Tuesday Night Open Mic for January 12, 2010

Tuesday night open mic comes to us and I have found some interesting articles. I did intentionally avoid the “Sarah Palin coming to Fox” story. I prefer to wait that one out and see what she brings to the table before offering my opinion on the move. She may be great… she may be horrible. Time will tell. However, I do bring some global warming change to mini ice age, some “solutions” to unemployment, and the mortal threat of deer to our existence. Plus a little lapse of individual liberty from, of all places, Texas. I am sure you have all noticed that I have not written as much lately. I am sure you understand the holiday season for me and what made it so. I am also contemplating some changes to my writing schedule that would be more permanent. I will post my thoughts and get everyone’s opinion of them once I flesh them out in my own head. What I would like to do is get to a point where I have the time to be more active in the discussions again. I miss the debates!

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Comments

  1. USWeapon Topic #1

    30 Years of Global Cooling Are Coming, Leading Scientist Says

    From Miami to Maine, Savannah to Seattle, America is caught in an icy grip that one of the U.N.’s top global warming proponents says could mark the beginning of a mini ice age.

    Oranges are freezing and millions of tropical fish are dying in Florida, and it could be just the beginning of a decades-long deep freeze, says Professor Mojib Latif, one of the world’s leading climate modelers.

    Latif thinks the cold snap Americans have been suffering through is only the beginning. He says we’re in for 30 years of cooler temperatures — a mini ice age, he calls it, basing his theory on an analysis of natural cycles in water temperatures in the world’s oceans.

    Latif, a professor at the Leibniz Institute at Germany’s Kiel University and an author of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, believes the lengthy cold weather is merely a pause — a 30-years-long blip — in the larger cycle of global warming, which postulates that temperatures will rise rapidly over the coming years.

    At a U.N. conference in September, Latif said that changes in ocean currents known as the North Atlantic Oscillation could dominate over manmade global warming for the next few decades. Latif said the fluctuations in these currents could also be responsible for much of the rise in global temperatures seen over the past 30 years.

    Read the rest of the article at Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2010/01/11/years-global-cooling-coming-say-leading-scientists/?test=latestnews

    And now it begins. For many of us “older” folks we remember that in the 70’s and early 80’s, the climate experts were telling us that we were heading towards a new ice age. Later, when the trend reversed itself, they changed their tune and told us all how we were heating up the planet and the world would end if they didn’t begin taking more control over our industries and bow to a UN group. Al Gore found himself in a little piece of marketing heaven and watched his stock go from a net worth of a million to 100 million.

    And now, as the trends reverse yet again, they tell us that we may be on the verge of a mini ice age. How is this possible in a world where man has done so much damage that we must spend trillions of taxpayer dollars to combat the warming danger? I guess the next question is how will the UN, Al Gore, and the rest of the AGW folks spin this one in order to maintain the express train of money they were counting on?

    My guess….. The AGW hoax is over. Climategate was a beginning of the end for the AGW fanatics. People are beginning to realize that we were lied to the whole time. The recent cold snap in the US helped push people towards not believing the AGW hype as well (even though it has nothing to do with anything). Despite government’s best attempts to marginalize the damage to their lie, it is over. Sure, there are some folks who will cling to this to the bitter end, refusing to admit to themselves that they bought a lie. But by and large, people will realize they were had, and skepticism of government will continue to grow…. and that is a big bonus.

    • I hope you’re right USW. I’m still disturbed by how many otherwise intelligent people got sucked into the hoax and are still hanging on.

    • I read a report 2-3 years ago by Canadian scientistd taking cores from the ocean floor off of British Columbia. They predicted a coming ice age then. I believe if you wait long enough the weather will change and so will the climate. Change is the rule. We have no control. Any attempt to control it will have many negative unintended consequences. Look at forest fires. We preseved the forest for 100 yrs and now are losing it to devastating totally destructive fires. Oh, I forgot, that too is caused by global warming, not the excessive build up of fuel on the forest floor.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @USW – since when did you fall into the ‘older folks’ bucket and have recollection of climate experts telling us about global cooling in the 70s? I think you’re but a year or two older than I (I am 38) – I sure as heck don’t remember following the news on climate change between the ages 5 and 15, but that’s just me. 🙂

      Anyway

      This notion of ‘experts telling us about global cooling’ is erroneously used to silence the group that stakes claims to AGW – point being that they were somehow wrong in the 1970s/1980s about global cooling, so why believe them now?

      Problem is – this has already been proven to be wrong. Please see my posted reply to a similar claim made on this blog in April of 2009 (The post was “Man Made Bullcrap” originally posted April 7, 2009):

      On debunking premise (well, some of it anyway) and the prevailing (incorrect?) viewpoints.

      Part of the delicious irony and satisfaction from this blog (honestly, thanks USW), is that we can sometimes learn and gain new perspectives. As I furiously tried to track the onslaught of messages today I thought, “surely the ‘children of the corn’-ish mentality here cannot all be on mark can it?” I sometimes try to sit and observe before I speak so I can (hopefully) have a clue what I am talking about. Part of presenting an argument is what I call setting the table for the argument. When the table isn’t set properly, the argument doesn’t taste as good – such is my disdain for the “global warming is farce” that felt and maybe is just a few bricks shy of a load.

      As oft stated as premise today: “We watched as the “experts” told us in the 70’s and 80’s that we were headed for another ice-age” – there were several variations pervasive directly in the posts today ostensibly to set the table that anyone who would suggest global warming today is a crackpot from or akin to the ice age camp from the 70s. I searched and found (w/o great difficulty I may add) where I think this comes from. You see – if we look at nothing but opinion but not the underlying facts we run the risk of just being wrong. I am guilty of that from time to time as well. I don’t know if it were from reading too much George Will or some other op ed, but there has certainly been a drive from the far right to suggest there is wide spread discord from climate scientists which suggests that (if you’re from the far right) that any notion of global warming or climate change is then mere rubbish. There seems to be some great body of evidence supporting this discord (Mooney, 2009). Rather than fall into a ‘opinion is fact trap’ lets dig deeper:

      A 2008 review of peer reviewed literature and papers demonstrated that from the years 1965 through 1979, seven works were classified as related to ‘cooling’ or as stated herein – the 1970s ice age, 20 were classified as neutral and 44 were classified as related to warming (Peterson, Connolley, Fleck, 2008, p. 1332). Indeed the “integrated enterprise of climate science as we know it today was in its infancy, with different groups of scientists feeling blindly around their piece of the lumbering beast. There was no scientific consensus in the 1970s that the Earth was headed into an imminent ice age. Indeed the possibility of anthropogenic warming dominated peer-reviewed literature even then” (p. 1325).

      What to conclude? Well, the notion that there was widespread scientific consensus of cooling in the 1970s is simply, ahem, bullshit. Hell, I’ll even go so far as to suggest that while there may have been 44 papers devoted to global warming, that does not make it so – even the authors of the study agree that the science and data points were too new.

      So now – on to more debunking. I look forward to the responses no less.

      References:

      Mooney, C. (2009, March 31). Opinion: Facts too often distorted on global warming. Retrieved April 7, 2009, from http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_12041499

      Peterson, T.C., Connolley, W.M., and Fleck, J. (2008, September). The myth of the 1970s global cooling scientific consensus. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 89(9), 1325-1337.

      ~ sorry to nit pick – would just like to see this the right way.

      • v. Holland says:

        I wasn’t overly interested in scientific anything back in the 70’s but I do remember the calls of doom-so someone back then was making the idea of global cooling a big deal-but I am more than willing to read the article you posted as a reference but I cannot find it-I’m sure it’s me but I still can’t read it if I can’t find it. 🙂

      • Ray, I think something people don’t clarify enough is if they are debating “global warming” or “man made global warming.” It is difficult enough to relate warming and cooling trends to global warming, let alone equate that to man made global warming.

        When it is obvious that “Climate Change” had to happen for the last ice age to begin and it also had to happen for the ice age to end, how can anyone actually equate any type of man made influence on the climate. I would think environmentalists would be all for climate change because during the history of earth climate has been in a constant cycle of change. Shouldn’t environmentalists be upset if we stop the natural cycle?

      • Ray:

        Now why did you have to go and post that for?

        Your creating a conundrum for the SUFA folks because I must respectfully and completely AGREE with you.

        A few minor caveats however. I am old enough to remember and while the actual science was divided the media coverage and stories spread by teachers was focused primarily on cooling and possible ice age. As I recall the argument was divided by those trying to show man was going to exacerbate the problem and those who were simply using temp data and geologic records to assume the next ice advance was soon to come. The basic ice age every 10,000 year story.

        I would add that while the positions held in the 70’s do not make an argument against todays reported scientfic consensus, it does shed some light into how science can be corrupted, or at least herded into a certain direction, based on more political positions. While it carries little weight today in a solid argument, it should not be ignored either.

        And the same logic must be applied to the concept of “peer review”. Unless we know what that review entailed and how one paper links to another and to another, to simply use “peer reviewed” as a defense of either position is equally fallaceous.

        I was just going to agree outright but figured it would seem to out of character. LOL

        Best to you this morning, sir.
        JAC

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          @ JAC – I knew somehow you’d pick up on the ‘peer reviewed’ (cough, cough) b.s. (yeah, I said that). Nowadays I look at that term with equal suspicion, mostly because in my own field (InfoSec) it is thrown around with such ease – peer reviewed ending meaning ‘a couple of my buddies that walk, talk and act like I do’ reviewed the work and approve it for publication. One must still read and decide if it is worthy or not.

      • Ray,

        I may have been young, but I do distinctly remember the media pushing the idea that an ice age was coming. I was an odd child in that I paid attention to news and politics from the time that I could read and understand.

        That being said, the idea here is not that the previous claims are invalid simply because of this. I feel the previous claims of man made global warming are wrong on their own merits. I am merely pointing out that we are beginning to see the trend reverse yet again.

        Andit should be noted that the claim was that AGW was wrong. AGW being the “man caused” version of the hysteria. I think the climate guys in the 70’s documented what they believed to be true, given the infancy of climate science at the time. I think there were some folks early on in the global warming debates that were correct as well, in that they predicted trends they saw. I then think that Gore and folks like him saw an opportunity and government saw a vehicle for greater control, and the AGW movement was born.

        The point is that now the climate data is shifting again. And I wonder how folks like Gore and the UN will shift their positions in order to take advantage of the shift.

        Go ahead…. fire away.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          @USW – my point more so – which I think you get, is that the “look, ‘they’ were wrong then, so why believe them now” approach is frequently used by opponents of AGW. I am simply offering that the “they” back then were not the so-called experts – that is what the study demonstrates.

          • Ray,

            There are no “experts” today either.

            The amount of climate knowledge is incredibly small while climate is infinitely complex.

            To make any claim of “knowledge” about climate is wholly premature.

    • v. Holland says:

      People are still fighting but the Boxers of the World are not giving up.

      Murkowski Holds Out Option of Vote on Plan to Block EPA

      By SIOBHAN HUGHES

      WASHINGTON — Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday left open the possibility that she would seek a vote next week on stopping the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from going forward with regulations to limit greenhouse-gas emissions.

      “I do not believe and I don’t believe that most of my colleagues in the Senate believe that the EPA is the entity that is the best suited to develop climate-change policy for this country,” Ms. Murkowski (R., Alaska) told reporters. “I’m trying to get a time-out. I’m trying to allow the legislative process to proceed. I’m hopeful that we’ll be able to have a vote that will allow for that discussion.”

      Democrats, businesses and environmentalists are closely watching the vote, which could come in the form of an amendment to a debt-ceiling measure up for a vote in the Senate next week. The failure of the Senate to act on climate legislation has put matters into the hands of the EPA, which last year declared that carbon dioxide — a main greenhouse gas — poses a danger to the public. The agency also announced plans to regulate emissions from cement plants, power plants and other stationary sources, a major new change that could give the federal government a bigger role in determining what types of projects receive operating permits.

      Democrats on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee sought to rally support for the EPA, rushing out a letter opposing Ms. Murkowski.

      “Debating policy choices regarding the appropriate response to unchecked climate change is fair, and the Senate will continue to evaluate the best tools for addressing greenhouse gas emissions,” Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer (D., Calif.) and fellow Democrats wrote in a letter to colleagues. “But repealing an endangerment finding based upon years of work by America’s scientists and public health experts is not appropriate.”

      The battle on Capitol Hill came as outside groups mounted their own attacks. U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue said Tuesday the business group may sue the EPA over its decision to declare that greenhouse gases pose a danger to the public. He has been undeterred by a series of attacks from environmentalists, including an effort last month by Greenpeace, which wrapped the Chamber’s building with oversized crime scene tape that declared the business group was a “global warming crime scene.”

      “It is simple to say we will not stand still and let the endangerment finding, as narrow as it was intended to be, stand,” Mr. Donohue told reporters.

      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB126332127536126375.html?mod=rss_Politics_And_Policy

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Actual global climate facts:

      Q: Has it “warmed” since 1979 (when satellite temperature data became available).

      A: Yes, in 1979, the global temperature anomoly was -0.2 C, currently the global temperature anomoly is +0.28 C. Therefore it has warmed 0.48C since 1979 (a warming rate of 0.16C/Decade)

      Q: Is this warming significant or “unprecidented” on a global scale.

      A: Not only no, but HELL NO!

      Q: Is the vast majority of this warming caused by human activities.

      A: Highly doubtful.

      Q: Is this warming even statistically significant?

      A: Given that the error-bar on these temperature measurements is generally around +/- 0.5 C, I would say a warming of 0.48 C +/- 0.5 C is probably not significant. This means, that within the bounds of error, with 95% confidence we can say that the temperature in the last 3 decades has done the following – the overall temperature change over the past 3 decades is somewhere in the range of -0.02C to +0.98C. This would give a minimum change of essentially nothing, and a maximum change of +0.33 C/Decade.
      Now, of course, if the MAXIMUM assumption (+0.33 C/Decade) was actually the true number, and that trend discernably continued for many more decades, that might eventually be a concern. However, if the minimum number of essentially +/- 0C/Decade is correct and that continued indefinitely, I don’t see how that would be a problem. Both possibilities are within the error bars of the measurements.

      Q: Has the temperature stabilized since 2001 and even began to decline?

      A: Yes, 2001-2006 the temperature was pretty stable. It was stable at about 0.6C ABOVE normal, but it was stable. From 2007-present, the temperature anomoly has declined from +0.6C to +0.28C. Right now, it looks like that deline will continue.

      My assertion is that if we again reach the same temperature we were at in 1979 (anomoly of -0.2C), we will have pretty much shown that climate is basically ever-changing and cyclical, and we really have nothing to do with it and no control over it. I suspect this will be the case within the next few years.

      The AGW proponents will continue to claim, “Well, it would be even COLDER if it were not for global warming!”, at which point we should just say, “prove it” and laugh at them.

    • Ray, JAC

      The outcome of the AGW mythology is the fallacy of ‘peer’ review.

      These AGW guys created a small cartel amongst themselves – called a peer review – and drove this ’cause’ to insanity.

      Peer review is being revised to ‘broad review’ – across many fields and experts. Yes, this scares junk scientists – they can’t fake their work and get paid for it.

      All in all – a good thing.

      Regarding Global Cooling.

      The Earth, with the current organization of land mass, will be dominated by long periods of ice with short periods of less ice.

      Recent studies have claimed that unlike previous thinking where ice ages appear and disappear slowly (geological time scales), the onset of an ice age could happen in under a century.

      Ice kills. Warm lives. Man is smart.

      We’ll do just fine.

    • Several Nittany Lions on this post. Might be time to drop your alma mater a note and encourage them to do the right thing.

      ‘Climategate’ professor Michael Mann protected ‘to maximum extent’ by Penn State policy

      http://dailycaller.com/2010/01/12/climategate-professor-michael-mann-protected-to-maximum-extent-by-penn-state-policy/

      • I have already done so. I was disappointed to see Mann was a professor at PSU. I used to respect his work, but now the evidence points to a deliberate manipulation of information, which I cannot support whether I like the result or not.

        USW

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @ USW – just ran across this also – and not shocking – the Fox news report you cited appears to be have been merely a re-hash of what the Daily Mail has posted earlier – this has since been refuted by the Professor himself (http://mediamatters.org/research/201001120022) – not surprising that the news cycle bites you here – allow Fox to post something sensational, wait 12-24 hours, and then read/watch the watchdog counter-strike.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Ray,

        If I were prone to do like you used to to in the past, I would point out that mediamatters is funded by George Soros and leave it at that. However, you and I have outgrown the habit of merely pointing out the questionable nature of the source as being a positive refutation of what the source reports, so I will go beyond that.

        First of all, the article in the daily mail was not the first example of a scientist predicting that the earth was in for a cooling cycle for the next 20-30 years. This has actually been a pretty popular hypothesis lately:

        First this, from July 2008:

        http://alfin2100.blogspot.com/2008/07/30-years-of-global-cooling-coming-right.html

        Then this, from November of 2009:

        http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=10783

        And this:

        http://icecap.us/images/uploads/WashingtonPolicymakersaddress.pdf

        And this: (This is the same Scientist Mojib Latif making a similar statement back on September 4th, 2009 at a conference in Geneva).

        http://yidwithlid.blogspot.com/2009/09/scientist-predict-10-20-years-of-global.html

        So basically, the same IPCC scientist has said the same thing before now (in September 2009). In his own mind, this does not contradict the theory of man-caused global warming. Since his latest statement he has ATTEMPTED a retraction (probably forced on him by Dr. Pachauri, but you never know :)).

        However, OTHER scientists have also been making the exact same prediction since mid-2008.

        Of course, this doesn’t make the prediction CORRECT, but it certainly seems to have been out there for at least a year and a half now from several different scientists.

        Of course many of the AGW believers are trying to either discredit this theory, or say that there is still underlying global warming being “masked” by natural forces. To the latter argument, I say, “If CO2 is the PRIMARY DRIVER of climate change, then how can it possibly be MASKED by natural changes? The natural changes would have to be the PRIMARY DRIVERS in order to dominate the system, no?

      • Ray,

        I was also aware of this prior to your posting it. I read teh media matters stuff on it as well as some other. I would probably have been more concerned if I was making it the basis for my conclusions. Instead it was a piece for open mic where the idea is discussion.

        And besides, Peter already took care of this comment from you 😉

        USW

      • Ray,
        I would call this Climate Gate II and surmise that it proves that the deniers are making things up and using junk science and that AGW is real.

        Case closed!!! 😉

        • No Todd, I think many of us are simply giddy with the fact that what did not make logical sense to us is finally being both disproven and counter-argued. If you want to believe the unrealistic tenant that man is causing global warming, that is your choice, but it never made sense to me. The climate is too varied and the cycles too common and the science too muddled and the adaptability of the planet to whatever we throw at it too great. AGW simply doesn’t make sense on a logical level.

          USW

          • USWeapon,
            This wasn’t a serious comment, but pointing out how it’s easy to take one bit of misleading information, blow it out of proportion, and then use it to justify an opposing view.

            This is an example of those opposed to AGW taking a weather event and misrepresented research to rationalize an opposing view.

            Isn’t that the kind of thing you accuse the Liberal Elite MSM of doing?

            Do you think it’s a coincidence that this was published right after the big cold snap?

            I’m not sure you can apply “logic” to weather and climate. It’s not a system you can wrap-your-head-around and have it make sense. Much in science that does make sense is evidently proven wrong and much that doesn’t make logical sense at first is proven* over time to be correct.

            History is full of both. Imagine trying to explain to someone that the earth is round. Why don’t we fall off? What do you mean “gravity”? Then why doesn’t my gravity cause that apple that’s sitting on the table to come flying over and stick to me?

