Will no one rid me of this turbulent priest?

You go Francis.

I have yet to read anything that you have said that is not truth.

Your writings are clear, lucid, and show the evil standing astride the world today.

But you are coming into the temple of the moneychangers and you are angering them.

Please be careful.  They are evil, and they will not hesitate to stoop.


Graven Images

So:  Charlie Hegbo is putting up another drawing of Muhammad on it's cover this week.

Aniconism is just a word.

I don't think that they get it.


I guess that I am really not Charlie

Been thinking about the whole process leading up to the crime committed in Paris last week.

No one comes out looking good, do they?

A snotty French rag that specializes in smug, self-absorbed printed lynchings of "the other" publishes a series of poorly rendered drawing mocking the founder of a world religion.  Oddly enough, the world religion is one which has an unusually large subset of followers who have no real problem with shooting people in the head who make fun of their religion.

So, after multiple efforts at pissing off this subset, the subset finally went and did the expected thing.

I will put this in terms of the high school experience here in the good old USA.  I think that this is where a lot of folks here in the US draw their societal worldviews.

In every high school, there is a group of preppie kids.  Parents are rich.  The drive the nice cars, wear the hipster clothes, and make a habit of sneering at and mocking those whose parents aren't rich, whose car is unimpressive (or even lower on the food chain, nonexistant), and whose wardrobe leans towards Sears and JC Penneys.  This is Charlie Hegbo.

In that same school, there is an outsider, kinda big, kinda strong, and just a little bit off his rocker.  He has had "issue" with fighting.  He stays off with the parking lot crowd, and everyone (except for his friends) kinda steers clear of him.

Well, one of the preppies decides to impress his friends by walking over to the outsider and going through their little ritual of hazing and humiliation.  The first time this happens, the preppie wins big points among his preppie friends and status is thus raised.  

So, a little time goes by, and the preppie, feeling that his friends aren't paying enough attention tries the process again.  Sometimes the process plays out as before.  Sometimes another result happens: The outsider beats the living shit out of the preppie.

Look, freedom of speech is one thing.  But mocking someone for beliefs different then yours is just never a good idea.  Making fun of other folks beliefs is not the mark of an adult.  Making fun of someone who hold a gun is the mark of an idiot.


Winning, Losing, and Such Ephemera

The hard part for the next decade or so is that the rational folks had better get used to the idea of losing the fight.

Most of the folks out there in Blogo-Doomerland still seem to have the self image of the Prophet.  Out in the wilderness, preaching to the unwashed.

My reading of the history of those folks is that most of them died unfulfilled.

Still, it doesn't mean that they are wrong, or that the problems that they portray don't exist, it just means that the great majority of any population simply doesn't want to hear it.

So, gird your loins my prophetic friends.  Playing the game doesn't mean you get to win, it just means you get to play.


A question for Ilargi

Now, you all know that I am kind of a fanboy of Ilargi and Stoneleigh over at the Automatic Earth.

I do like the Debt Rattle part of the process there.

But sometimes I would love a little more.....so I am going to ask questions here.

Here is the headline in the "Debt Rattle"

• Saudi Arabia Maintains Spending Plans in 2015 Despite Oil Slide (WSJ)

So, since this is a paywall link to a status quo economic cheerleader , I ignore it and go poking over to the "Grey Lady" and find this.....the applicable quote is:

The Finance Ministry said the "budget was adopted under international economic and financial conditions that are challenging." The 2015 budget reflects an expected cut in revenues of around $88 billion from 2014, mostly due to the slump in global oil prices.

So, the Saudi's dip into the big pot-o-dollars and start spending them.....looks as though they have enough to cover bad oil prices for 6-8 years, which I firmly believe will not be the case.

But what will be the effect of spending all these dollars?  What will spending these dollars do to the value of the dollar as they start flooding the market?

BTW:  Here is a $$-SDR conversion

High School Dayze

Sometimes I get tired of trying to figure out just what is happening in the world. But I am beginning to think that my experience in High School may be the best source for models and explanations of the way that the world works.

