported oil the same way. We'll win when local communities start to realize that they can produce their own fuel, and put their own people to work doing it.

    When we win the war against dependence on Saudi oil we'll be back on the road to "recovery."

  77. That's why I'm not a "total" doomer. We Have an "out."

    We'll take too long in embracing it, but the "out" is there.

  78. Asher, what you wrote is not correct. Only about 6% of the cost of an Ipad is in the labor.

    The main "savings" in producing the ipad in China is probably in the "tax dodge."

  79. Well, Q, there were some who honestly held to the theory of dominoes dropping across the Pacific Rim.

    Their experiences with the Japanese, still reasonably fresh in their memories.

  80. "Asher, what you wrote is not correct. Only about 6% of the cost of an Ipad is in the labor."

    Source, please?

  81. Plus the experiences that were garnered in Korea and Malaysia, with Communist expansionism.

    A basic misunderstandings of culture, geography and history, more than typical in decision makers in the US.

  82. Doug, Mark Perry published the breakdown several months ago on his Carpe Diem Blog. I'm not going to go back over a half a year's blog posts to find it.

    BUT, if you think about it, it just makes sense. The money is in the chips (that were, largely, designed in America, btw.)

  83. What Would a Fair-Labor iPod Cost?

    June 2009

    What's more interesting is the counter-factual: how much would it cost to produce a "Good iPod"? One not produced in a sweatshop, but under decent labour conditions. Like, for example, one produced in the USA — hardly a paragon of labour standards, but a starting point.

    That's what I calculated.
    The Sloan Foundation data estimate just $4 of an iPod's cost is the final assembly in China.

    Using average Chinese hourly compensation costs, that's about 2.7 hours of labour. I then used American hourly compensation costs to adjust for what that final assembly might cost in the States.

    The results are surprising. An American made iPod Classic costs just 23% more than a Chinese made iPod Classic: $58 more, to be precise. The same relationship holds across the iPod family (price differentials in the 20-30% range) The iPod is a durable good, so that's a difference — but smaller than one might expect.

  84. That's from the Harvard Business Review.

  85. Some pretty good comments here

    1. Tina Trent

    Pity poor not very well looking John Lewis, who clearly spent the event asking himself: “could we actually be responsible in any way for the presumptive behavior and damage of these skanky hipsters? The anorectic boyos from Soros-funded “cop-watch” shouted down everyone else and only called on men with beards like theirs’, which is the creepiest thing.

    The “union” child joshing with the political lesbian chatting with Lewis was astroturf of another persuasion.

    I will tell you, in the important-people entourage, there stood the two legislators most responsible for the subprime mortgage crisis in Georgia, thanks to their bills to deregulate lending and create outrageous set-asides in the name of “justice,” around 1998, and look where we are now. The bankers joined hands with the civil rights activists and screwed us all. Thanks, John Lewis; thank you Vincent Fort, you’ve got yours, but why is nobody protesting you? At least I didn’t have to catch a whiff of that dirty-hair/patchouli hackey-sack/sockless-righteous anger stench swirling up around you.

    That is the smell of the near future, I’m afraid.

  86. "The results are surprising. An American made iPod Classic costs just 23% more than a Chinese made iPod Classic: $58 more, to be precise. The same relationship holds across the iPod family (price differentials in the 20-30% range) The iPod is a durable good, so that's a difference — but smaller than one might expect."


    That makes more sense, and is more meaningful than the $4 chinaman's sum.
    Dim sum
    Also, what percent of the chips are made here?
    Plant construction costs alone are a bear here compared to the Gulag.

  87. 2. Morton Doodslag

    That is one creepy video. This is obviously orchestrated from the top, and i surmise that Barack Hussein Obama is very familiar with the tactics being used to control the “community”. He brags a lot that he’s a “community organizer”… Just what do people think that is??? He studied and excelled at this precise kind of creepy robot methodology to gin up fervor and agitate. Just look at the redshirts strategically peppered throughout the crowd. This is what you see at EVERY Left wing rally. Who prints their supposedly grassroots signs? Who printed up the supposedly grassroots tee shirts? Those signs and those commie tee shirts aren’t just accidental. The retail phrases like “99%” and “Occupy” and “Moveon” are not accidents or happenstance – they are all careful, deliberate branding, orchestrated by other “community organizers” exactly like the cancerous tumor metastasizing in the White House.

    Just how radical is Obama? How creepy? Take a look at that video and see with your own eyes what some of us have warned about all along. Obama and his minions in the government, and the public unions and at the universities and in the newsrooms are a cancer on the body politic of America. They don’t just need to be opposed at the ballot box. They are a tumor which requires removing.

  88. The Head Chanter in the red shirt:

    65. Doug

    Fiddler said…

    “There is nothing inherent in this guy’s behavior or “persona” that suggests he has the charisma to have simply charmed the people around him into accepting his leadership as thoroughly as it seems he has.”

    Watching Jim Jones mesmerize is like a return to normalcy.

    It would be worthwhile to stalk the guy with video cameras to reveal that which is impossible to imagine, much less understand, namely who IS this guy, and how could such a creature possibly remain above room temperature for so long?


  89. Cain also said he will attend the dedication of a memorial to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on the National Mall in Washington. Cain said he'll be a guest of Alveda King, the civil rights pioneer's niece and an anti-abortion activist. Cain called King, "one of my personal heroes."

    Democratic President Barack Obama, the man Cain wants to replace in the White House, is set to address Sunday's event.

    Cain has drawn criticism from, some in the black community for his views on race.

    At a campaign stop Saturday Cain accused liberals of playing the race card "until it's the joker in the deck."

    "America isn't worried about color. It's worried about content, character and ideas," he said. "It ain't about race."