            And the earth revolves around the sun? And is held in place by this same “gravity”? That “gravity” is quite the amazing thing you’ve made up. Seems to cover all the parts of your ‘science’ that don’t really make sense… 🙂

            * until it is later proven incorrect by new illogical science…

  2. USWeapon Topic #2

    U.S. Ignored U.N. Aid Agency’s Fraud and Mismanagement

    Between 2004 and 2008, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) showered more than $330 million on an obscure United Nations agency known as UNOPS — United Nations Office for Project Services — to carry out development aid projects in Afghanistan. What happened next wasn’t pretty.

    Among other things, USAID apparently overlooked a growing stack of U.N. audits and investigations that pointed to fraud, mismanagement and lack of internal financial controls by UNOPS in Afghanistan, even as the U.S. agency continued to shovel money in UNOPS’s direction. So did other branches of the U.S. government, to the tune of an additional $100 million.

    In a stunning number of cases, however, USAID also ignored its own oversight procedures and did not even insist that contracts with UNOPS enshrine the agency’s uncontested right to access financial records that would tell how the U.S. government money was spent. Consequently those records were never examined.

    In other cases, it looked like legal loopholes were created to make sure UNOPS got to keep its financial records out of USAID’s reach.

    Worse, the oversight disaster may still not be fixed—even as UNOPS, claiming that it has changed its ways, may get a bigger role in Afghanistan, financed with dollops of U.S. money, in the months and years ahead. .

    Read the Rest of the article from Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,582784,00.html?test=latestnews

    I though this was interesting given the large amounts of foreign aid that we continue to give out. I find it to be a massive fraud in the first place that we provide so much aid. In a country that is struggling to find a way to fund the massive entitlement crap that the progressives are pushing, why is it that we are giving our money away to countries that waste it?

    When the United States is running a giant economic surplus, perhaps we could revisit the idea of helping some of the other countries in the world. But so long as we are running with the largest national debt in history, I don’t see the logic in continuing to send our taxpayers money to ANY other country.

    As a bonus, this article shows exactly how bad our government is when it comes to regulation and oversight. So for all of you that continue to somehow believe that the federal government regulating this or overseeing that is a good or necessary thing, I offer you yet another example of their absolute incompetence in doing so. Our federal government couldn’t run a lemonade stand and keep it in the black. Yet you fools somehow believe that they are the answer to what ails us. I know, I know….. this time they will get it right. ROFLMAO

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Good morning

      I don’t think we should be sending money over to these other countries for the simple reason is, I don’t believe it’s going to those who need it. I believe that the foreign governments are putting it into their pockets with no intentions of using it what it is meant for.

      If they were using it for the purpose of what it’s intended for, then these people in these foreign countries would not still be starving, or living in tents, or mud huts, and the children there could be getting medical checkups and not dying from being hungry, or could be going into educating the children so the can grow up to hopefully lead and live better lives.

      Instead of sending our tax dollars to these other countries, why not leave it here in this country where it is surely needed. Help this country first before we send it over seas where it apparently isn’t appreciated. I’m sure there are people in this country who are just as destitute as those in foreign countries. Like I said last week, charity begins at home and America is my home, and I think we need to help this country before we help others. But, this is just my opinion.

    • From American Thinker,

      January 13, 2010
      UN out of the US! Try Dubai
      Russ Vaughn
      Talk about an idea whose time has come. In an article at Forbes.com, Joel Kotkin and Robert J. Cristiano make an excellent case for getting rid of one of America’s most persistent and irritating headaches, the United Nations.

      In what can only be described as a golden opportunity, the authors point out that the new Worlds Tallest Building in Dubai is in serious need of tenants. With example after example, Kotkin and Cristiano make an excellent case for ridding New York City of its chronic pain in the derrière while simultaneously giving Dubai an opportunity to fill some of the many millions of square feet of state-of-the-art office space now sitting vacant.

      One advantage the authors missed however is this: all those rabidly anti-Semitic U.N. delegates would no longer have to suffer the indignity of living and working in one of the world’s most Jewish cities.

      What a propitious alignment of events this could turn out to be.

    • It is conservative’s most valid argument (the waste and incompetence of gov’t as it is today) but that could change if everybody had a vested interest in seeing it run right.

      Without getting into that (Nirvana, but no more than a totally free society), I’m all for keeping our gelt at home working on OUR problems, but some of those underdeveloped nations we permit big business to exploit might not like it if our government wasn’t subsidizing their problems (so they could look the other way).

      How about cleaning up the mess this government has become by voting both parties into oblivion and starting over? At the risk you crazy right wingers would win that subsequent election, I’m all for anything but the crap this government is serving.

      • On the contrary Charlie, I don’t think the far right in America is all that powerful any longer. The church has lost substantial pull in American politics. I think a re-set right now would end up far different than you think. But that is another topic that I am working on so enough of the free preview!

        Hope all is well with you my friend.

        USW

  3. USWeapon Topic #3

    Scientist: Deer Bigger Threat than Global Warming

    The Chair of the Department of Environmental and Forest Biology at SUNY Syracuse says deer overpopulation is a greater threat to biodiversity in New York state than global warming.

    Speaking to the Ithaca Journal, Donald Leopold explained that “climate change isn’t eliminating species, only moving their ranges.”

    Deer overpopulation, on the other hand, does eliminate other species, he noted.

    “No other real or perceived threat is so pervasive throughout the entire state, nor eliminates the majority, if not all, of the understory of natural communities, greatly reducing the diversity of our natural communities and the function of these communities,” Leopold explained.

    “Ignoring what deer are doing… is worse than throwing litter on the highways, driving gas guzzlers, not recycling, and many other actions.”

    Leopold, who also serves as a Distinguished Teaching Professor in the program, researches “drivers of diversity and causes of varity in terrestrial and wetland ecosystems.” According to his website he has published over fifty-five peer-reviewed papers, six books, six book chapters, six invited book reviews, three proceedings, and many miscellaneous publications, all generally about topics in forest and wetland ecology, and native plants.

    Read the original article at The Federal Review: http://federalreview.com/wp/?p=202

    I don’t have a lot of comments to open with on this one. Someone (I think it was G or LOI) posted this story yesterday and then someone else wanted it brought up for open mic so that they could comment on it. So I have found the article that was being referenced yesterday and linked to it. Now discuss away!

    • Is he jonesing for some grant money? Deer birth control pills or something really useful like that? 😉

      • Hey CP!

        Birth control has been tried and it failed locally. The affluent just to the south were PO’d because deer were eating all their plants and costing them a small fortune in landscaping, so the state tried birth control. The deer population grew as normal and it came down to controlled hunting very near residential areas (bowhunting) despite all the bleeding heart liberals protests. The hunts have continued for years, and they are still eating the plants, funny if you ask me. A good example of how animals adapt.

        G!

        • A Puritan Descendant says:

          I have been constructing 8 foot high wire fences for deer/moose protection around my apple orchards here in northern Maine. I doubt these fences would be allowed in most populated areas because they are so ugly.

          Another solution that works for me is at least one livestock guardian dog. In my case a Great Pyrenees/Maremma cross breed. There again this dog would be outlawed in a hurry as it barks almost constant in the evenings. Very very effective though.

        • I would be happy to contribute by hunting out as many of these critters as they would allow…makes some rather tasty sausage!

    • Followed the link. Some of their comments are hilarious!

    • Animal rights activists argue hunting is not a permanent solution because it’s used year after year. There’s a resistance to trying things like contraceptives, which could provide a permanent solution, said Janine Motta, a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Animal Rights Alliance.

      “If as much energy and resources was put into making birth control work, we would be using that, but that interest isn’t there,” Ms. Motta said.

      http://maplewood.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/02/turning-deer-control-into-a-science/

      Damnitall! I’ve been doing this wrong. When “deer hunting”, I should be coaxing the does to me, so I can “insert a contraceptive” into them? That will be fun to explain to a game warden. “What the “ell are you doing to that deer? Um, I’m inserting a contraceptive into its…Shut the “ell up
      you blankety blank pervert. Tell it to the judge. You know there are laws against that…boy are they gonna love you in prison.”

      Maybe Ms. Motta will make a how to video on getting a buck to wear a condom? The interesting thing is all efforts to use birth control have failed. They cannot control the population in a ten mile area, except by hunting. Tranquilizing the does to apply a contraceptive is also frequently fatal.

      • Buck The Wala says:

        As that is my neck of the woods I feel I should comment. Unfortunately (and quite embarassingly so) I know next to nothing about this. What I do know is that driving around the past few weeks I have seen signs for deer hunting in the South Mountain Reservation and even at Baltusrol Golf Club. I’ve also heard of people driving from the far reaches of the state to participate, as knowing the type of people that live immediately around these areas they would not be so fast to go hunting.

        Actually, the thought of people in this area of NJ shooting a gun on a massive deer hunting campaign scares the shit out of me as I am sure none of them would have much experience (myself included). I am just waiting for the signs for bow and arrow hunting before I join!

        • Buck,

          “the thought of people in this area of NJ shooting a gun on a massive deer hunting campaign scares the shit out of me as I am sure none of them would have much experience”

          A valid point. You don’t just give your kid the car keys, point out the steering wheel, brakes and gas peddle, you teach them to safely operate the vehicle. Same with guns, and it has to include adults, if they have no experience.
          As a 4H instructor, we emphasize MAT, muzzle, action and trigger control. For an accident to occur, you have to fail to control all three at the same time.

          I hope you will seek to educate yourself about firearms.
          you were not born knowing how to safely operate a motor vehicle. It might give you a different perspective as well.

          http://ndwild.psych.und.nodak.edu/ndwild/HTMLPages/accident.html

          JUST THE FACTS
          Accident Timing

          The North Dakota Game and Fish Department has kept records on hunting accidents since 1970. In the past 26 years 343 people were injured by firearms while hunting in North Dakota; 24 of them died.

          Since 1974 the number of reported accidents varies randomly, averaging 13 per year, but ranging from three to 22 victims per year. There appears to be no long term trend (Figure 1) relating to total accidents, but fatalities are decreasing. In the last debate North Dakota has recorded only two fatal hunting accidents, and none in the past four years.

          Most hunting accidents occur in October and November. Light conditions apparently have only a minor influence. Of 157 cases for which the accident time was noted, 77 percent occurred between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. There appears to be a peak in the number of accidents during the late morning (29 percent between 10 and noon).

          Firearm Type

          Shotguns were involved in 48 percent of all hunting accidents,(its Dick Cheney’s fault!!)

          followed by center-fire rifles (26 percent), .22 rimfire rifles (20 percent) and handguns (five percent). However, of 20 fatalities since 1976, centerfire rifles were involved in the most deaths (40 percent), followed by the .22 rimfire (35 percent), and shotgun (25 percent).

          Based on a recent survey of emergency rooms in Montana, however, Dr. Craig Lambrecht, Medcenter One, Bismarck, noted the most frequent type of hunting injury did not involve a firearm. The most frequent type of injury was hunters severely cutting themselves while cleaning game.
          Hunting Type

          Upland game hunting (pheasant, grouse, etc.) accounts for the most accidents in North Dakota – 29 percent. This is followed by big game hunters (23 percent); other small game hunters, e.g., gophers, prairie dogs, (19 percent); waterfowl hunters (16 percent); and furbearers, e.g., fox, coyotes, raccoon, (13 percent). Of 20 fatalities since 1976, eight were big-game hunters, seven were small-game hunters, four her hunting upland birds and waterfowl, and one was coyote hunting.
          Wound Location

          Based on accident reports since 1985, 42 percent of injuries were to feet and legs, 23 percent were to the torso (i.e., chest and abdomen), 18 percent to the head and neck, and 17 percent to the hands and arms. Three of four fatal wounds were to the torso and one was to the head and neck.
          How Accidents Happen

          Since 1970, 40 percent of gunshot wounds have been self-inflicted.

          Fifty percent of all victims were within three feet of the muzzle and 65 percent were within 10 yards of the muzzle. Accident causes often vary, but errors in judgment and violations of safety rules are a common thread in accident reports. In 35 percent of accidents since 1970, the victim either moved into the line of fire, the shooter was swinging his/her gun on game, or the victim was out of sight. In another 19 percent of cases, the shooter was either removing a loaded gun from a vehicle or riding in a vehicle with a loaded gun. Age may also be a factor in accidents. Of 298 shooters for which age is known, 48 percent were between the ages of 11 and 20

          • Buck The Wala says:

            I’ve shot before; I know the importance of education and training. Can’t just go out there with a rifle – too dangerous. I’ve never hunted before though. Something I would definitely want to try at some point.

            • It is not like every tree has someone in it with a gun. Knowing your surroundings and that where you are hunting does not have any fool going out there helps tremendously. Hunting relative to visiting our border with Mexico or walking the steets of many of our larger cities (including our nations capitol) is safe.

              • Buck The Wala says:

                Yes hunting is by and large very safe. But that doesn’t mean someone should go out, buy a rifle, and jump into the woods.

                And one definitely shouldn’t do that at the same time others are doing the exact same thing for the first time.

              • If the rules are the same there as they are here in Louisiana, before you can even purchase a hunting license, you must complete a hunter safety course. Since I am of the age I am, I was exempt from this…but I have been hunting my whole life. NOBODY should ever go hunting for their first time without an experienced hunter accompanying them no matter how many safety courses they attend. It is a wonderful experience whether you harvest an animal or not. I have seen things in the woods that most will never see in person. I saw for my first time a bear this hunting season…in Louisiana that is very rare. It is a wonderful way to relax and see nature as it truly exists. I only wish I was in the woods now!

              • And one definitely shouldn’t do that with Dick Cheney.

      • TO SAVE THE PLANET, WE MUST OUTLAW COWS!!!!!

        Funny, when I went to hear Stossel speak a few months ago, they allowed questions from the audience (6-800 attended), one who was called stated if we would become vegetarians, it would solve most of our AGW problems. A possible solution for the USA, replace cows with deer? Or how about elk, elk is very tasty! Did the stimulus fund any elk fart studies?

        http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2008/08/080822-kangaroo-meat.html

        A recent study suggests phasing out some 7 million cattle and 36 million sheep from Australian rangelands—semiarid land that doesn’t naturally produce the grass livestock requires—and replacing them with kangaroos.

        * California Cows Fail Latest Emissions Test (August 16, 2005)

        Because of their unique gut microbes, kangaroos emit much less methane than sheep and cattle, said lead author George Wilson, of Canberra consultancy Australian Wildlife Services.

        “Methane is a very dangerous greenhouse gas—much more potent than carbon dioxide,” he said.

        Sheep and cattle are responsible for about 11 percent of Australian agricultural emissions, according to a government survey. Each cow produces 1.84 metric tons of greenhouse gas equivalents a year, and each sheep gives off more than 300 pounds (140 kilograms).

        Kangaroos, meanwhile, emit less than seven pounds (three kilograms) of greenhouse gases. Under the study’s proposal, that could translate into savings of 16 million tons of greenhouse gases annually—or 3 percent of Australia’s total emissions.

      • LMAO at you LOI. Can I watch?

        • I will have to work on the catching the doe first. Since we don’t want to kill them, no tranquilizing, which has about a 50% survival rate. So how to attract a doe? Food, the right bait will bring them to feed every day. How to get close? Over time, you can tame them to some extent. But getting their confidence to where they will allow you to insert anything, anywhere is pretty unlikely.

          Bucks are not that hard to attract, during rut, a friend had one walk up behind him and lick the attractant off his boot. He looked down to see some suddenly SHARP pointy things very close to a sensitive area. Bucks are also known to “mount” decoys that have the proper attractant.

          So, I think I will stick with just shooting them.

      • I think I saw some of that ‘video’, ahem, on the internet once. Or maybe it was a pony…. LOL!!!

        😉

        Good Morning G-Man and everyone. I think its morning….I had to come in to work at an anti-social hour today……waiting for the other sleepy heads to show up…..

    • They should just reintroduce mountain lions to the northeast, like they did with wolves in yellowstone. I looked up the Pennsylvania Game Commission to see what they had to say about animals in the state and they say the only wild cat right now is the bobcat but I know many people that have had first hand sightings of mountain lions. There are a few, but otherwise there was no other natural predator to the dear other then American Indians.

      • Naten,

        I think that is a bad ideal. Predator attacks are increasing, coyote, bear, wolf will attack humans, especially small children. Combine that with gun control and frequent animal protection laws and its not a good thing.

        http://www.igorilla.com/gorilla/animal/cougar_attacks_increasing.html

        Of the 10 fatal cougar attacks on people recorded since 1890 in the United States, half were in the past 10 years. Nonfatal attacks also are on the rise, as are reports of cougars preying on pets and livestock.

        Being chewed by a cougar, or even seeing one in the wild, is still rare. But a recent string of attacks and close calls has forced Westerners to reconsider what is “typical” cougar behavior:

        –A 6-year-old boy was jumped by a cougar on July 31 while hiking with about three dozen other campers on Marshall Mountain near Missoula, Mont. The cat pinned Dante Swallow with its paws and bit into his neck, but was pulled away by a camp counselor. The boy survived with scratches and puncture wounds. The cat slunk away and was later tracked down and killed.

        –In Colorado, cougars have attacked three hikers in the past year, including 10-year-old Mark Miedema, killed last July in Rocky Mountain National Park. He had hiked a few minutes ahead of his family on a well-traveled trail; they arrived to see the cougar dragging him away.

        –In Olympia, Wash., a cougar prowled a residential neighborhood for a week in April, hiding under blackberry bushes and preying on pets until wildlife agents tracked it down and shot it a few blocks from City Hall.

        The list goes on: Since February, cougars have been spotted lounging on a porch in Villa Park, Calif., munching house cats near Kalispell, Mont., and wandering near an elementary school near Reno, Nev. In each case, the cougar was shot by officials fearing further problems.

        • I reread what I wrote and see that I didn’t include as much sarcasm as I wanted to. I was trying to make a reference to the fact that if environmentalists are against hunting they should be in favor of natural predators, hence introducing the mountain lion, and since there are deer problems in urban areas, they should introduce the mountain lions in urban areas.

        • LOI

          I don’t think you will find any confirmed attacks of wolves on humans, except in case of rabbies.

          But then wolves wouldn’t hang around the urban interface anyway. They would just move into the woods and destroy the deer populations there.

          Pretty soon ALL the surviving deer will be living in town.

          Cougars and bob cats are not as reluctant to follow prey into the urban interface, or urban areas themselves.

          But this is a classic study of the reality that every action in nature creates a reaction, and quite often we don’t know for sure what that will be.

          Happy hunting.
          JAC

          • JAC,

            ALL predators will attack humans. Such attacks are rare, but do occur. I think our size makes a difference, even a 150 lb. mountain lion may not want to face an adult human.

            http://www.aws.vcn.com/wolf_attacks_on_humans.html

            Two wolf attacks on humans occurred in 2000.

            Icy Bay, Alaska – Six-year-old John Stenglein and a nine-year-old friend were playing outside his family’s trailer at a logging camp when a wild wolf came out of the woods towards the boys. The boys ran and the wolf attacked young Stenglein from the back, biting him on the back and buttocks. Adults, hearing the boy’s screams, came and chased the wolf away. The wolf returned a few moments later and was shot. According to Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) officials, the wolf was a healthy wild wolf that apparently attacked without provocation. The boy was flown to Yakutat and recieved stitches there for his wounds. Later, however, the bites became infected and the boy had to be hospitalized. (Reports and Interviews on file and available upon request.)

            Vargas Island, British Colombia – University student, Scott Langevin, 23, was on a kayak trip with friends. They camped out on a beach and, about 1 AM, Langevin awoke with something pulling on his sleeping bag. He looked out and came face to face with a wild wolf. Langevin yelled at the wolf and it attacked, biting him on the hand. Langevin attempted to force the wolf toward a nearby campfire, but as he turned, the wolf jumped on his back and started biting him on the back of his head. Friends, hearing his yells, came to his aid and scared the wolf away. Fifty (50) stitches were required to close the wound on Langevin’s head. British Colombia Ministry of Enviroment officials speculate the reason for the attack was due to the wolves occasionally being fed by humans although there was no evidence that Langevin or any of his party fed these animals. (Reports and Interviews on file and available upon request.)