Can't seem to get past my lack of trust for the mainstream media. The cheerleaders there are so full of shit that it is extraordinarily difficult to get past their sneering, self-satisfied visages to try and parse what they are trying to communicate. When I do make the effort, what I usually hear is an attempt to present the bad data in a light that keeps the charade going. I suppose that I should be offended, but then I take a stroll down memory lane and remember that cheerleaders cheer even when the team is losing. It is just what they do.

The jocks have turned into the corporate types out there. They have engineered the system so that all attention is on them and they have turned the economy and political arena into their playing field. The cheerleaders come to all the games and cheer.

The environmentalist are the stoners.

Parking lot types are still there.

Band types are middle management.

Now, I will grant you that the parallels are not absolute.  But the correlation  is high enough that it is still an effective means of understanding the society around you.


Just a lazy update on an old issue

The boy that cried wolf is the fable that just keeps giving.

SARS, H5N1....the list just keeps going.

I have a nasty feeling, after living in the lab for all those years that there is a trend among the viral cognoscenti to treat any potential "threat" to the currently distended human population as a call to lobby for billions of dollars to be given for salaries, jobs for college friends, and trips to conferences.

A new virus is discovered and it is a race to the feeding trough for the academics and NGO's that, like any flavor of high priesthoods, try to make the general population pay for their beliefs.


Putting the Cart Before the Horse

So head over here

Manipulating the markets, any market, is supposed to be illegal, but don’t count on the bankers going to jail.  Dr. Roberts, who has a PhD in economics, thinks, “The big banks, the big Wall Street money, are essentially agents of the government.  This is why they don’t get prosecuted.  This is why they can break all kinds of laws, commit felonies and settle with a fine.  This is what we’ve been watching in the financial arena.  When these financial gangsters are caught, instead of being indicted and put on trial, they pay money.”

The key phase is:

 “The big banks, the big Wall Street money, are essentially agents of the government." 
More accurate may be the phrase
 the government, is essentially an agent of the big banks, the big Wall Street money."  


Ugo Bardi is great

But sometimes he publishes things that make me giggle.  The extended whining by Professor Malamud is a classic self-pity-party.


I wrote a comment and then came over here to chat a bit more.  If the comment gets posted (and I cannot see why it wouldn't, but one never knows) I will add it here.

But the overall tone is, encompassed in the phrase:
since we're hovering on the verge of extinction, but it will leave an interesting time capsule for whoever might come to recolonize the planet after we're gone.
Man...what a douche.

An Ivy league educated English Professor at a State College might see in the upcoming demographic collapse the end of the world.  All we will be seeing is the end of the unnatural life that he is the poster child for.

Given my druthers, I think that I would have preferred being a nomad of the Pontic-Caspian steppe in the early ninth century CE to being a spreadsheet-brandishing bureaucrat in the early 21st, or for that matter, a privileged child (Ph.D., Columbia) instructing a new batch of not-quite-as privileged children at a second tier university (Georgia State) in a bankrupt education system of a dying empire.

I have a feeling that the future pastoral nomads of the fifth millennium would find the whining equally amusing


You have to be shitting me

This is an actual quote from a blog that holds some respect in Doomerland.

Like the economy, ecosystems are complex systems.  That means that they owe their complexity and order to energy flows and, most importantly, they are inherently unpredictable.  How they will respond to the change by a thousand rapid insults is unknown and literally unknowable. 

OK asshole.  To say that ecosystems are like economies is stupid beyond belief.  Economies are man made constructs.  They do not support life, they are a simple system of generating symbols to be used in the catagorization of social status among a group.

It is dumb-fucks like you that keep the problem going.  To view the economy as a natural thing, subject to immutable natural laws is the mark of an idiot.  The natural environment is many many orders of magnitude more complex than a system for simpletons to dick-match in

Then to sit down and try to tell your fellow profit-by-doom followers how to make money off this is the mark of a true asshole.

Fuck you