            This is but a brief summary of a few verifiable accounts of attacks on humans by healthy wild wolves in North American History.

            • LOI

              I had forgotten about the attack in Alaska, although I think they figured out those wolves were starving. Doesn’t matter.

              The Canadian report I never heard but would not consider that an attack outright.

              In 1972 I was involved in two research studies of coyotes and wolves. The wolf study shocked me and the other researcher because we could find not a single “confirmed” wolf attack on a human. In recorded history, in the world. Even in Russia where the fairy tales were rampant about wolf attacks, there was no actualy documented and confirmed attacks found by researchers.

              Cougars and all variety of cats is another matter, however. Cats attack sheep and other small animals for fun. They go way beyond what is needed for the immediate meal. Children, in size and sound are very close to other small animals. Cougars will also chase and attack adults and this has been confirmed through history and by my brother in law.

              My point is that a few wolves back east wouldn’t really help anyway. They would just cause the deer not living in town to move to town for safety. Its happening all over the west where the new wolf populations are getting to big. Even during deer season. They have figured out they would rather deal with humans and their dogs than chance returning to the woods.

              JAC

              • Good Day JAC!

                This past deer season in Pa., there was a confirmed road kill of a wild wolf about 10 miles from our location. The confirmation process was simple, it had a Pa. Game Commission tag on it’s ear. This is the first year that I have seen coyote while hunting, and they are quite large. The last one I seen kinda shocked me, it was the same color as a Golden Retriever from head to toe. I would have shot it (only 40 yards away) but thought it was a dog. Won’t make that mistake again.

                Hope your day is a good’un

                Peace and Live Free!

                G!

              • GMan

                The paper I did in 72 included discussion of how coyotes had moved into the eastern USA, long after Lewis and Clark came west.

                Of special note was that coyotes in the east had bred with ferral dogs to create a larger and must more aggresive, nastier breed.

                No such interbreeding had occured in the west. But then we usually killed off wild dogs pretty damn quick. They like to kill livestock.

                Bottom line. If you see one of these hybrids shoot first and ask Coot and Carp for forgiveness later.

                Peace and Freedom
                JAC

              • G-Man:

                I watched a show on the Hunting channel about varmit hunting. The guy had a rifle and shotgun and used a predator call that he sells. He called for 20 to 30 seconds and then waited. The coyotes came running toward him. He shot one with a rifle. Moved to another spot, repeated the calls, and killed two more with a shotgun with buckshot. He made it look easy.

                We have coyotes around me. I’m thinking about trying to hunt them.

              • I have a good recipe for coyote, as a last resort, Been thinkin about doing the same this spring

              • Birdman:

                If you do, kill this time of year.

                The hides with fur on make good coat or parka liners or great hats/collars.

                You can sew up holes with fine nylon thread before tanning. Hold better after the process.

                Calls work great on coyotes that haven’t been called much. Other wise it may take much longer than that video you watched.

        • Lions are common here in the Sierra foothills. I have been face to face with one as have my boys. I have also found tracks in my garden. The local paper runs at least one or two stories a year of close calls usually a dog protecting a child. In one case a young musician had the brains to blow his horn. About 15 years ago, a young mother was jogging in Cool, CA and became lion food. The kits ended up in the Folsom Zoo. I know of locals who have shot them as they were attacking live stock. Lions in CA are Constitutionally protected, one of our great referendums passed by the city folk to save the cute lions. Their population is steadily growing and sightings are becoming more common. The local school has been locked down on several occassions from sightings.

          Coyote are also common. I frequently hear them at night and scared off one that was stalking my ducks when we had ducks. Unfortunately, the neighbors shepard finished off the ducks.

          Years ago in PA, I had a friend that swore he spotted a lion crossing the road at night. I was growled at my something bigger than a house cat in the PA mountains around State College. Was it the elusive Nittany Lion?

          • As I am sure you are aware, the Nittany is nothing more than a mountain lion, lol, but it is damn illusive. The environmental folks tell us that there are no more mountain lions in PA. But I tell you they are dead wrong. Odds are, you were in fact growled at by a nittany lion (a mountain lion that lives on Mount Nittany). PA doesn’t have the mountain lion population that they used to have, but they still have them. I have seen them around State College and in the mountains around my hometown in PA.

            USW

            • This was on Tussey Mt. above Pine Grove Mills on the opposite side of State College form Mt. Nittany. I was bow hunting with a friend. He thought as I did. It was a distinctive growl from a critter of significant size. We also saw paw prints. They are there but well out of sight. Maybe Dr. Mann will go hiking.

              We hiked Mt. Nittany several times a well. Picked a peck of wild grapes there and made some good Nittany joy juice. We used to take off before dawn and go trout fishing and be back for 10 o’clock classes. Great place to go to school.

    • USW…..we have some input to this. The deer, especially doe, are running rampant. There are about 60 doe to every buck in Texas and about 15 to one in Oklahoma. ( We have land in both places ). Also, with the encroachment in the Austin and San Antonio areas into the hill country and the ranchers selling their land to developers, the deer have no where to go and once game managed properties are now no hunting areas and the deer are breeding faster than rabbits. They are becoming quite destructive and now wander into residential areas that were once their feeding areas and eating the flowers and grass….not to mention people feeding them.

      On our ranch, we have from the State 300 doe permits to just eradicate the doe. We do not lease to outsiders as they shoot everything from horses to cattle. Most deer hunters are wannabees….they get out once a year and see horns on everything including people. We choose not to run the liability. However, the deer are becoming so plentiful that our crops of alfalfa and winter hay are being destroyed. Combine that with the fact that for some unknown biological reason, the fawns are 4 to 1 does. The women are taking over.

      What we do is sponsor a game hunt for doe only and the meat is donated to food banks and charity groups. Each group is escorted so no one gets “buck fever” and shoots Bambi, or the cattle, or the horses…..much less the ranch hands. But it is becoming a major problem in Texas and Oklahoma.

      Anyway, this is our donation to the GLOBAL WARMING fiasco.

      • D13, I would be happy to assist you in your doe control…I have been hunting for most of my life and definitely know the difference between deer and cows! Was able to harvest one doe and one buck this year…the sausage and backstraps are delicious. Just let me know!

      • I will help, only got one this year.

    • 7

      Comments
      The Bear Necessities
      by Max Prasac
      01/12/2010

      By the top of my first trip up the rock pile that Pennsylvanians call a mountain, I remember thinking what it would be like dragging a bear back down. My clothes were soaked through with my sweat, my calves were burning like a three-alarm fire, and I felt like I was sucking wind through a straw. I was carrying a tree stand, and my hunting partner’s pack (who will be referred to as “Mr. Gadget” from this point forward), with the center of gravity of a London double-decker bus. I actually had one of those bad Marine Corps flashbacks that have become fewer and farther between the longer I have been out of uniform (nearly 25 years). You know the one – where the 18 year old body fights the urge to quit under the weight of an 80-lb pack (with a PRC 77 radio to give it more ballast) towards the end of a 20 miler. That 18 year old body handled it a bit better. But I’m not about to quit. That would be akin to not loving mom….

      We reached the summit and looked for obvious bear sign and game trails in order to pick our vantage points. There was lots of scat, which seemed rather promising. I picked a tree, set up my stand, cleared my shooting lanes, and went over to lend Mr. Gadget a hand with his stand. I carried my hunting partner’s pack up the mountain as his rather large and intricate stand didn’t really allow for carrying a pack, additionally (loaded to the top with MacGyver-like gadgetry I might add). Hey, the human body can only take so much. His stand, a climber, featured everything my stand did not, including arm rests, a back rest, an amply padded seat, seat belts, air bags, a roof, a flat-screen TV, climate control, and a portable microwave. Mr. G. even brought an intricate pulley system for each piece of gear that needed to be hoisted up to his Swiss Family Robinsonesque, tree-house like perch that he calls a tree stand. After the stands were deemed ready for hunting, we made the trek back down the mountain. The next morning was opening day.

      Opening day was cold. Okay, that was to be expected this time of year, but at least the rain gods weren’t feeling vengeful and it was mostly dry. Cold weather means lots of layers of clothing. Lots of clothing layers coupled with a near vertical hour-long climb means perspiration. Perspiration leads to discomfort, but I’ll get back to that in a minute.

      I got into my stand in the early morning darkness, excited by the prospect of bagging a large Pennsylvania black bear, and settled in for the wait. An hour went by and I didn’t even hear a bird chirp, but I think I heard one yawn. Nothing. Patience is definitely a virtue when stand hunting, especially on public land. Another hour went by, and even the insects hadn’t bothered getting out of bed. By then, I had developed a slight and uncontrollable tremor as the chill started to set in. But that’s okay, that’s par for the course. Another hour or two later and my tremor had developed into a tectonic plate shifting earthquake. It was cold – really cold. My toes started to numb at that point indicating that my boot warmers had abandoned me in my time of need as well.

      Noon rolled around and I decided that I needed to eat something in order to fool my body into generating some heat by feeding it a soggy peanut butter and jelly sandwich. My limited space on the stand meant that my pack was tucked under my seat and a bit difficult to access. So, by brail I felt around and located the Ziploc housing my lunch. Unceremoniously, I lost my grip (numb fingers and the aforementioned tremor) and my sandwich tumbled to mother earth. So much for lunch. Would a bear eat my lunch, and could that be construed as baiting? I contemplated the legal ramifications of my clumsiness, as baiting bear in PA is verbotten.

      More hours, more waiting, and not an animal stirred – save for one lone chipmunk. Its very presence annoyed me as it seemingly taunted me – probably attributable to the cold-induced delirium. I don’t think the chipmunk realized just how close it came to meeting its demise. Still no bears. Nothing. By mid-afternoon, still shaking, vision blurred, and fantasizing about fireplaces, down comforters, hot cocoa, and sunshine, it was obvious that the day’s hunt was finally and mercifully over. I stopped shaking long enough to safely make my way down the stand to terra firma and headed over to Mr. Gadget’s stand. I made lots of noise on my approach as getting shot by my hunting partner would not have improved my mood any.

      Well, there he was, sitting contentedly with a sleepy smile, a camouflage blanket wrapped around the entire stand, creating a cozy cocoon. Mr. Gadget never felt an ounce of discomfort, which raised my blood pressure a bit. I swear I smelled coffee brewing right before he decided to climb down. I have got to get one of those stands — oh, and someone to carry it.

      We were scheduled to head back down to Virginia the following afternoon, so we proceeded to break our stands down for the long trek back down the mountain. You know, something about having to work or some such inconvenience. Of course we were carrying too much gear for one trip down the mountain. Multiple trips were in order. Great.

      On the way back up (after taking our packs down) to retrieve the stands, at the half-way point, the sky opened up. Just what we needed, wet, dead leaves covering sharp rocks. Needless to say, the climb back up wasn’t without pain and suffering, but we were determined to beat nightfall. Once we located our staged stands – we put them in a safe place that even we had difficulty finding, we again made the trip down the mountain. With legs in an even weaker state than the first trip down, we headed into dusk. Of course I twisted this and banged up that, but made it back to the vehicle with minimal damage – actually the damage was mostly psychological at that point……

      The last painful steps down the mountain and I again questioned the sanity of subjecting my body to further abuse…….

      You see, I have grunt’s (that’s infantryman in layman’s terms) knees that have the additional benefit of years of professional athleticism, mixed in with some surgery. Which is a fancy way of saying that I’m a mess and a poster child for glucosamine and anti-inflammatories like ibuprophen.

      Back in the cabin, when the boots and wet gear were finally off, the fire was alas burning brightly on its own, the pain was subsiding to a dull throb, and that hot cup of coffee feeling great in my stomach and even better between my frozen fingers, an uncontrollable smile formed on my chapped lips. I have really never felt better. No bear, no trophy, no hunting-camp tall tale of heroism and precision marksmanship, nothing to show for – save for frostbite and a case of hypothermia, but no better time. Suffering on a hunt is somewhat poetic (if not karmic). This is why it’s called hunting and not shooting. Who appreciates it if it is too easy? Not me (well, not me all of the time). Will I do it again? Absolutely. Will I suffer again? Most definitely. Will I enjoy it again? You bet! I have this conversation with myself every year or so. But next year, we’re hunting over bait…….or with an outfitter…….or we’re getting someone else to carry the gear……or…….

      Disclaimer: Since this is a hunting story, it falls under the category of “tall tale,” and I reserve the right to stretch the truth, exaggerate, perjure, fib, fabricate, misrepresent, omit, and lie to increase the entertainment value of the story.

      Mr. Prasac is a friend of the Guns & Patriots staff. He is a former Marine that generally looks for any reason to get out of work and hunt. As you read this he is in a tree stand.

    • Astonishing.

      Some people, while trying believing they can understand infinitely complex systems, continually run into “cause/effect/negative feedback loops” all over the place.

      The astonishing thing about this is that these people are astonished by it!

      An example of small minds in a big universe.

  4. USWeapon Topic #4

    Texas School Board Keeps Ban on Boy’s Long Hair

    The parents of a 4-year-old boy disciplined for having long hair have rejected a compromise from a Texas school board that agreed to adjust its grooming policy.

    The impasse means pre-kindergartner Taylor Pugh will remain in in-school suspension, sitting alone with a teacher’s aide in a library. He has been sequestered from classmates at Floyd Elementary School in Mesquite, a Dallas suburb, since late November.

    After a closed-door meeting Monday, the Mesquite school board decided the boy could wear his hair in tight braids but keep it no longer than his ears. But his parents say the adjustment isn’t enough for Taylor, who wears his hair long, covering his earlobes and shirt collar.

    His mother, Elizabeth Taylor, said she’ll pull back Taylor’s hair in a ponytail, acknowledging the style will keep him suspended.

    According to the district dress code, boys’ hair must be kept out of the eyes and cannot extend below the bottom of earlobes or over the collar of a dress shirt. Fads in hairstyles “designed to attract attention to the individual or to disrupt the orderly conduct of the classroom or campus is not permitted,” the policy states.

    The district is known for standing tough on its dress code. Last year, a seventh-grader was sent home for wearing black skinny pants. His parents chose to home-school him.

    On its Web site, the district says its code is in place because “students who dress and groom themselves neatly, and in an acceptable and appropriate manner, are more likely to become constructive members of the society in which we live.”

    Read the rest of the article: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,582833,00.html?test=latestnews

    D13, what the hell is going on in Texas? Just when I think that Texas is the state that most has its crap together in terms of individual liberty, I stumble across something like this!

    Let’s be clear, I am not a fan of long hair on boys. My nephew has it and, while he is a cutie, I still give his mom a hard time every now and then. My son has long hair. His choice. But the bottom line is that this is a prime example of a case where folks feel they have the right to dictate to others on something that has absolutely zero impact on them. As a result we have a PRE-KINDERGARTNER sitting in IN SCHOOL SUSPENSION! How insane is the world when we have 4 year olds in suspension, because their hair is too long.

    I see absolutely no way to justify this. It first goes against the very core belief that if it doesn’t infringe on you in some way, you should have zero say about it. I applaud the parents for refusing to accept the ruling. The school district is wrong, and should be set right by parents standing up for themselves and their children. What exactly does the student’s long hair have to do with anything related to education?

    And you have to love a school board that is arrogant enough to actually post a statement such as “students who dress and groom themselves neatly, and in an acceptable and appropriate manner, are more likely to become constructive members of the society in which we live.” Because I would submit this: Students who are taught to think critically, who are given a proper education, and who are encouraged to work for success are more likely to become constructive members of society.

    This entire issue simply pisses me off. I have had it up to my hairline with all of the folks out there who think that the public school systems have a right to do things like this. I have even further had it up to here with the idea that the public education system should regulate hair length while turning out statist robots who rely on government to solve problems.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      LOL, sounds like some of my ancestors are in charge down there, Heh.

    • I was in a waiting line last weekend and this kid with long hair started talking and I said to my wife “holy crap that’s a boy?” The same thing happened when I saw a picture of the kid in this news article. Personally I would have to draw the line when you can’t tell if it is a boy or a girl.

    • USW says: D13, what the hell is going on in Texas? Just when I think that Texas is the state that most has its crap together in terms of individual liberty, I stumble across something like this!

      D13 laughingly responds: Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water ( Jaws theme inserted here..dum-dum-dum-dum ) Not to worry, my friend..the lad keeps his long hair. As you know, not every tracer hits the target. Every now and then one nose dives into the ground or flies off to parts unknown. There was enough outrage here from parents and even those that are not parents to make the school board redefine its standards. However, keep reading as to why some of those standards are in the schools here.

      D13 continues: We used to have a tremendous gang problem in our public school system. Hats signifying gangs, shirts, tatoos, jackets, hair styles, mannerisms, etc. that all identified gang related issues. We had NUMEROUS guns and knives being brought to school and the children more worried about staying alive than studying. (This was years ago) The Texas education agency and the teachers associations along with parents groups and some of our legislators all held PTA meetings and town hall type meetings to discuss these issues. While no one wanted to regulate dress and appearance, it was thought necessary to eliminate the “individualism” of gang related apparel and identifiers that set them apart. As usual, they threw the baby out with the bathwater and went too far in their restrictions. We further decided that this was to be a school district policy issue with the independent school districts and not a city or state enforced law. In other words, it was left to districts and PTA groups manned by parents and teachers. Some districts have stricter rules and some districts have more lenient rules. The end result has been that since 1988, school violence (knifings, shootings, robbery, rapes) have dropped 87.4% and the TASS scores have improved by an average of 32 points solely on the changing of the dress and appearance rules instigated by the individual school districts. Now, you have hats worn properly, no butt cracks or underwear showing, no insignia or uniformity identifying any gang groups, etc.

      D13 Continues: No one wants to limit individual rights and Texas went as far as to leave the administration of rules in the hands of the ones affected. No state or local laws. In this particular case, the interpretation of the rules was too extreme. This lad had long hair and that is all. It was clean and all the school wanted was to tie it back in a pony tail and make it neat and that is the compromise. The schools are keeping grooming standards as far as neat and clean and reasonable. No one is advocating short hair. However, the results have been extraordinary in the levels of violence and grades. But, just so you know, there were a lot of military veterans that called the school board on his behalf and it worked.

      D13 finishes: There are some school districts in the Houston area that did not change anything and the results are rapes, drugs, knives, gangs, and guns. High drop out rates and no test scores. I think that the freedoms were not eroded and our process worked. The State and City stayed out of it. The local district handled it and listened to the parents and others and changed their mind and the parents of the child also agreed and everybody is now happy.

      One last thing….it is interesting to note that two of the board members of that district that voted against the lad to start with were democrats and transplanted here from New York and Oregon.

      Anyway, we are in control my friend….and the freedoms of the child, the parents, and the school district were all upheld.

      • Control to mean that we kept the State and City out of a local situation. No nuclear strike where a simple scalpel works.

  5. USWeapon Topic #5

    The ‘Real Unemployment’ Needs Real Solutions

    “Everyone agrees that the recession is over,” said Larry Summers, President Obama’s top economic advisor, on December 13.

    Yet December’s unemployment numbers announced last Friday suggest otherwise — especially the ‘real unemployment’ figure.

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the official unemployment rate is 10%, a figure which itself caused a major headline to blare, “U.S. Job Losses Dim Hopes for Quick Upswing.”

    But in fact real unemployment in the United States is stuck at a dismal 19%, a figure nearly twice the so-called official number. And the economy is short a staggering 22.4 million jobs in order to have an overall full unemployment rate of 5%, which is more than twice the 9 million figure the administration is using.

    These sharp contrasts arise because the BLS uses only survey data rather than much more accurate payroll data. It also excludes changes in employment among the nation’s 11.2 million farm and self-employed workers, even though together they represent more than 7% of the civilian labor force. Most important, however, it does not take into account the 15.1 million workers who are either part-time-of-necessity because they can’t find full-time work, marginally attached because they live on the very fringes of employment, or out of the labor force because they are discouraged and have given up looking.

    With these three adjustments made, the number of real workers in all four categories of unemployment — BLS, part-time-of-necessity, marginally attached, and discouraged — totals 30.4 million instead of BLS’s single category figure of 15.3 million. And the number of real unemployed workers has increased by 13.6 million since the start of the recession instead of by BLS’s figure of 8.4 million — in contrast, we should have been creating a net 2.6 million new jobs just to keep up with the natural growth in the labor force of around 108,000 workers per month.

    Read the rest of the article at the Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leo-hindery-jr/the-real-unemployment-nee_b_420108.html

    I am interested in getting the take on this from some of the economic folks that frequent SUFA. When you click on the link and read the full article, the author, Leo Hindery, Jr., makes his recommendations for what the real solutions to our economic problems are. These include such measures as filing a “Section 301” case against China, adopting a buy American regulation, and creating wind and solar jobs.

    I read the article and my take was that this guy is as clueless as any. And the main reason that I say so up front is because he first and foremost believes that regulation and new laws and government intervention is the solution. When the reality is that the solution to the American economic problems is a return to a market that is at least far more free than it has been in quite some time. I understand a completely free market is a myth for us now, but it can have less sewage in the glass than water.

    I look forward to everyone’s take on this subject.

    • “Everyone agrees that the recession is over,” said Larry Summers, President Obama’s top economic advisor, on December 13.

      These are the very same people that agree that AGW is real. They need to be unemployed!

      G!

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      USW says >
      “When the reality is that the solution to the American economic problems is a return to a market that is at least far more free than it has been in quite some time.”

      I agree. I just don’t understand why our politicians never make that argument.

      • How about the term “bribery”?

      • Puritan,

        Why are you surprised politicians do not understand this?

        It is not a matter of corruption (though it breeds it).

        It is a matter of philosophy and core belief.

        A politician and all Statists cannot believe free men make better decisions for themselves then Statists make on their behalf.

        The centralist theory:
        A small group of very smart men know more than a very large group of smart men regarding the desires and wants of all men.

        Their theory is disastrously wrong. But they try anyway, regardless.

        • A Puritan Descendant says:

          I am beginning to think that freedom lovers don’t run for office. Leaving only control freaks.

          • Puritan,

            This is true.

            A politician is a man who believes he is better at running another man’s life than that man.

            A freedom lover understands that if he demands the right to run another man’s life, his own life will be run by other men. Therefore, he does not work himself to a position to run another’s life.

            Therefore, a free man avoids politics.

            That leaves the pool dominated by those that wish to enslave others.

    • Our politicians are not worried…they still have their jobs making way more than the average American. The government needs to get out of the way and let what little bit of capitolism is left take over and do what it does best…cut taxes to small businesses and reduce the regulation crap…IMHO.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Regulation, new laws, and government intervention will ALWAYS lead to MORE unemployment. There is absolutely no way such things could lead to less unemployment. This has been demonstrated time and time again.

      Some people keep re-writing the history books before they learn any history.

    • Any bets on unemployment benefits being extended at least until November?

      December 19 Update: The Senate has passed a two-month extension of unemployment benefits through February 28, 2010. The legislation, already approved by the House. continues the Extended Benefits Program, the Federal Additional Compensation (extra $25 per week) and the COBRA subsidy. President Obama is expected to sign the legislation.

      December 18 Update: The House has passed a two-month extension of unemployment benefits through the end of February. The new legislation continues the Extended Benefits Program, the Federal Additional Compensation.

      December 3 Update: A bill extending unemployment benefits has been introduced in the House by James McDermott (D-WA). If approved, H.R. 4183, the Helping Unemployed Workers Act, would extend the eligibility deadline for those who have exhausted benefits from December 31, 2009 until March 31, 2011.

      In addition, the legislation would fix the deadline glitch that prevents unemployed workers in high-unemployment states from collecting the additional six weeks of insurance that was passed in H.R. 3548.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        “See, we were compassionate and decided to keep on paying you even longer in spite of the fact that you have no job! Now get out there and vote for us!”

    • USW:

      I was going to post a lengthy point by point-counterpoint. But the hell with it. Time to use the RAZOR.

      A fasciolist proposing fasciolist solutions to a problem created by fasciolism!

      Just Freaking Brilliant!!!!

      Hows that?
      JAC Was Here

      • That, my friend, was perfect. I could not have said it better myself.

        USW

        JAC was here, too!

    • The guy spends 2/3 of the article explaining that there is massive unemployment.

      He spends not one word to why.

      But his ignorance does not stop him from trying to solve a problem based on a cause he does not know.

      Hence, his solutions will simply speed the collapse.

      Once the health care reform bill is passed and signed by the president later this month,

      He apparently believes this act has no influence on employment. But it does. It will create a massive shift of private enterprise employees onto the payroll of government.

      It will burden the medical industry with lower productivity and higher costs – precisely the wrong-way curves for any economy.

      it is imperative that the Executive and the Congress focus their full attention on unemployment and on charting a clear path to finding those millions of missing jobs.

      There is nothing government can do to solve long term unemployment except doing nothing.

      puts U.S. workers, miners and farmers first; is as neomercantilist as the policies of our major trading partners; and results in a medium-term doubling of the 20 million American non-service workers and their contribution to our GDP. Right now, China has almost twice as many manufacturing employees — 100 million — as the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, Taiwan and the UK have combined (55.4 million).

      To do this requires US workers to be paid the same or lower then the Chinese worker.

      Somehow, I do not think that is in his plan. He wants the jobs – but wants Americans to subsidize the difference.

      Such an action will impoverish America, not save it.

      * Adopt “Buy American” requirements related to federal government procurement,

      Though this may sound like a good idea – it would be good if the government earned its own money.

      But it doesn’t. It steals it from the People. Thus, increasing government costs only increases the costs to Americans.

      Another great way to impoverish Americans.

      Bring what’s called a Section 301 case at USTR against China’s “Indigenous Innovation Production Accreditation Program”

      The employment problem of the US is the fault of the Chinese.
      “The reason I am poor is because my neighbor is rich.”

      The moment anyone pulls such emotional crap, you know to pretty much ignore everything else they say.

      * Mitigate, by whatever means available, China’s currency manipulation — which creates a staggering 25% illegal subsidy on Chinese exports — and its other unfair trade practices and illegal subsidies.

      Let’s see. Someone else is paying for 25% of everything you buy is ….. a bad thing???

      If USWep said to me “I will sell you stuff for 25% less than you can buy, as long as you buy it from me” – everyone would think I would be stupid to stand up on my soapbox and yell “USWep is illegal! He is giving me money! Punish him! I want to pay more!!”

      Fund a 10-year program of significant public investment to upgrade and rebuild our nation’s major infrastructure, which would immediately create 18,000 new jobs for each1 billion we spend.

      Yep, let’s take the nation’s wealth – which needs to be multiplied quickly to get the nation out of a recession – which means, into investments that have a high ROI (Return on Investment) – and stuff that wealth into projects that have an ROI measured in decades and centuries.

      This single plan will extend the recession by 5 to 10 years.

      Enact major new tax incentives to encourage businesses to invest in wind and solar energy technologies, state-of-the-art laboratories, and follow-on manufacturing plants and equipment. This effort should include 10% investment tax credits for renovating and modernizing manufacturing facilities, and particular attention needs to be paid to encouraging R&D in America that leads to jobs in America rather than overseas.

      Any tax credit is a good thing.

      Except…. it will be paid for by inflation – not less government funding.

      Distorting the market to spend money into systems that have no return on investment (they are all money losers) will impoverish the nation.

      Reduce corporate income and payroll taxes and in return enact a value-added-tax, or VAT, of the sort which 152 countries in the world already have.

      Reduce taxes with equal reduction of government spending is the only plan.

      This plan changes nothing.

      Conclusion:
      If this is the plan, expect America to turn into Venezuela.

  6. Me Topic #1:

    UN cuts back on investigating fraud

    The United Nations has cut back sharply on investigations into corruption and fraud within its ranks, shelving cases involving the possible theft or misuse of millions of dollars, an Associated Press review has found.

    At least five major cases in Afghanistan, Iraq and Africa are among the inquiries halted as the U.N. scaled back on self-policing over the past year.

    The world body was rocked in the past decade when more than 2,200 companies from some 40 countries colluded with Saddam Hussein’s regime to bilk $1.8 billion from a U.N.-administered oil-for-food program for Iraqi humanitarian relief.

    In response, it established a special anti-corruption unit, the Procurement Task Force, in 2006 that over the next three years uncovered at least 20 other major schemes affecting more than $1 billion in U.N. contracts and international aid.

    But at the beginning of 2009, the United Nations shuttered the agency and diverted its work to the Office of Internal Oversight Services’ permanent investigation division.

    Since then, the number of cases opened, pursued or completed has dropped dramatically and the division has let go most former task force investigators, the AP found in an examination of U.N. documents, audits and e-mails, along with dozens of interviews with current and former U.N. officials and diplomats.

    Over the past year, not a single significant fraud or corruption case has been completed, compared with an average 150 cases a year investigated by the task force. The permanent investigation division decided not to even pursue about 95 cases left over when the task force ceased operation, while another 80 unfinished cases have languished.

    Read the rest of the article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100112/ap_on_bi_ge/un_un_corruption

    Global governing body decides they don’t need to cut back on fraud, since it’s not their money anyway!

    • DKII

      Excellent find. I find it especially enthralling to see that this was the choice that the UN made, yet the United States still seems so eager to funnel money to and through them. If this were a Wall Street business, the federal government would be screaming bloody murder and passing new laws to “regulate” or have “oversight” over them. But since it is the UN, we’ll just ignore it and keep throwing our taxpayer’s money away.

      USW

      • Yes I noticed after the fact that it seemed to go well with your Topic #2. Will read up more on all of these tomorrow.

    • http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=1955664&page=1

      Western governments to double foreign aid to Africa to $50 billion. And the people in his model village were thrilled about getting all this help from Sachs and Jolie.

      But journalist June Arunga doesn’t think this will really help in the long run.

      “You look like an angel if you have all these poor people behind you,” she said. “Of course, they’ll be smiling. Who wouldn’t be smiling if they’ve just been given stuff? But that’s not real life.”

      Arunga grew up in Kenya, and she wonders why Americans waste money on foreign aid to Africa … when many politicians just steal it.

      “Africa is full of governments that steal money,” she said.

      Billions of dollars are hidden by African politicians in Swiss banks or spent on mansions, lavish trips and luxury cars.

      Even food aid gets stolen. When “20/20” went to Kenya a few weeks ago, Kenyan farmers said bags of food aid from their government never arrived.

      “You find most of it is getting lost on the way,” farmer Joseph Nthome said. Lost, but then found … for sale in street markets.

      So much is stolen because we rely primarily on governments to administer foreign aid, and many African governments are kleptocracies.

      • An African farmer needs to buy seed, fertilizer, spend his days tilling and sowing, and then reap the harvest.

        He goes to sell it – only to be faced with competing with the ‘free food’ from the West.

        He sells nothing.

        He lets his field go fallow, and joins the lines for the hand outs.

        This is the Western Re-Colonization Plan. Impoverish the locals to wholesale dependence on the White Man.

        • Dale A Albrecht says:

          I agree with your comment. I have heard similar complaints by other African small business’s. You try and put together a clothing manufacturing business or a tailors shop and get wiped out by all the “free” charity boxes from the west. There for creating a continent of dependants.
          Which reminds me of an old saying about teaching a person to fish and they will never go hungry, as opposed to just handing out the fish.

  7. Me Topic #2:

    Federal Reserve makes record $52.1bn profit

    The Federal Reserve made a profit of $52.1bn (£32.2bn) in 2009, a rise of 47% over the previous year.

    The sum allowed the central bank to pay a record $46.1bn to the US Treasury last year.

    Read the rest of the article: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8454535.stm

    Alas I’m not enough of an economist to interpret this in more than a superficial manner. The newswriters would have you believe that money is being made on interest on the bailout loans, but I’m not convinced that that is actually correct. I wonder how much of it is the Fed “loaning” the US printed money to fund the deficit, and then printing up interest to pay itself.

    • There was a companion headline I heard on the radio that said the government lost over $60B from the bailouts.

    • The FED ‘making money’ when the FED ‘makes the money’ is a mind mushing concept.

      Your mind is not mush.

      Therefore something hokey is going on.

      What this actually means is the FED poured $1.2 trillion into the economy and withdrew $52 billion back.

  8. Me Topic #3:

    Throwing Yourself in the Way: Gasoline Sanctions and Iran

    The Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act (IRPSA), which passed the House of Representatives before Christmas, expands the broad-based sanctions already in place against Iran. The bill seeks to limit Iran’s access to refined petroleum products, which include gasoline and heating oil, as a means of pressuring the government to relinquish its nuclear enrichment program. IRPSA is not only unlikely to succeed but will cause significant collateral damage.

    The leaders of Iran’s government and military will not be affected by a reduction in gasoline imports, and, therefore, will not feel any pressure to halt enrichment. During the 1990s, a common axiom among experts on U.S. sanctions against Iraq was that “Saddam will eat the last sandwich in Baghdad.” It is certain that neither vehicles in Khamenei’s motorcade nor the military will want for gasoline if IRPSA is in fact successful in blocking petroleum imports by Iran. The leaders of non-democratic governments are able to insulate themselves, and their supporters, from the negative consequences of U.S. sanctions.

    In point of fact, the Iranian leadership is itself looking for an excuse to cut government subsidies for gasoline. The Islamic Republic spends billions a year providing gasoline subsidies to its citizens; billions that it cannot afford. However, cutting the amount of free gasoline allowed to each citizen will cause widespread resentment and anger within the population of Iran directed towards the Iranian government. U.S. petroleum sanctions will provide the Iranian leadership with the perfect scapegoat when they cut gas subsidies. The United States should permit refined petroleum exportation to Iran to continue, and allow the Iranian government to reap the public consequences when it cuts subsidies. Tehran is about to shoot itself in the foot, and Washington is throwing itself in the way of the bullet.

    Read the rest of the article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/matthew-sugrue/throwing-yourself-in-the_b_419380.html

    Just have to look at North Korea for guidance here – sanctions make the people poor while the politicians skate by unscathed. And said politicians will be able to (rightly) blame the US for all of it. Another quote from further down the article: “Broad-based sanctions are to economic warfare what indiscriminate carpet-bombing is to conventional warfare. They produce massive civilian ‘casualties.'”

    • Your solution would be?????

    • First, lets be honest, economic sanctions are a form of warfare, using money instead of bullets.

      Second, Iran has shown itself to be hostile to the US, so attacking their wallet is much more humane than dropping bombs.

      Third, Iran is Iran’s problem, meaning the people there are responsible for their government, and its actions. They must make their government accountable just as we must make our accountable to us.

      So I favor the sanctions, hoping a new, peaceful government will arise.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        I can see the point of the article though. If we do NOTHING and the Iranians reduce or eliminate gasoline subsidies, thus making gasoline far more expensive for the people, the people will be angry with the Iranian government. If we do enact sanctions, then this will allow the Iranian government to reduce or eliminate subsidies and blame us for their actions, which could redirect the hatred of the Iranian people towards us instead of towards their own government.

        Of course, the key question is whether the Iranian government will reduce or eliminate subsidies on their own. If they really are crunched for money currently they just might. If we impose additional sanctions, they surely will, knowing that they can scapegoat us in the process.

      • LOI

        But they have not attacked US!

        And, the people don’t have the guns, so how do they hold their govt accountable?

        Would you want to be held accountable, by use of violence from other countries, for the actions of OUR govt?

        Hostile against us is not an attack. Their arming our opponents in their part of the world is not an attack against us. We would do the same and call it self defense.

        Can you show me where economic sanctions have resulted in a new peaceful government arising? These people have memories longer than God himself. All we do is build intergenerational hatred.

        Just my humble opinion.
        Best to you my friend.
        JAC

        • JAC,

          You know I hate it when you use reason and logic against me. Lets see, they have not attacked us, technically true.
          They have supplied weapons, money and training to groups in
          Iraq and Afghanistan that resulted in American lives lost.

          They also supply the same in Pakistan and Palestine. It is Iranian missiles that are fired at Israel.

          The international hatred is there. Should we try something different? I thought that’s what Obama’s foreign policy was all about? I’m just waiting for the results.

          Glad your recovery is going so well. Go easy on me, I’m expecting a Flag attack soon.

          http://michaelmoore.com/words/mike-friends-blog/answering-helen-thomas-why

          January 9th, 2010 3:57 PM
          Answering Helen Thomas on Why

          By Ray McGovern

          Thank God for Helen Thomas, the only person to show any courage at the White House press briefing after President Barack Obama gave a flaccid account of the intelligence screw-up that almost downed an airliner on Christmas Day.

          After Obama briefly addressed L’Affaire Abdulmutallab and wrote “must do better” on the report cards of the national security schoolboys responsible for the near catastrophe, the President turned the stage over to counter-terrorism guru John Brennan and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

          It took 89-year old veteran correspondent Helen Thomas to break through the vapid remarks about rechanneling “intelligence streams,” fixing “no-fly” lists, deploying “behavior detection officers,” and buying more body-imaging scanners.

          Thomas recognized the John & Janet filibuster for what it was, as her catatonic press colleagues took their customary dictation and asked their predictable questions. Instead, Thomas posed an adult query that spotlighted the futility of government plans to counter terrorism with more high-tech gizmos and more intrusions on the liberties and privacy of the traveling public.

          She asked why Abdulmutallab did what he did.

          Thomas: “And what is the motivation? We never hear what you find out on why.”

          Brennan: “Al Qaeda is an organization that is dedicated to murder and wanton slaughter of innocents… They attract individuals like Mr. Abdulmutallab and use them for these types of attacks. He was motivated by a sense of religious sort of drive. Unfortunately, al Qaeda has perverted Islam, and has corrupted the concept of Islam, so that he’s (sic) able to attract these individuals. But al Qaeda has the agenda of destruction and death.”

          Thomas: “And you’re saying it’s because of religion?”

          Brennan: “I’m saying it’s because of an al Qaeda organization that used the banner of religion in a very perverse and corrupt way.”

          Thomas: “Why?”

          Brennan: “I think this is a — long issue, but al Qaeda is just determined to carry out attacks here against the homeland.”

          Thomas: “But you haven’t explained why.”

          Neither did President Obama, nor anyone else in the U.S. political/media hierarchy. All the American public gets is the boilerplate about how al-Qaeda evildoers are perverting a religion and exploiting impressionable young men.

          There is almost no discussion about why so many people in the Muslim world object to U.S. policies so strongly that they are inclined to resist violently and even resort to suicide attacks.

          Obama’s Non-Answer

          I had been hoping Obama would say something intelligent about what drove Abdulmutallab to do what he did, but the President uttered a few vacuous comments before sending in the clowns. This is what he said before he walked away from the podium:

          “It is clear that al Qaeda increasingly seeks to recruit individuals without known terrorist affiliations … to do their bidding. … And that’s why we must communicate clearly to Muslims around the world that al Qaeda offers nothing except a bankrupt vision of misery and death … while the United States stands with those who seek justice and progress. … That’s the vision that is far more powerful than the hatred of these violent extremists.”

          But why it is so hard for Muslims to “get” that message? Why can’t they end their preoccupation with dodging U.S. missiles in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Gaza long enough to reflect on how we are only trying to save them from terrorists while simultaneously demonstrating our commitment to “justice and progress”?

          Does a smart fellow like Obama expect us to believe that all we need to do is “communicate clearly to Muslims” that it is al Qaeda, not the U.S. and its allies, that brings “misery and death”? Does any informed person not know that the unprovoked U.S.-led invasion of Iraq killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and displaced 4.5 million from their homes? How is that for “misery and death”?

          Rather than a failure to communicate, U.S. officials are trying to rewrite recent history, which seems to be much easier to accomplish with the Washington press corps and large segments of the American population than with the Muslim world.

          But why isn’t there a frank discussion by America’s leaders and media about the real motivation of Muslim anger toward the United States? Why was Helen Thomas the only journalist to raise the touchy but central question of motive?

          Peeking Behind the Screen

          We witnessed a similar phenomenon when the 9/11 Commission Report tiptoed into a cautious discussion of possible motives behind the 9/11 attacks. To their credit, the drafters of that report apparently went as far as their masters would allow, in gingerly introducing a major elephant into the room:

          “America’s policy choices have consequences. Right or wrong, it is simply a fact that American policy regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and American actions in Iraq are dominant staples of popular commentary across the Arab and Muslim world.” (p. 376)

          When asked later about the flabby way that last sentence ended, former Congressman Lee Hamilton, Vice-Chair of the 9/11 Commission, explained that there had been a Donnybrook over whether that paragraph could be included at all.

          The drafters also squeezed in the reason given by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed as to why he “masterminded” the attacks on 9/11:

          “By his own account, KSM’s animus toward the United States stemmed … from his violent disagreement with U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel.”

          Would you believe that former Vice President Dick Cheney has also pointed to U.S. support for Israel as one of the “true sources of resentment”? This unique piece of honesty crept into his speech to the American Enterprise Institute on May 21, 2009.

          Sure, he also trotted out the bromide that the terrorists hate “all the things that make us a force for good in the world.” But the Israel factor slipped into the speech, perhaps an inadvertent acknowledgement of the Israeli albatross adorning the neck of U.S. policy in the Middle East.

          Very few pundits and academicians are willing to allude to this reality, presumably out of fear for their future career prospects.

          Former senior CIA officer Paul Pillar, now a professor at Georgetown University, is one of the few willing to refer, in his typically understated way, to “all the other things … including policies and practices that affect the likelihood that people … will be radicalized, and will try to act out the anger against us.” One has to fill in the blanks regarding what those “other things” are.

          But no worries. Secretary Napolitano has a fix for this unmentionable conundrum. It’s called “counter-radicalization,” which she describes thusly:

          “How do we identify someone before they become radicalized to the point where they’re ready to blow themselves up with others on a plane? And how do we communicate better American values and so forth … around the globe?”

          Better communication. That’s the ticket.

          Hypocrisy and Double Talk

          But Napolitano doesn’t acknowledge the underlying problem, which is that many Muslims have watched Washington’s behavior closely for many years and view U.S. declarations about peace, justice, democracy and human rights as infuriating examples of hypocrisy and double talk.

          So, Washington’s sanitized discussion about motives for terrorism seems more intended for the U.S. domestic audience than the Muslim world.

          After all, people in the Middle East already know how Palestinians have been mistreated for decades; how Washington has propped up Arab dictatorships; how Muslims have been locked away at Guantanamo without charges; how the U.S. military has killed civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere; how U.S. mercenaries have escaped punishment for slaughtering innocents.

          The purpose of U.S. “public diplomacy” appears more designed to shield Americans from this unpleasant reality, offering instead feel-good palliatives about the beneficence of U.S. actions. Most American journalists and politicians go along with the charade out of fear that otherwise they would be accused of lacking patriotism or sympathizing with “the enemy.”

          Commentators who are neither naïve nor afraid are simply shut out of the Fawning Corporate Media (FCM). Salon.com’s Glen Greenwald, for example, has complained loudly about “how our blind, endless enabling of Israeli actions fuels terrorism directed at the U.S.,” and how it is taboo to point this out.

          Greenwald recently called attention to a little-noticed Associated Press report on the possible motives of the 23-year-old Nigerian Abdulmutallab. The report quoted his Yemeni friends to the effect that the he was “not overtly extremist.” But they noted that he was open about his sympathies toward the Palestinians and his anger over Israel’s actions in Gaza. (emphasis added)

          Former CIA specialist on al Qaeda, Michael Scheuer, has been still more outspoken on what he sees as Israel’s tying down the American Gulliver in the Middle East. Speaking Monday on C-SPAN, he complained bitterly that any debate on the issue of American support for Israel and its effects is normally squelched.

          Scheuer added that the Israel Lobby had just succeeded in getting him removed from his job at the Jamestown Foundation think tank for saying that Obama was “doing what I call the Tel Aviv Two Step.”

          More to the point, Scheuer asserted:

          “For anyone to say that our support for Israel doesn’t hurt us in the Muslim world … is to just defy reality.”

          Beyond loss of work, those who speak out can expect ugly accusations. The Israeli media network Arutz Sheva, which is considered the voice of the settler movement, weighed in strongly, citing Scheuer’s C-SPAN remarks and branding them “blatantly anti-Semitic.”

          Media Squelching

          As for media squelching, I continue to be amazed at how otherwise informed folks express total surprise when I refer them to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s statement about his motivation for attacking the United States, as cited on page 147 of the 9/11 Commission Report:

          “By his own account, KSM’s animus toward the United States stemmed not from his experience there as a student, but rather from his violent disagreement with U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel.”

          And one can understand how even those following such things closely can get confused. Five years after the 9/11 Commission Report, on Aug. 30, 2009, readers of the neoconservative Washington Post were given a diametrically different view, based on what the Post called “an intelligence summary:”

          “KSM’s limited and negative experience in the United States — which included a brief jail stay because of unpaid bills — almost certainly helped propel him on his path to becoming a terrorist … He stated that his contact with Americans, while minimal, confirmed his view that the United States was a debauched and racist country.”

          Apparently, the Post found this revisionist version politically more convenient, in that it obscured Mohammed’s other explanation implicating “U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel.” It’s much more comforting to view KSM as a disgruntled visitor who nursed his personal grievances into justification for mass murder.

          An unusually candid view of the dangers accruing from the U.S. identification with Israel’s policies appeared five years ago in an unclassified study published by the Pentagon-appointed U.S. Defense Science Board on Sept. 23, 2004. Contradicting President George W. Bush, the board stated:

          “Muslims do not ‘hate our freedom,’ but rather, they hate our policies. The overwhelming majority voice their objections to what they see as one-sided support in favor of Israel and against Palestinian rights, and the longstanding, even increasing support for what Muslims collectively see as tyrannies, most notably Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Pakistan, and the Gulf States.

          “Thus, when American public diplomacy talks about bringing democracy to Islamic societies, this is seen as no more than self-serving hypocrisy.”

          Abdulmutallab’s Attack

          Getting back to Abdulmutallab and his motive in trying to blow up the airliner, how was this individual without prior terrorist affiliations suddenly transformed into an international terrorist ready to die while killing innocents?

          If, as John Brennan seems to suggest, al Qaeda terrorists are hard-wired for terrorism at birth for the “wanton slaughter of innocents,” how are they able to jump-start a privileged 23-year old Nigerian, inculcate in him with the acquired characteristics of a terrorist, and persuade him to do the bidding of al Qaeda/Persian Gulf?

          As indicated above, the young Nigerian seems to have had particular trouble with Israel’s wanton slaughter of more than a thousand civilians in Gaza a year ago, a brutal campaign that was defended in Washington as justifiable self-defense.

          Moreover, it appears that Abdulmuttallab is not the only anti-American “terrorist” so motivated. When the Saudi and Yemeni branches of al Qaeda announced that they were uniting into “al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula,” their combined rhetoric railed against the Israeli attack on Gaza.

          And on Dec. 30, Humam Khalil Abu Mulal al-Balawi, a 32-year-old Palestinian-born Jordanian physician, killed seven American CIA operatives and one Jordanian intelligence officer near Khost, Afghanistan, when he detonated a suicide bomb.

          Though most U.S. media stories treated al-Balawi as a fanatical double-agent driven by irrational hatreds, other motivations could be gleaned by carefully reading articles about his personal history.

          Al-Balawi’s mother told Agence France-Presse that her son had never been an “extremist.” Al-Balawi’s widow, Defne Bayrak, made a similar statement to Newsweek. In a New York Times article, al-Balawi’s brother was quoted as describing him as a “very good brother” and a “brilliant doctor.”

          So what led al-Balawi to take his own life in order to kill U.S. and Jordanian intelligence operatives?

          Al-Balawi’s widow said her husband “started to change” after the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. His brother said al-Balawi “changed” during last year’s three-week-long Israeli offensive in Gaza, which killed about 1,300 Palestinians.

          When al-Balawi volunteered with a medical organization to treat injured Palestinians in Gaza, he was arrested by Jordanian authorities, his brother said.

          It was after that arrest that the Jordanian intelligence service apparently coerced or “recruited” al-Balawi to become a spy who would penetrate al Qaeda’s hierarchy and provide actionable intelligence to the CIA.

          “If you catch a cat and put it in a corner, she will jump on you,” the brother said in explaining why al-Balawi would turn to a suicide attack.

          “My husband was anti-American; so am I,” his widow said, adding that her two little girls would grow up fatherless but that she had no regrets.

          Answering Helen

          Are we starting to get the picture of what the United States is up against in the Muslim world?

          Does Helen Thomas deserve an adult answer to her question about motive? Has President Obama been able to assimilate all this?

          Or is the U.S. political/media establishment incapable of confronting this reality and/or taking meaningful action to alleviate the underlying causes of the violence?

          Is the reported reaction of a CIA official to al-Balawi’s attack the appropriate one: “Last week’s attack will be avenged. Some very bad people will eventually have a very bad day.”

          Revenge has not always turned out very well in the past.

          Does anyone remember the brutal killing of four Blackwater contractors on March 31, 2004, when they took a wrong turn and ended up in the Iraqi city of Fallujah — and how U.S. forces virtually leveled that large city in retribution after George W. Bush won his second term the following November?

          If you read only the Fawning Corporate Media, you would blissfully think that the killing of the four Blackwater operatives was the work of fanatical animals who got – along with their neighbors – what they deserved. You wouldn’t know that the killings represented the second turn in that specific cycle of violence.

          On March 22, 2004, Israeli forces assassinated the then-spiritual leader of Hamas in Gaza, Sheikh Yassin — a withering old man, blind and confined to a wheelchair.

          That murder, plus sloppy navigation by the Blackwater men, set the stage for the next set of brutalities. The Blackwater operatives were killed by a group that described itself as the “Sheikh Yassin Revenge Brigade.”

          Pamphlets and posters were all over the scene of the attack; one of the trucks that pulled around body parts of the mercenaries had a poster of Yassin in its window, as did store fronts all over Fallujah.

          We can wish Janet Napolitano luck with her “counter-radicalization” project and President Obama with his effort to “communicate clearly to Muslims,” but there will be no diminution in the endless cycles of violence unless legitimate grievances are addressed on all sides.

          It might also help if the American people were finally let in on the root causes for what otherwise get dismissed as irrational actions by Muslims.

        • JAC…curiosity here. Questions: First, other than Hezbollah and the Palestinian issue, do you believe that Iran directly funds al Qaeda? If not, why not? Second, do you think Iran funds INDIRECTLY the Armed Islamic Group (GIA), in Algeria? If not, why not? Third, do you think Iran directly funds Al-Jihad? If not, why not? Fourth, do you think that Iran directly funds Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya? If not, why not? Fifth, do you believe that Iran directly funds Al-Ummah? If not, why not? Sixth, do you believe Iran directly funds the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade? If not, why not? Seventh, do you believe that Iran directly funds the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP)? If not, why not? Eighth, do you believe that Iran directly funds HAMAS? If not, why not? Do you believe that Iran directly fund the Palestine Islamic Jihad? If not, why not? Ninth, do you believe that Iran INDIRECTLY funds Harakat ul-Ansar? If not, why not? Tenth, do you believe that Iran INDIRECTLY funds Harakat ul-Mujahidin? If not, why not? Eleventh, do you believe that Iran INDIRECTLY funds Jaish-e-Mohammed? If not, why not? Twelfth, do you believe that Iran INDIRECTLY funds Lashkar-e-Tayyiba? If not, why not? Thirteenth, do you think that Iran directly funds the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command? If not, why not?

          Of greater importance listed below, do you believe that Iran directly funds the Abu Sayyaf Group? (Phillipines, Canary Islands, Bali, Tahiti, New Guinea, Sumatra, Timor, Fiji, Tonga, and the Marshall’s. If not, why not?

          Do you believe that Iran directly funds the Qibla and People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (South Africa)? If not why not?

          Do you believe that Iran directly funds Jamaat ul-Fuqra (Uzbekistan)? If not, why not?

          Do you believe that Iran directly funds the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (Turkey)? If not, why not?

          Do you believe that Iran directly funds Jamaat ul-Fuqra (United States and Pakistan)? If not, why not?

          Of course, I do not expect you to answer each question, my friend. I have listed the locations and names of the groups that are funded directly or indirectly by Iran. Each of these groups are hostile towards the US and Western Civs.In addition, I will never believe that there is not a world wide direction in which Iran is directly involved.

          Now, as to sanctions, I do not know the answer but ignoring Iran will not make it go away. You and Black Flag and others have long said to “leave them alone”? Ok, leave them alone….for how long? Engage in normal trade with a known enemy on the Obama hopes that if we play nice, they will play nice?

          Do you want me to believe that we, the United States, are the cause of the Islamic expansion (funded in large by Iran through the above listed terrorist groups) into the South China Sea and the Philipines?

          I have already acquiesced that Iran will be a nuclear power within ten months and not the two years that is predicted. Time will prove me right or wrong, but I am holding an inside straight flush, here.

          I do not know the answers but I do understand encroachment and the funding of terrorist organizations with the sole purpose of Islamic domination (no, this is not a repeat of the Communist takeover of the world…this is much stronger). But what the hell, I am entitled to my theories as well as any other on here.

          So, I guess, hostile is a term and understanding that I will use.

          (Whew)…by the way, these assessments are from the latest intelligence reports. I know, I know….US intelligence is a contradiction of terms…but I also know what is propaganda and what is not.

          Have a great day my friend…luv ya man…

          • D13:

            You didn’t really need to list all the groups. A simple number would be fine as I would have believed you. But it is interesting.

            Here’s the key Colonel.

            IF WE WANT TO BE FREE AND LIVE IN A COUNTRY WHERE INDIVIDUAL FREEDOM AND LIBERTY ARE THE RULE…….then there is a core moral principle that MUST be met to allow that to happen.

            AND I MEAN IT MUST BE MET, ALL THE TIME, NO EXCEPTIONS. Failure to adhere to that principle gives the rest of the world a legitimate reason, and authority, to act against us in any manner they choose.

            That principle is NON INITIATION OF COERSIVE FORCE AGAINST THE INNOCENT.

            This means we DO NOT attack, directly or indirectly, by arms or economic sanctions, any country that has not ATTACKED US.

            And I mean US, not our friends, not our allies, not the guys we like or sell us oil, but US.

            WE AS A FREE AND MORAL NATION HAVE THE RIGHT TO DEFEND OURSELVES AND RETALIATE AGAINST ANY WHO ATTACK US.

            That is the principle that must hold. No exceptions. I can not think of a single American life I would be willing to ask to sacrifice itself to prevent Iran or Islam from taking hold in Tonga, Fiji or Pakistan. So I ask you directly. Why should I care what happens to the rest of the world regarding either Islam or Iran?

            Does either of them Truly pose a threat to freedom and liberty here in the USA, or even North America?

            Your conclusion by the way raises the question of whether we are supposed to be afraid of Iran or Islam. Do you really think we need to engage in a WAR over religion?

            I am not naive Colonel. If you recall I have said I think Iran poses a long term threat. There is never any shortage of evil men who wish to dominate others. So I do not underestimate anyone in what they may or may not be up to. I do not think Iran would simply leave everyone alone tomorrow if we left today. But I do believe the air would go out of the sails and in the not to distant future Iran will collapse due to its expansionist agenda, or it will pull back to Iran.

            Constantly poking Iran and everyone else in the world in the eye and continuing 100 years of failed strategy. It is time for some new approaches that fit within our own ideology of FREEDOM and LIBERTY. And that recognize the dynamics of that part of the world and that our efforts are increasing the problems…long term.

            It is time to remove the fuel from the fire. Keep a sharp eye, but get the hell out of the region and let them settle out. How long do you think Iran can fund its global jihad/caliphate before the locals throw the SOBs to the gallows?

            I think the responses, and your reaction to some extent, are stuck in past paradigms. We need a new paradigm. One that puts our liberty first and also extends our time horizons.

            As I said months ago, our focus should be on the western hemisphere. Putting bad feelings to rest and building new friends based on shared values and interests. Not on our traditional bullying but on actual friendship. That means NOT proping up corrupt govts for the sake of stability. It means taking sides with the people of central and south America, not the elite.

            No form of radicalized Islam is going to take the western hemisphere unless WE set the stage or allow it to be set. Furthermore, no such form of religion or political system will maintain control over the remainder of the world for very long. Not when they see what freedom and prosperity look like in the western hemisphere.

            Like I said, time for a new paradigm.

            Oh, and just so there is no confusion. If Iran attacked US, directly or proven indirectly, then the Iranian people would be able to make arrowheads and pretty glass baubles from what was left of their military and govt institutions and facilities.

            Great day back at ya.

            Peace and freedom
            JAC

            • JAC says: That is the principle that must hold. No exceptions. I can not think of a single American life I would be willing to ask to sacrifice itself to prevent Iran or Islam from taking hold in Tonga, Fiji or Pakistan. So I ask you directly. Why should I care what happens to the rest of the world regarding either Islam or Iran?

              D13 responds: If you do not care, that is fine. My whole point in listing all of this is one thing only….. Iran is not a peaceful nation. That is my only point. It is hostile…period. It does not have to attack the US to be a hostile country.

              JAC says: Does either of them Truly pose a threat to freedom and liberty here in the USA, or even North America?

              D13 says: Not at all. Again, my point is not to the US.

              JAC says: Your conclusion by the way raises the question of whether we are supposed to be afraid of Iran or Islam. Do you really think we need to engage in a WAR over religion?

              D13 says: No, sir.

              JAC says: It is time to remove the fuel from the fire. Keep a sharp eye, but get the hell out of the region and let them settle out. How long do you think Iran can fund its global jihad/caliphate before the locals throw the SOBs to the gallows?

              D13 says: I have no problem with that whatsoever. However, how long can they fund? Forever. I personally believe it is not going to stop and the worse will come when it achieves its nuclear weapon. Not against the US….but the rest of Persia and I do not share BF’s theory that Russia or China will stop them. They will not, in my opinion.

              JAC says: I think the responses, and your reaction to some extent, are stuck in past paradigms. We need a new paradigm. One that puts our liberty first and also extends our time horizons.

              D13 says: Perhaps so. I will not deny that. But I do deny the fact that ignoring Iran will not deter them one bit. Their agenda, in my opinion, reminds me of the bitter conflicts now between Democrats and Republicans. A refocusing of agendas in order to get a bigger on through.

              JAC says: Oh, and just so there is no confusion. If Iran attacked US, directly or proven indirectly, then the Iranian people would be able to make arrowheads and pretty glass baubles from what was left of their military and govt institutions and facilities.

              D13 says: I agree and never have said that Iran poses a threat to the United States. It probably does on an indirect basis but not militarily. Iran will never attack the US directly…it will continue to fund the aforementioned surrogates to continue to hit our embassies and things.

              Just so you do not misunderstand…. It is not Iran attacking the US….but the bigger picture. Iran is not the peaceful nation that some want us to believe. Our policy towards Iran does not have a thing to with the South China Sea or the Philipines, so I will not buy that expansion into those regions is a result of US policies towards Iran….that would be a stretch…a REAL stretch. How does the Israeli issues in Lebanon and the West BAnk have anything to do with Iran? Why would our policy towards Iran have anything to do with Lebanon. If Israel attacked and took over the entire Palestinian area, what threat does THAT pose to Iran? No threat at all.

              • D13:

                Seems we are much more in agreement than perhaps you thought.

                D13: “But I do deny the fact that ignoring Iran will not deter them one bit.” AND; “It is not Iran attacking the US….but the bigger picture. Iran is not the peaceful nation that some want us to believe”

                JAC: I agree. As I said before, there is good reason to think their leadership has BIG dreams.

                D13: “Our policy towards Iran does not have a thing to with the South China Sea or the Philipines, so I will not buy that expansion into those regions is a result of US policies towards Iran….”

                JAC: I agree, to a large extent but not completely. Their recent efforts may be a reaction, or just using as an excuse to accelerate already existing plans.

                D13: “However, how long can they fund? Forever.”

                JAC: Disagree here. We have been at the global domination game for only about 50 years and we are busted. Don’t think they can do it forever, even using religion.

                Tribe trumps their mideastern version of the religion. Even in their own back yards.

                Biggest point, if you recall from past post, Iran is the rattlesnake. I want to back away to see what it will do. I will leave it in peace if it does not advance. BUT I will NOT take my eye off the snake while I go about cleaning up my own house.

                Sleep well Colonel.
                I’ve got watch tonight
                JAC

              • D13: Iran is not a peaceful nation. That is my only point. It is hostile…period. It does not have to attack the US to be a hostile country.

                You state Iran is hostile – but refuse to acknowledge the reason.

                Either you must believe they are insane or that they are rational actors.

                If the former, our discussion ends.

                If the latter, why do you believe they are hostile?

                D13 says: I have no problem with that whatsoever. However, how long can they fund? Forever.

                Or, about 1/100 the time the US can fund. I wonder who needs to stop first?

                D13:I do not share BF’s theory that Russia or China will stop them. They will not, in my opinion.

                Why not?

                Again, use replacement theory.

                How do you think the US sould react to nuclear war going off on the US border?

                Thus, why do you believe the Russians will react differently?

                D13 says: Perhaps so. I will not deny that. But I do deny the fact that ignoring Iran will not deter them one bit.

                Perhaps.

                Their issue has as much to with the US diabolical support for Israel.

                Their issues revolves around Israeli abuses in Palestine and the plight of the Palestinian people.

                D13:I will not buy that expansion into those regions is a result of US policies towards Iran

                That is because you do not know why Iran resists the USA and the reasons for the hostility.

                The US is a global hegemony.

                It is an imperialist power.

                When a hegemony acts upon a weaker power, it alarms all others; for if such action is uncontested on the stage of the world opinion, the risk to every nation is extreme.

                Thus, when the US moves against Iran, it rises hostility globally against the US.

                It would take most of the non-aligned world, combined, to actively dent US power. They cannot allow one to bear the brunt without some form of resistance – militarily, violent or merely hostile rhetoric – but at least something token.

                No one worries if Tonga beats the war drum against Australia. Tonga threatens no one

                Everyone worries when the USA beats a war drum against “anyone”.

                US threatens everyone.

                D143:How does the Israeli issues in Lebanon and the West BAnk have anything to do with Iran?

                It directly impacts the stability of the region where Iran finds its territory.

                This is strange to you ?

                D13: If Israel attacked and took over the entire Palestinian area, what threat does THAT pose to Iran? No threat at all.

                Massive. It would plunge the entire region into war. Iran is in that region. It would affect Iran immensely.

          • D13,

            “Black Flag and others have long said leave them alone.”

            Yep.

            The Iranians react to USA action. Stop acting, they have no reaction.

            You believe that Algeria has no right to self-determination? That US and French interests are supreme there?

            What does USA want in Uzbekistan? Why does it concern you?

            What does USA want in Kurdistan? Why does it concern you?

            etc. etc.

            You want American blood split in these countries….for what?

            Let them be what they will be.

            This American psychosis of “Either an ally or enemy” is a huge and dangerous standing that has polluted America for far too long.

            • I have no problem with any of what you said except, I do not buy into the theory at all that USA action towards Iran makes them sponsor terrorist ties in countries that do not concern the US.
              I could care less about Uzbekistan or Kurdistan. I do not give a tinkers damn. My only point that I was making, is that Iran is not peaceful, has no intention of being peaceful, and will exert its influence. I do not care at all…it is an observation…until it affects me.

              Please do not put words into my mouth about American blood spilled in these countries. I have never said that and do not wish to engage in any of these countries. I am merely stating that leaving Iran alone will not stop the expansion of their desire to overthrow governments and the funding of the terrorist in the rest of the world for a larger agenda. I do believe that they have a much larger agenda. Their funding in areas that do not affect us are not a result of our policies so do we do anything about it? Of course not and I would not vote to do so, if I had a vote. They may not have a design on the US in particular and would never be stupid enough to attack us militarily…this I already know.

              So we run a Carrier group into the Arabian Sea and the Hormuz Strait…ok..so what. Iran says….hmmmm, the Americans pissed us off so lets over throw the government in Buttwipe Tanzania? A carrier group next to Iran makes them fund a terror unit in the South China Sea? I don’t think so.

              • I do not buy into the theory at all that USA action towards Iran makes them sponsor terrorist ties in countries that do not concern the US.

                Are you not a tactician?

                Do you chose only to engage your enemy on your own battle front or do you prod and poke them in every place possible so to disperse their forces, distract them, divert them, trap them….?

                Iran cannot confront the US directly. It can only do so indirectly. Why do you expect something different?

                My only point that I was making, is that Iran is not peaceful, has no intention of being peaceful, and will exert its influence.

                To contradict its history of an age older then the USA itself – you boldly state its intentions. I cannot see where you make such a claim other then from hubris.

                I am merely stating that leaving Iran alone will not stop the expansion of their desire to overthrow governments and the funding of the terrorist in the rest of the world for a larger agenda.

                You offer a hypothesis that contradicts their modern history.

                There is no compelling reason for them to change their historical perspective.

                They, like you, prefer regional stability and peace while maintaining their independence and sovereignty.

                Do you really believe Russia would allow a resurgence Iranian empire to spring up on her sensitive border? Do you really think Iran is that stupid to try?

                A carrier group next to Iran makes them fund a terror unit in the South China Sea? I don’t think so.

                Again, test your idea with replacement theory.

                Russia sails a carrier group into the Caribbean Sea and bombs Jamaica.

                How do you think USA would react?

                If you cannot explain the response in this context, you cannot explain them for Iran.

      • “Third, Iran is Iran’s problem, meaning the people there are responsible for their government, and its actions. They must make their government accountable just as we must make our accountable to us.”

        You just justified 9/11.

        • Sorry DKII….there is no justification for 9/11.

          • D13,

            You do not see any justification for 9/11?

            If you do not, what justification is there for the USA to bomb Iraqi, Afghan, Pakistani, Somalian, Yemeni civilians, so on and so forth?

            That’s the rub of the Law of Mutuality.

            If you justify it, they justify it.

        • DKII

          I don’t understand how that statement justifies or could be used to even rationalize 9/11 from the bad guy’s perspective.

          What am I missing?

          JAC

          • D13 – you’re being disingenuous here. Reread the post above mine.

            JAC – LOI said that sanctions (economic attacks/warfare) against the Iranians people are justified because they should be holding their government accountable, and are thus responsible for their government’s actions. Therefore by that same logic attacks against the American people by countries in the Middle East are similarly justified, including 9/11 – unless you believe that the US government has really done nothing to provoke such a response.

            Note – I disagree with both statements. If you kill my brother and are a credible threat against myself I am not justified in killing your innocent brother in retaliation. The terrorists are better off from a PR standpoint to stick to government/military targets, too.

            • DKII

              OK, got it. I missed the first part of LOI’s statement where the sanctions were justified because the people were responsible.

              Makes since now, and I agree with your logic statement.

              I also don’t think they can be held any more responsible for theirs right now than we can. Neither have any real control.

              Good to see you droppin in once in awhile again.
              JAC

            • Oops. I was looking in a different context. Reread and understand your position better. Don’t necessarily agree with it in total but I understand from where you are coming.

  9. Hi Birdman

    I read the EO ESTABLISHMENT OF THE COUNCIL OF GOVERNORS. It looks to me like Dear Reader is taking yet another step in the consolidation of his power. It seems many of his EO involve Homeland Security, correct? The Interpol EO gave me the same gut feeling as this EO has.

    I feel like I’m a zebra watching the lions build a corral around my herd……

    • Cyndi, I also read the Executive Order.

      D13, any inside information that you can share?

      • A little…but of little concern for the time being. Will do some clandestine investigation for you tho.

      • Hi Birdman,

        I take it you find it distubing too, right? Do you think Americans are being corraled?

        • I’m not sure what they are doing or why.

          • I’m not sure myself but I have my suspicions. I get the feeling all these EOs are in preparation for something big. Something the American people aren’t expecting, and won’t like. Have you ever received the email explaining how to catch wild pigs? First you put food out and once they get used to the food, little by little, you build a fence around them? That’s what these EOs and entitlement programs remind me of. The entitlements are the food, the EOs the fence. Taken separately, the EOs don’t seem like a problem, but when they are considered as a group, my red flag deploys.

  10. Could find more I suppose but it’s nearing bedtime for me and I wouldn’t want to show up USW anyway. 😉

    • That should never be a concern 🙂 I am happy to be shown up at any point! It means people are engaged and paying attention!

  11. I have a question for ya’ll. Now that most of my fellow island dwellers have returned from the States, I’ve been asking them about any superficial changes they noticed, such as, empty store fronts, more homeless, panhandlers, etc. I haven’t been in the US since Sept 08. Of those I’ve spoken to, not one has noticed any changes other then my boyfriend who showed me some video of the neighborhood my house is in. He pointed out that there are no for sale signs. He even showed me some new store front/offices in the area. I didn’t notice any outward decline in wealth. This is in east central Florida, supposedly a very hard hit area, economically. What gives? Have any of you noticed anything in your areas or are things pretty much the same?

    • In central Alabama closed business are everywhere. In my department in the last 24 months we have went from 20 employees to 7. Corporate wide (offices in the southeast, east and northeast) we are down about 35% in number of employees. I have fears of further cuts in the next 6 months.

    • v. Holland says:

      I’ve certainly noticed some changes in my area but nothing that would jump out at anyone who didn’t know the area-very few for sale signs as your boyfriend noticed, several dry cleaners out of business, donut shop gone and others but there spread out, not in one area where you would notice them if you hadn’t been using them in the past. Some areas have more houses with overgrown lawns. City not keeping things as pretty and neat as I was used to. Seems to be more homeless at busy intersections asking for money-although in the city, I think they have actually started there own little corporation where they live together and have work schedules. None of it is overt, there aren’t homeless people on every corner but if you live here-you notice.

      • Thanks V and Bama. that’s what I was expecting to hear from the returnees. To a one, they complained about the States being expensive but little else. Maybe because they were on ‘vacation’/visiting, they didn’t notice. I’m trying to get a feel for what’s really going on. The MSM acts like everything is going fine, but then the blogs and smaller news sites say things aren’t so rosy. I would have expected more people to be outraged by what’s going on economically but most don’t seem to be, at least here on this island.

    • In my area 1/3 of downtown is closed up. Home sale signs are plentiful. The vacant homes with no signs are there too. The one bright spot- The Landing Strip- adult entertainment- has just gotten a huge remodel.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Cyndi,

      In Indianapolis, the most established area of town for the old-rich is called Meridian/Kessler. The last time I drove up the main street of this historic area of large/expensive homes/mansions, there were 23 of them for sale. In good economic times there are 2 or 3, certainly not TWENTY-THREE.

      Further anecdotal evidence, ALL of the strip-malls in the Indianapolis area are now half-empty. I am not sure how the owners of these strip-malls are going to pay their mortgages with hardly any tenants paying leases/rents.

      Things are definitely worse here than the media would have us believe here locally.

      • I guess the island dwellers must not have been paying attention then. I figure they would notice the difference from the last time they were home. I’m confused….

  12. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/White-House-credits-stimulus-apf-1320185051.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=3&asset=&ccode=

    This pretty much has reached the level of complete farce.

    The ONLY way that anyone could conclusively prove that Obama’s actions have created or saved 1.5 to 2 million jobs at this point would be to perform the following experiment:

    1. Create 3 parallel universes with identical starting conditions right at the latest financial collapse.

    2. In one universe, do exactly what we have done to date.

    3. In the second universe, do nothing.

    4. In the third universe, enact massive tax cuts and massively slash government programs and waste.

    5. Compare results.

    Since this cannot be done, their “facts” that they have created or saved any jobs at all are dubious at best. The fact that millions of jobs have been LOST while Obama has been in office is evidentially factual. His claim that even more would have been lost absent the action the government has taken is simply not something the average person is actually going to believe in the face of the evidence they see around them.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      One further note on this – In order to even attempt to prove these “fantastic” claims, you would have to not only show that a job was created or saved (difficult), but also that the job which was created or saved was created or saved AS A RESULT OF the stimulus package (almost impossible).

      I know that the government believes that it has done a marvelous job of dumbing down the American people, but I don’t think we are that stupid yet. My gut feeling is that the majority of people when they read this or here the story on the “news” are just going to say, “Yeah, SURE!” and then proceed to decide whether they should be laughing uproariously or crying.

  13. Judy Sabatini says:

    On topic #5

    No, I don’t believe the recession is over. if it is, then why is Nevada number 2 in ranking of unemployment and foreclosures? We have bad unemployment here in Reno alone, people can’t find jobs, people are still getting laid off, or their hours cut back, which means less pay. The jobs that are out there are either nursing, medical technicians, mechanics, insurance sales people, Chemists, and other jobs that require speaking Spanish, or you have to have some sort of Bachelors degree in.

    They are even laying off teachers, police officers, firemen, and city workers in order to cut the budget. They are doing away with certain programs in schools, such as music, arts, and sports. In the university’s, they are making major cuts to certain classes as well, as well as laying off professors, but are raising tuition’s by at least 5 to 10 percent.

    So, is the recession over, just ask the people here in Reno and the rest of Nevada. And who do we have to thank for that, none other than Harry Reid. He has been no more help, than the man on the moon.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      State and local governments will always cut police, fire, and education first.

      Why? Because it is the easiest place to save money? NO!

      The reason is, because it is the most visible, and the most alarming to the public. Most of the public thinks it is a travesty to cut fire protection, law enforcement, and education. This motivates the public to favor any new ways the government can come up with to fund these “critical areas”, meaning taxes, gambling, legalization of certain drugs, or whatever. In the end it is just a grab for more of your money.

      There are plenty of other places where they COULD cut first, but they conciously and purposely CHOOSE to cut fire, police, and education FIRST. That should tell you something important.

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        What gripes me is when they can spend $400,000 and more for sculptures around town, when they can be doing more for the city to be bringing in the revenue they complain about losing. Shops are closing up, casino’s are closing up, they tear down buildings, and instead of rebuilding anything new in that spot, they turn it into parking lots. That’s one thing Reno doesn’t need, is another parking lot.

        People here have given the city ideas of what they think would be good for bringing in more tourists to the city. Downtown Reno looks like pigs live there. It’s dirty, and smells, even though they try to move the panhandlers or people that sleep on the sidewalks, they come back. The only thing that downtown is good for, is souvenir and pawn shops. I wouldn’t come up here if I didn’t live here.

        They keep the bowling stadium closed for most of the year, except for the 4 or 5 months they are opened for tournaments, locals aren’t allowed to use it the rest of the year, because bowling alleys complain it would take away from them.

        What Reno needs to do, is build more family oriented places like Vegas, but not as big. It has also been mentioned to build a Nascar race track out in Stead, even though there is one in Vegas, but, there are those that cannot afford to go to Vegas to watch.

        What they also need to do is, instead of laying off where people they are needed, is for the city workers to take a cut in pay themselves. Our former city manager was making roughly $450,000 a year, but he took another job, I think if Calif, not exactly sure on that though. Not sure what the new one makes.

        This city is good at wasting money, but doesn’t stop to think about spending it on useless stuff.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Judy,

          If the casinos are closing, it MUST be bad. Casinos are usually decently recession-proof.

          The fact that they are closing means that the US is over-saturated with casinos (possible now that most States have them) and it is also possible that the economy is MUCH WORSE than anyone is telling us.

          If I were a betting man, I would say it is a combination of those 2 factors.

          • Judy Sabatini says:

            Peter, I didn’t mean to imply that all of them are, just a few of them in the downtown area have closed. But, what they have done to about 3 of them, is turn them into condos, so, I guess that’s a good thing, but the ones that remain closed, they have no idea on what to do with them.

            It would cost more to tear them down, and then to rebuild something else in it’s place for what they said. And they, meaning the city council. If they were to build something else in their places, at least there would be construction jobs temporarily, but jobs none the less.

            Two of the major casinos in town here have added on and made them much bigger, and one of them has built a walkway between it and the convention center to cut down on pedestrian traffic. There’s another big money mistake, the convention center. They have enlarged as well, but only use one to two rooms for things, which I think is a big waste of money in itself.

  14. The war against Christianity is now out in the open.
    God is mad at mankind and sends angels o Earth to wipe out humanity.

    http://www.beyondhollywood.com/a-helping-of-angel-badassness-via-7-legion-clips/

    A Helping of Angel Badassness
    January 12, 2010

    Scott Stewart’s “Legion” doesn’t open until later this month (January 22, to be exact), but don’t let that stop you from enjoying these very nice clips from the movie that Screen Gems has released. If you like action, Paul Bettany, and Paul Bettany doing action, then “Legion” should be your cup of tea. Needless to say, given the premise (angels come to Earth to wipe out humanity), the film isn’t exactly going to sit too well with those who take their bible studies seriously.

  15. It does not take a PHD to reach the conclusion that these brains reached, any normal person that has to live within their means knew this.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100113/ts_alt_afp/useconomybudgetdeficit

    • Bama Dad:

      PHD= Piled Higher and Deeper.

      “While there is no magic number for this ratio, the committee judged that a ratio of 60 percent is an achievable target within a decade, and can be a useful guide to policymakers,” it said. “Any higher ratio would create an unacceptable risk of higher interest rates and financial crisis.”

      SO, THERE IS NO RATIONAL BASIS FOR THE NUMBER BUT WE MUST USE THIS NUMBER TO AVERT A CRISIS? FREAKIN BRILLIANT!!!!

      “It added that policymakers “should move aggressively to restrain growth of the debt beginning in 2012, as soon as the economic recovery strengthens.”

      AND OF COURSE WHAT HAPPENS IN 2012 WHEN THE FREAKIN ECONOMY HASN’T RECOVERED? FREAKIN BRILLIANT!!!

      CONCLUSION: THE FREAKIN LOONS ARE RUNNING THE ASYLUM AND THE LUNATICS WANT CONTROL!

      WE ARE SO SCREWED

      But aside from that, I hope yer havin a great day.
      JAC

  16. Firearm Sales Up as Murders Drop

    The FBI recently issued its preliminary 2009 crime report, showing that the number of murders in the first half of 2009 decreased 10 percent compared to the first half of 2008.

    If the trend holds for the remainder of 2009, it will be the single greatest one-year decrease in the number of murders since at least 1960, the earliest year for which national data are available through the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

    Also, the per capita murder rate for 2009 will be 51 percent lower than the all-time high recorded in 1991, and it will be the lowest rate since 1963—a 46-year low.

    Final figures for 2009 will be released by the FBI later this year.

    According to gun control supporter dogma—”more guns means more crime”—the number of privately owned firearms must have decreased 10 percent in 2009. To the contrary, however, the number rose between 1.5 and 2 percent, to an all-time high.

    For the better part of the last 15 months, firearms, ammunition, and “large” ammunition magazines have been sold in what appear to be record quantities. And, the firearms that were most commonly purchased in 2009 are those that gun control supporters most want to be banned—AR-15s, similar semi-automatic rifles, and handguns designed for defense.

    The National Shooting Sports Foundation already estimates record ammunition sales in 2009, dominated by .223 Remington, 7.62x39mm, 9mm and other calibers widely favored for defensive purposes.

    • Ya know what we got for Christmas from our best friends? The class to get our CCW’s right here at home! Soon as the weather breaks. Me? Armed and dangerous? LOL

    • LOI,
      You list two events (more guns and less crime) without showing any relationship between the two. Is there any data that shows that more guns = less crime?

      I would think the lower crime rate is caused by the Hope created by Obama’s election, not more guns.

      • That there is pure funny 😆

        Actually, at least around here, they are killing or trying to kill each other everyday. I won’t be PC, so I will say it’s the blacks on the blacks, which makes no sense to me, but I don’t judge, just try to stay our of the line of fire.

        The criminal element are simply killing each other off, yep thats it. The perfect explaination.

        That is funny!

        G!

        • G-Man,
          So more guns = less criminals = less crime. Sounds good to me!

          PS – I’m glad you got my joke – I was expecting to get slaughtered for that one!! 🙂

  17. I never heard about this potential dairy threat before. I found this on a survivalist blog:

    January 12th, 2010 / Author: usarmyguyretired
    The federal government is ignoring what very well may be the next “true” pandemic this country may face. The dairy industry is the carrier of the disease and the USDA and FDA are fully aware of the impending disaster but will take no action to prevent exposure to the population. The name of the disease is Johne’s (pronounced “Yo-nees”).
    What is this impending disease and why should this concern us? Johne’s (pronounced “Yo-nees”) disease is a chronic, contagious bacterial disease that affects the small intestine of ruminants such as cattle, sheep, goats, deer, antelope and bison. All ruminants are susceptible to Johne’s disease. (http://johnesdisease.org/) The disease is incurable and related to the human version of Crohn’s disease. The human version is similar in its form causing an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It can lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea and malnutrition. There is no known cause for either disease.
    How is the US Government complicit in the possible spread of this disease one may ask? The USDA and FDA are completely aware of the condition in the dairy industry. They are also aware of the relation between the bovine infestation and its ability to transmit to humans. The solution the government has chosen is not eradication of the infected herds but irradiation of milk products. The argument for irradiation is the premise that irradiating the milk will kill the infection. The infection lives in the fecal matter and irradiation does not remove the fecal matter from the milk. It is still present in every glass someone drinks from a production farm. If someone handed you a spoon of irradiated manure and told you it was safe to eat I doubt one would take a bite. Why do we accept this in our milk? The government accepts this level of contamination in milk and has no intention of intervening.
    Many will question how wide-spread the contamination is in the dairy industry and does this really need to be a concern. In the U.S. it is estimated that 7.8% of the beef herds and 22% of the dairy herds are infected with M. paratuberculosis. Infection rates in cattle in other countries are generally similar. (http://www.johnes.org/general/faqs.html#4) This is a low estimate by some accounts. The problem in the dairy industry is not simply how many cattle have the disease. Even if it one agrees the infection rate is only 22% the problem is greater than it appears. The milk from the infected 22% is mixed in the same container as the uninfected cattle. Outcome, 100% of the milk is infected at this stage and irradiation is the accepted remedy. My original question remains, care for a spoon of manure? The government tells us it is safe.
    The dairy industry continues to milk the infected dairy cattle and has no motivation to stop. Why? The government regulations do not prohibit them from using these cattle until they die from the disease. It is financially in their interest to keep these cattle than culling and replacing the herd. Remember, there is no cure. The only way to eliminate the disease from a herd is elimination of all infected cattle and equipment. The disease lives in the manure and any equipment is contacts becomes contaminated and a carrier.
    The element of our society who should be the impetus to stop this infection is absent. The press is not concerned because it does not fit in their agenda. They should be at the forefront of identifying this impending crisis and highlighting it to the populace. The problem is they no longer do investigative reporting. The press has become complacent and waits for the government to hand them “news” stories. No wonder they are failing, people do not trust them any longer and for good reason. If they attacked this story they would go up against large conglomerations, the federal government, including the senators and representatives who have interests in their districts to keep the current system in place.
    I am a free market advocate who believes in minimal government. The free market would correct itself because consumers would demand a change to operational procedure. The problem is the failure of the press to highlight the contamination of our milk supply. They will not do this while they are lapdogs of a burgeoning federal government. This is why the founders warned against such a strong central government. We are now bound to them as an agent to protect the food supply and they no longer care. They are more concerned with creating a larger, more centralized government in their zeal to control our lives.
    What can you do about this problem? The federal government will not help you. Stop buying milk from any supplier who does not certify their milk as contamination free. If you can raise a cow or goat, than do so to protect your family. Choose an alternative to dairy if possible, soy milk or some other product. The federal government will tell us there is no known connection between the dairy and human version. How much do you trust the government? Go on; take a bite of that spoon.

    • Birdman:

      Haven’t heard of this disease but have the perfect person to ask, so will get back to ya.

      I do know this however. The chances of fecal matter in your milk is much greater with a home grown cow than with thousands of commercial dairy cows.

      You ever seen a commercial dairy? The milk goes from teat into tube, attached to udder, down pipes and into stainless steel tanks, then from tanks to stainless stell trucks and then to more tanks where it is stored and then pasturized/homogenized or what ever.

      But I will check this out. We have enough things to panic about so if we can put one to bed it would be nice.

      Breath deeply my friend. I sense an increase in your tension level these past few weeks. Not time to blow a gaskget.

      Live free
      JAC

      • JAC:

        If you can check it out without too much effort that’s fine with me.

        I don’t think I’m any more tense now than in the past. If anything, unemployment is stressful. Had an interview today and one last week. Should hear something by the end of the month.

        I probably need to stay off the survival blogs but I find it very interesting. I think things are going to get worse and not better. I hope I’m wrong.

      • JAC, you are exactly right. Commercial dairy operations have not used stools, buckets, and hand milking for decades. Each teat is washed before attaching the milking machine. Hands never touch the milk. It goes straight from the cow to a chilled holding tank where it is then pumped into a truck and transported to the dairy. The one area I disagree with is “pasturing” the cows on some of these mega farms. If one drives down I5 in the Tracy, CA area, you will see large dairy herds on relatively small feed lots. In the winter and spring, these lots are freqently muddy with the cows standing in several inches of mud and waste. I have even seen them climb up on the manure piles to avoid the slop. This has to lead to hoof problems and other diseases.

        WRT (with respect to) radiation, Europe has sold irradiated milk for over 30 years. You find it in the tetrahedral drink packs. It has a self life of 6 months. D13, you should be familiar with irradiated MREs as these came out of Fort Devens in MA. Irradiation is safe and should kill all bacteria in the milk. It will not remove toxins if they exist.

        • TRay

          Ya ever milked a cow?

          And your dead on regarding the muddy lots. Same for feeder cattle.

          It’s mind boggling how big some of these dairy operations are anymore.

          My grandpa and uncle would be embarrassed to admit they was in the business. No they wouldn’t, they would just bitch about those Big Time Operators.

          You guys gettin any warm rains yet? Looked like big Pacific flow coming the other day.

          JAC

          • I was too young when we farmed and had the family cow, so no I never milked one myself. After that my dad was a carpenter and trained his three sons in the business. Actually taught us the benefits of a college education and provided the means to earn it. We build and repaired a lot of farm buildings in N. IL. So I was in many a milking parlor in the ’50s & ’60s. Both my grandfathers ran dairy herds. I can remember my grandmother pour milk into the cream separator.

            When I was young, nearly every farm had livestock of some sort. We had a cow and calf, pigs, sheep, 1500 chickens and ducks on 80 acres. By the time I graduated from high school most farms were grain only and livestock was being concentrated into big lots. Hogs were in confined hog house the stunk of ammonia so bad it made your eyes water.

            The warm rains moved through in the last 36 hours and should be at Judy’s by now. Colder rain coming. Lots of snow on the summit. Hope for more so we can shut up the drought talk and give the farmers all the water they need this summer.

            • TRAy

              Except for the heat and humidy of N. Il sounds like a good life growin up.

              If you think hog houses are bad, try one of those big chicken house/egg farms.

              Had a job takin care of the neighbors once while they were away for two weeks. Couldn’t look at a chicken for months after without gagging.

              I too hope your drought situation mellows. Sounds like Reno/Carson area is having a winter like I remember when very young.

              • We had 1500 baby chicks one year. Housed them in the chicken house, barn and hog house. This was before the big automated hen houses. Half turned out to be non-layers naturally and they went to the field. My brother and I collect 500 eggs each night after school. Then carried grain to them. Mom cleaned, candled and crated the eggs. Dad sold them at mom & pop stores.

                When the roosters got old enough, we sold dressed chickens. One Sunday morn we were dressed for church when a good customer drove in and said she had surprise company and needed 4 chickens right away. Dad called for his .22 and she started to complain about them being all shot up. I being a young smart ass (not much has changed (the young part)) said Daddy doesn’t shoot them up, he shoots them through the eye. This she had to see. So out to the field they go. 4 shots 4 eyes. Mom dressed the chickesn and we made it to church. That afternoon, 6 cars pulled into the yard. All wanted chickens, all had to be shot. Dad was good that day, 1 shell per chicken. The money was good too.

                I remember cleaning out the chicken houses. Not fun.

    • Hi Birdman,

      I’ll treat this like any other scare. They are too many list, but if this were an actual problem, we’d all be dead from it by now……same as from swine flu, bird flu, SARS, etc….

    • Birdman, et al.

      Here is the definitive answer on this disease, for a second year veterinarian student who spent all last summer working in a commercial dairy.

      Glad to hear you are doing well. So my brilliant girl has a very simple and completely satisfactory answer. Johne’s is not zoonotic (sp?) – it isn’t contracted by humans and humans don’t develop Chrone’s or IBD by ingesting Johne’s. XXXXXXX and her dad both have mild IBD, and there is some evidence that condition is genetic. In fact, while eating the manure (literally with a spoon) from a cow infected with Johne’s would not adversely affect a human any more than uninfected manure – it would make you ill but not because of the Johne’s.

      Logic check: if the disease was zoonotic then Chrone’s and IBD should disproportionately affect veterinarians and dairy workers yet there is no evidence of such a trend. Ingesting cow manure (and there may be trace amounts in the milk because there is manure on the udder — and I have watched them do this, they actually power wash the udder before applying the automated milking machine) can give a human salmonella or ecoli BUT both of those are eliminated by irradiation!

      AND BECAUSE I KNOW SOMEONE WILL ASK,

      From Wiki: A zoonosis (pronounced /ˌzoʊ.əˈnoʊsɨs/) or zoonose[1] is any infectious disease that can be transmitted (in some instances, by a vector) from non-human animals, both wild and domestic, to humans or from humans to non-human animals (the latter is sometimes called reverse zoonosis). Many serious diseases fall under this category.

      The simplest definition of a zoonosis is a disease that can be transmitted from other vertebrate animals to humans. A slightly more technical definition is a disease that normally infects other animals, but can also infect humans. The reverse situation (transmission from human to animal) is known as anthroponosis.

      So there you have it. Now I will ask you all the same question I asked my source.
      Who are these people and why are they trying to scare up a scare?

      Wondering if this is more stuff like the BS gun laws and such that keep popping up.

      Anyhow, yall can sleep tight and drink all the moo juice you choose.
      The fat will kill ya long before this other thing.
      LOL

      Pleasant dreams.
      JAC

  18. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    http://www.nationalaffairs.com/publications/detail/the-myth-of-campaign-finance-reform

    A really good article about the evils of “campaign finance reform” and how it is essentially contradictory to both freedom and a Republic.

    Not a perfect analysis, but pretty darn good in my opinion.

  19. Common Man says:

    All;

    I do miss the time I can spend here, but work is keeping me away from the blog.

    I am interested in everyone’s oppinion on the following:

    Detroit, MI: The teachers of Detroit Public Schools are facing an interesting delema proposed by the School Board. Since the Public Education System is broke, and has been for several years, the School Board proposed that each teacher pay $250.00 from each pay check for the next 40 months in order to ensure the School Board does not layoff any teachers. Each teacher would recieve the $10K back (without interest) when they either retired or resigned. The School Board calls it a loan.

    If the Teachers Union does not agree to this “proposal” then the School Board will proceed with layoffs to a level they can afford.

    Despite what we might think about Unions, Public Education and other related organizations I have concluded that this is nothing more than extortion on the part of the Detroit Public School Board. What does anyone else think?

    BTW: The teachers Union is suing the School Board accordingly

    CM

    • I don’t know.. I mean, given just what you said, they are broke. Given that, what choices do they have? Secure loans or cut back on expenses. Ergo give me money or I’ll have to start firing people. I assume they’ve tried other avenues of revenue generation and cost cutting.

      On a related note, what the hell is wrong with the Texas School Board? They claim that minorities are over-represented in history textbooks, so they’re cutting them out, starting with Cesar Chavez. This would be the Chavez who “lacks the stature[…] and contributions” and should not “be held up to our children as someone worthy of emulation.” You know, as opposed to the Cesar Chavez whose birthday is a holiday in eight states and who is sometimes referred to as the Latino equivalent of MLK.*

      *I think this might be an exaggeration, but he was still pretty significant.

      • Common Man says:

        Matt:

        Yes they are broke and in deep sh*t. As of March of this year they will be $21.6 million short on payroll, and the slide continues throughout the remaining year.

        Why they are broke is another discussion, my point is the School Board is using extortion as means to lower payroll since wages are determined by Union contract.

        They teachers cannot strike, as our lame-duck governor would force them back to work.

        Regardless of the reasons for this delema (and Detroit has a history of severe corruption) I think it is still extortion. I was just interested to see if others felt the same way

        CM

        • v. Holland says:

          It’s not that I wouldn’t call it extortion, I just have to say that it seems to me that Unions use extortion, too.

        • Yep. Detroit govt is in line right behind Chicago in the corruption line. School Board, Water Dept, Mayor’s office. Hint Kwame Kilpatrick,ex mayor forced right into prison recently. Great credit to Dave Bing, retired from NBA, for trying to pull Detroit out of hell

    • Hey CM. I had the misfortune to have quite a few Detroit Public school teachers as patients at a dentist office where I worked. To be honest, I don’t understand how they can teach. They were/are ignorant, not well educated themselves and had pretty high opinions of themselves as well. I think that if it were me, I would rather loan the money than be out of a cushy job with all the bennies. Just my opinion tho.

      • Common Man says:

        Detroit Public Schools need payday loans

        Payday loans of a sort from the State of Michigan have been infused into the sagging Detroit Public Schools district.

        Chastity Pratt Dawsey of the Detroit Free Press reports that Detroit Public Schools is going to have trouble making payroll. A lot of trouble. In fact, on March 17, they’ll be $21.6 million short of making payroll. On April 14, it will be $16.1 million; $17.4 million on May 12; and $21.3 on June 9. Not only that, but the school district has at least $42 million in overdue bills and $9.2 million in retirement payments to distribute. Be thankful if you aren’t one of the 13,633 employees of Detroit Public Schools.

        Also, be thankful you aren’t Robert C. Bobb, who is slated to take control of Detroit Public Schools’ budget on March 2.

        Options?
        Dawsey touches upon a number of suggestions for how the district could approach this tremendous emergency cash situation:

        •Borrow from a bank against future state aid payments
        •Arrange to participate in a state borrowing pool
        •Ask the state for an advance on state aid
        •Work out a new payment schedule with unions
        Unfortunately, none of these ideas are considered to be feasible solutions

        And to add to these issues real unemployment in Detroit is at 50%, and we have the highest level of poverty in the country with 32% of the residents earning less than poverty level.

        Couple that with past corrupt Mayors, Superintendents making in excess of $170K annually, a 45% reduction in student population, and a city in such dispare it rivals Baghdad.

        The city is a prime example of what others will eventually look like should the current regime continue it’s power and influence.

        Chicago may have a history of being one of the most corrupt cities in America, but only because nobody pays any attention to Detroit; which is far worse, and has been ever since it ellected Colmen Young.

        As long as the remaining residents are afforded the opportunity to live on state and federal aid the city will continue to crumble.

        Personally I would let it go just like they should have let GM and Chrysler go.

    • The school district could have said that they will reduce wages without paying the employees back. Is it extortion for a manufacturing company to reduce employees hours in tough finacial times instead of laying employees off, resulting in a smaller pay check, I dont believe it is.

      I realize that most teachers are payed by salary and asking a person to work the same amount for less is not fair, but niether is asking a person to work overtime for the same amount, yet it happens all the time in salaried positions. That is the risk with being in a salaried position contract or not. The teachers should be thankful they have a job, and that they are not risking being one of the few fired.

      As for the Union sueing the school board, what will that accomplish except wasting the little money the school board has available, that should be going to pay teachers.

      The only thing that makes this sound like extortion instead of business like normal in any other company is the school board offered to pay the teachers back.

      • I do not know why the school district is in debt most likely its becuase of high umemployment like the rest of the country. As for corruption I dont know if it exsists or not but each teacher is responsible who they work for just like the rest of the country. If there is a problem within the school district that a person disagrees with then they need to seek employment else where.

        • Seed,

          Hope today finds you well!

          The answer as to why any innercity school system has financial problems is very simple, most large cities, and many more smaller ones that have a high concentration of people on welfare will always have this problem. Welfare Rats don’t pay taxes, but mate like their rich and all those kids have to go to school. The only people paying taxes are the working class, and welfare is exhausting the system by using more tax dollars than are put into the coffers.

          Peace and Live Free!

          G!

          • Hey G-man,

            You’re right but in Detroit they hired a fancy ass Superintendant from out west to rescue the failing school district. The first thing he did was remodel his office to the tune of $5 mil while the kids couldnt get a roll of TP in the john. Stuff like that has been going on for years

            • We have similar problems here. People in power abuse it even at the lowest levels. I ordered a 3 hole punch for a new manager last November, It was an electric one and cost $70 😆

              Isn’t that something?

              G!

      • The state employees in CA sued the gubernator about 3 day per month furloughs and won. We may even have to pay back wages. So now they fear layoffs. The gubernator has suggested a 5% paycut with a 5% contribution from the employees to the pension fund. They are SCREAMING. It may be better and more humane just to fire them off.
        This summer and fall, I was working a 4 day week while our production crew worked a 3 day week. This was after 2 significant layoffs. We are now back on full time but with the reduced force. Why should government entities be any diffferent?

        One of my pet peeves is one government agency suing another. We pay good money for them to solve the problems. There is no need to pay lawyers a fortune to solve the problem. If I were in charge, I would fire the first government administrator who files a suite.

        • T Ray

          Govt sueing govt AND Govt Unions should all be considered immoral.

          They have US captive in both cases. WE can’t defend ourselves.

          Good to see ya firin on all cylinders tonight.

          Best to you and yours
          JAC

    • Let’s see – the school district is broke, and they want a no-interest loan from the teachers…and the teachers are actually considering this?

      Exactly where is the money going to come from to pay back these no-interest loans??

      This is just delaying the inevitable – layoffs or tax increases – and making the teachers pay for it, and fooling the public into thinking the budget problem is solved…

      If they can’t raise the revenue now, what would make anyone think they’ll be able to raise double the revenue in the future – to pay back these loans and the school costs at that time?

      Run…as fast as you can…

  20. Judy Sabatini says:

    I hope this works.

    When the screen fills up with words, then the words tumble to the bottom and new words start up again at the top of the screen.

    http://www.greatdanepro.com/Pray%20For%20America/index.htm

  21. Canine Weapon says:

    Q. Why are there no statist liberals in Star Trek?

    A. Because Star Trek takes place in the future!

    • Canine Weapon

      Sorry pooch, you simply aren’t looking close enough.

      1. How does the federation, an obvious govt entity, afford all those star ships just to “explore space and keep the peace”?

      Thats just the first question.

      Give up young pup, for JAC is one with the CATS.

      • Canine Weapon says:

        The original version of this joke was a little more offensive than I would have liked for my post, so I just modified it. Sorry it didn’t work out for you. Replace ‘statist liberals’ with ‘Muslims’.

      • The premise of Star Trek was the greatest invention of mankind – which was not warp drive but the replicator.

        With access to unlimited energy (which also powers the warp drives), the Star Trek universe creates anything out of anything for free.

        It was hypothesized that since everyone could get what ever they wanted for free, there would be no need of money. Everyone would start doing what they really wanted to do, and the best of humanity would appear.

        • BF:

          That would have been point number 2.

          But I was giving the puppy a chance to digest the first bone.

          He is a puppy still isn’t he?

        • Canine Weapon says:

          What about demand for services? Even with unlimited energy to produce unlimited goods, someone needs to clean toilets, and who is going to do that unless they have to to make a living? Everyone might want to do what’s best for humanity (the greater good??), but nobody’s going to volunteer for that. Watch Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe – every one of those occupations would be left vacant.

          Plus, if everyone is a volunteer, they can quit whenever they like without penalty, so I imagine menial workers would be highly unreliable.

  22. Judy Sabatini says:
  23. Buck!

    Ho goes it today? Ok here. As I said I would post what HR 3200 would mean where I work. In the initial point paper, abortion and Illegal Immagrants were not discussed, bu further research of the bill, it states tha Federal funds cannot be used to insure illegal immigrants (it does not say that the states can’t under the new law). Abortion isn’t mentioned that I could find, my only thought is the many “No Discrimination) clauses could account for this. Here’s the rest:

    Healthcare Reform : What you might want to know

    One of the first heathcare reform proposals coming out of Washington D.C. is HR 3200, America’s Health Choices Act of 2009. It’s not only lengthy, but contains some provisions that may change our future healthcare benefits here.

    Here’s what you need to know if this legislation passes and is signed into law. The provisions quoted are attached:

    Sec 102- Limitation on New Enrollment: In general, an individual insurance issuer cannot enroll anyone if the effective date is after the first day of Y1 (Y1 is when the government program takes effect). Opinion: We enroll annually in our program, seems that will come to an end and we will be forced into another program.

    Cost Sharing (Out of Pocket $)- $5000.00 For individual, $10000.00 for family, annually. will increase to the nearest $100.00 each year by the percentage of the increase in the consumer price index.

    Program is designed to cover 70% of the actual cost, the reason for cost sharing.
    (are you crapping your pants yet?)

    SEC 243- Affordable Premium- Annual premium is 1/12 of the families annual income. Percentage of premium paid by you is also determined by income ( if you make 22,0000 a year, your premium payment will be 3% of your annual premium)

    Sec 312- Employer Contribution- Our Employer will must pay 72.5% (individual) or 65% (family) of the annual premium for full time employees,

    Sec 59B- Tax on Individuals without acceptable health care coverage- You will be assessed a 2.5% tax on your annual income for not being insured.

    Sec 4376- Self Insured Health Plans – Each year, a fee will be imposed to the employer maintaining a self insured health plan ( that’s still us) equal to the fair share per capita amount (?) multiplied by the number of lives covered under the plan.
    Between this section and section 312, it may be more cost effective for the health center to use the health insurance exchange and stop the self insured system we now have.

    In addition, if the Health Center does not provide coverage, they only have to pay 8% of the total amount of employee wages (annual). How much $ is this?

    I wrot the latter as it pertains to where I work, and I found none of it good at all.

    Peace and Live Free! 🙂

    G!

    • Buck The Wala says:

      Thanks for compiling that G!

      Now if I could just find the time to sit and go through all this stuff…Definitely way too convoluted. Need to find my trusty calculator.

      How’re things going by you?

      • I’m doing good today, the sun came out for a change, still cold though.

        Both bills are very complicated and long. I did a cost valuation of the bills figures and my current costs, and my annual cost for healthcare, based on premium and out of pocket average for the last 3 years. The government version almost triples my costs, mainly through out of pocket costs. Nope, don’t want it at all. They are not telling us the truth! 👿

        G!

  24. USW

    Is there anything we can do to make that snapon.com thing go away?

    • How about banning people who keep using that as cover????? 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • I will look into it. I don’t know what causes it in the first place. I have never had it happen to me. I will investigate it though.

      USW

      • USW:

        This is how it happens.

        I type reply. Check to make sure my name is shown. Hit reply.

        Its posted with the new name Search the Web on Snap.com

        Then it actually replace my name in the Name required box. I have to delete it and reset with Just A Citizen.

        I saw it happened to a couple of others a few months ago but it seems to be back.

        Don’t know if any of that helps.

        I know your probably up typing away right now so hope you are well.
        Get some sleep one of these days would ya.
        JAC

  25. Peak oil.

    The U. S. Geological Service issued a report in April (’08) that only scientists and oil men knew was coming, but man was it big. It was a revised report ( hadn’t been updated since ’95) on how much oil was in this area of the western 2/3 of North Dakota ; western South Dakota ; and extreme eastern Montana ….. check THIS out:

    The Bakken is the largest domestic oil discovery since Alaska ‘s Prudhoe Bay , and has the potential to eliminate all American dependence on foreign oil. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates it at 503 billion barrels.. Even if just 10% of the oil is recoverable… at $107 a barrel, we’re looking at a resource base worth more than $5.3 trillion.

    ‘When I first briefed legislators on this, you could practically see their jaws hit the floor. They had no idea.’ says Terry Johnson, the Montana Legislature’s financial analyst.

    ‘This sizable find is now the highest-producing onshore oil field found in the past 56 years.’ reports, The Pittsburgh Post Gazette. It’s a formation known as the Williston Basin , but is more commonly referred to as the ‘Bakken.’ And it stretches from Northern Montana, through North Dakota and into Canada . For years, U S. oil exploration has been considered a dead end. Even the ‘Big Oil’ companies gave up searching for major oil wells decades ago. However, a recent technological breakthrough has opened up the Bakken’s massive reserves…. and we now have access of up to 500 billion barrels. And because this is light, sweet oil, those billions of barrels will cost Americans just $16 PER BARREL!

    That’s enough crude to fully fuel the American economy for2041 years straight.

    2. And if THAT didn’t throw you on the floor, then this next one should – because it’s from TWO YEARS AGO!

    U. S. Oil Discovery- Largest Reserve in the World!
    Stansberry Report Online – 4/20/2006

    Hidden 1,000 feet beneath the surface of the Rocky Mountains lies the largest untapped oil reserve in the world. It is more than 2 TRILLION barrels. On August 8, 2005 President Bush mandated its extraction. In three and a half years of high oil prices none has been extracted. With this motherload of oil why are we still fighting over off-shore drilling?

    They reported this stunning news: We have more oil inside our borders, than all the other proven reserves on earth. Here are the official estimates:

    – 8-times as much oil as Saudi Arabia
    – 18-times as much oil as Iraq
    – 21-times as much oil as Kuwait
    – 22-times as much oil as Iran
    – 500-times as much oil as Yemen
    – and it’s all right here in the Western United States .

    HOW can this BE? HOW can we NOT BE extracting this? Because the environmentalists and others have blocked all efforts to help America become independent of foreign oil! Again, we are letting a small group of people dictate our lives and our economy…..WHY?

    James Bartis, lead researcher with the study says we’ve got more oil in this very compact area than the entir e Middle East -more than 2 TRILLION barrels untapped. That’s more than all the proven oil reserves of crude oil in the world today, reports The Denver Post.

    Don’t think ‘OPEC’ will drop its price – even with this find? Think again! It’s all about the competitive marketplace, – it has to. Think OPEC just might be funding the environmentalists?
    Got your attention/ire up yet? Hope so! Now, while you’re thinking about it …. and hopefully P.O’d, do this:

    3. Pass this along. If you don’t take a little time to do this, then you should stifle yourself the next time you want to complain about gas prices .. because by doing NOTHING, you’ve forfeited your right to complain.
    ——–
    Now I just wonder what would happen in this country if every one of you sent this to every one in your address book.
    By the way…this is all true. Check it out at the link below!!!
    GOOGLE it or follow this link. It will blow your mind.
    http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1911

    • LOI,
      I’ve seen this several times. I don’t have the facts in front of me, but first of all the title of the link is “3 to 4.3 Billion Barrels of Technically Recoverable Oil…”

      I believe the oil in the Dakota’s and Montana is very hard to extract, or something like that. But the extraction process has started with some test wells in 2007.

      The “oil” in Colorado is shale oil. Very expensive and it requires strip mining or mountain top removal to get to it. None of this is comparable to middle-east oil, and none of it is “light, sweet oil”…

      • Agree, posted it because it was easy and a few days ago it was mentioned that we were at peak oil, which is not true, at least regarding reserves. Active wells may be at peak.

        • I read this about a year ago. There is some controversy as there was a noted prof that mapped the field and predicted that the size was substantially larger than the USGS was stating. Unfortunately the prof died. The oil is about 10,000 ft in horizontal shale layers and can be tapped with the new horizontal drilling techniques. While the extraction costs may not compete with the MEs $10/bbl, we only need to compete with their asking price not their production price. The oil cartel supports the price by production quotas. By producing our own oil we not only can reduce our dependence on ME oil, we can also impact the global price and possibly bring that price down. Even a few dollars is big money considering the volumes involved. Either scenerio is a win for us. Our real impediment is political not financial or technical. The governor of one of Dakotas campaigned on no drilling. The CA legislature has blocked drill off the S. CAL coast even though it would relieve the ocean seepage and natural tar balls washing on the beaches. Not to mention we need the $ in CA. When you are in financial trouble (and we are) it is smart to sell a few assets. He have lots of oil but lack the political will to extract it.

          I know BF will disagree with me as we had this discussion a few months ago. Profits made here helps our economy far more than sending our dollars to the ME. It would be a different story if one our multinationals owned the wells in the ME. But they do not. So we will continue to follow the liberal save the owl, the caribou, and the perma frost pipe dream in search of the nirvana of cheap carbonless energy until we are dead broke.

  26. ON A PRESSING MATTER OF STATE

    President Vladimir Putin called President Bush with an emergency:
    “Our largest condom factory has exploded!” the Russian President cried; “My people’s favourite form of birth control! This is a true disaster!”

    “Boris, the American people would be happy to do anything within their power to help you.”, replied the President.

    “I do need your help,” said Putin. “Could you possibly send 1,000,000 condoms ASAP to tie us over?”

    “Why certainly! I’ll get right on it!”, said Bush.

    “Oh, and one more small favour, please?”, said Putin.

    “Yes?”, replied the President.

    “Could the condoms be red in colour and at least 10″ long and 4″ in diameter?” said Yeltsin.

    “No problem,” replied the President and with that Bush hung up and called the President of Trojan condoms. “I need a favour, you’ve got to make 1,000,000 condoms right away and send them to Russia.”

    “Consider it done,” said the President of Trojan.

    “Great! Now listen, they have to be red in colour, 10″ long and 4″ wide.”

    “Easily done. Anything else?”

    “Yeah,” said the President, “Print ‘MADE IN AMERICA, SIZE MEDIUM’ on each one.”

    • INTELLIGENT CAR RADIO

      A lady bought a new $100,000 Mercedes and proudly drove it off the showroom floor to take home. Halfway home, she attempted to change radio stations and saw that there appeared to be only one station. She immediately turned around and headed back to the dealer.

      Once at the dealer, she found her salesman and began to excitedly explain that her radio was not working, and they must replace it since she only had one radio station. The salesman calmed her down and told her that her car radio was voice-activated, and that she would only need to state aloud the type of music that she wanted and the car would find it.

      She got into the car and started the engine and then said the word “country,” and the radio changed to a station playing a George Strait song. She was satisfied and started home. After a while she decided to try out the radio and said “rock ‘n’ roll;” the radio station changed and a song by the Rolling Stones came from the speakers. Quite pleased, the woman continued driving.

      A few blocks from her house, another driver ran a light causing her to slam on her brakes to avoid a collision. The woman angrily exclaimed, “Asshole!”

      …The radio cut over to George Bush’s press conference.

    • POLITICS ON THE FARM

      Two farmers were discussing politics and the first one says: “I believe in a share and share alike policy. One where we are all equal.”

      “Well” replied the other farmer “I’m not sure about that. What you mean is that if you have two horses you’d give me one?”

      “Of course” says the first.

      The second farmer continued: “and of you had two cars, you’d give me one of them too?”

      “absolutely”

      “So” says the second farmer, “if you had two pigs then you’d give me one of them?”

      “ah, now hang on a minute” says the first, “you know I’ve got two pigs!”

    • ‘Ahem’ how did we go from Putin to Yeltsin? *ducks and runs for cover*

  27. Have been watching some of the reports coming out of Haiti today – how devasting for that island. Sent in a donation to the RedCross for their efforts there.

  28. This is a very interesting article on what can happen if we see a major collapse in the United States. It is a scary article but I suggest you read it. I know G-Man is well prepared but most of us are not. I hope it never comes to this.

    http://www.survivalblog.com/2010/01/coa_analysis_of_common_surviva.html

    • Very scary Birdman.. I know BF and his family are ready. I sure hope I am. No neighbors, got a farm, a pond, grow my own produce. Eating bambi most of the year too. Just worried about my doggies. No Iams will tick them off big time! And what about my ciggies and Scotch? *sigh*

      • Willo:

        It sounds like you are well prepared. I’ve got a long way to go but I’ll get there. I try to do a little each week.

        Cigarettes are very expensive. I think they are now $7 a pack thanks to SCHIP. Maybe you can grow your own tobacco in in the right climate. Stock up on Scotch. You know you’ll drink it.

      • Willo!

        I’m going to be making homemade tomato brandy this year to stock some shelves with. My Uncle makes it, and it’s good. It sure called the nerves over in the Middle East, he sent it to me in 7up 2 liter bottles. I’ll try get the recipe and post it sometime.

        G!

    • Good find Birdman!

      I think you’ll see in a couple days that things could be far worse than even the author could imagine (Guest Article I think). I don’t like his strategy as far as his plan, I think he waits far too long. My goal is to be long gone just before everything breaks down. I have all the arrangements made, even if nothing happens (false alarm) my job is protected for 3 months.

      As far as wilderness living, already have my temporary deeps woods area picked out, with supplies ready to be packed in this summer. I’ll have a shelter in place, which will appear to be a hunting blind, but able to transform it into a weather proof camp within minutes. I’m building as many as ten of these things, they are portable and easy to assemble. Using PVC pipe from work that is not ever going to be used.

      By next fall, I should have up to five locations, deep in the woods set up with these “blinds”, strategically placed as to allow movement and a quick sniper setup in the event of problems. Each location, outside off my main one, will have several days of food in airtight storage hidden underground. I think I’ll be ok within the 10 sq miles of wilderness I will be in, if it comes to that.

      What fun it is to think of these things!:roll:

      Hope you are having a great day! 🙂

      G!

      • G-Man:

        I would be interested in seeing any plans you have for these PVC blinds. Have USW send you my e-mail and you can send me pictures or a diagram.

        Do you own the land where you are setting up your blinds and storage?

        • The land that I hunt is owned by a lumber company in Oregon. It is managed by the game commission for public hunting. However, access is difficult if you don’t own the land around it. With dirt roads, five miles from the other, you must cross 1/2 mile of private property to gain access. There’s been many a hunter lost in there, only to find themselves at our front door 10-15 miles from their truck.

          Yes USW can send your address, or he can send you mine, I have no problem with that. Working with PVC is easy. it can be assembled and unassembled in short time, by using sheet metal screws instead of glue. A roll of black visquene (plastic) is cheap. Only thing I need is a few rolls of burlap for camoflauge. That’s for spring.

          G!

      • GMan

        Hell, save the time and effort. Just plan on comin out here and hangin with us redknecks.

        Got plenty of room and I’ll leave the porch light on.

        peace and freedom my friend
        JAC

        • JAC:

          What about the rest of us?

          • Birdman:

            You too. And any other freedom loving soal.

            In fact,I could use about 200,000 of ya real soon.

            • JAC:

              200,000 for what? Are you pursuing The Free State Project methodology where they want people to relocate so they can legally take over the state legislature and declare secession?

              Are you building an army?

              If housing is cheap I would consider a move. MI is going to collapse.

    • It is fiction but One Second After by William Forstchen is a very good book to read if you want a realistic scenario of life after the collapse of society.

    • Hey Birdman,

      I know someone here who looks at that blog. He sent me the article today! His comment is he’s glad to be here on this island. Everyone knows that there’s a three months supply of food, EXCEPT THAT TODAY, the food inspector told me there’s a move to go to ‘just in time stock’ of two weeks!!!! You know where we are. Unfreakinbelievable. I better get serious about scoring a handline to use with the sailboat, cuz there’s gonna be a couple thousand folks living on fish and coconuts……

  29. Hi Black Flag, and anyone else with a suspicious mind,

    I was looking around the Global Research site and found an article about Global currency. When I read the following paragraph, I couldn’t help but think that the 550 Billion that disappeared from the markets just before the election might have something to do with these people…..

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=13239

    ….However, it was not in the game plan that U.S. banks should escape the BIS net. When they managed to sidestep the first Basel Accord, a second set of rules was imposed known as Basel II. The new rules were established in 2004, but they were not levied on U.S. banks until November 2007, the month after the Dow passed 14,000 to reach its all-time high. It has been all downhill from there. Basel II had the same effect on U.S. banks that Basel I had on Japanese banks: they have been struggling ever since to survive.8

    Basel II requires banks to adjust the value of their marketable securities to the “market price” of the security, a rule called “mark to market.”9 The rule has theoretical merit, but the problem is timing: it was imposed ex post facto, after the banks already had the hard-to-market assets on their books. Lenders that had been considered sufficiently well capitalized to make new loans suddenly found they were insolvent. At least, they would have been insolvent if they had tried to sell their assets, an assumption required by the new rule. Financial analyst John Berlau complained:

    “The crisis is often called a ‘market failure,’ and the term ‘mark-to-market’ seems to reinforce that. But the mark-to-market rules are profoundly anti-market and hinder the free-market function of price discovery. . . . In this case, the accounting rules fail to allow the market players to hold on to an asset if they don’t like what the market is currently fetching, an important market action that affects price discovery in areas from agriculture to antiques.”10

    Imposing the mark-to-market rule on U.S. banks caused an instant credit freeze, which proceeded to take down the economies not only of the U.S. but of countries worldwide. In early April 2009, the mark-to-market rule was finally softened by the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB); but critics said the modification did not go far enough, and it was done in response to pressure from politicians and bankers, not out of any fundamental change of heart or policies by the BIS.

    And that is where the conspiracy theorists come in. Why did the BIS not retract or at least modify Basel II after seeing the devastation it had caused? Why did it sit idly by as the global economy came crashing down? Was the goal to create so much economic havoc that the world would rush with relief into the waiting arms of the BIS with its privately-created global currency? The plot thickens . .

    • Cyndi P;

      I don’t know about the 500 billion but now you know who really runs the FED.

      My daughter flew by you today I think, on her way to Japan.

      Best wishes
      JAC

      • Did she fly commercial or military?? Today we had a rumor that Hillary Clinton’s aircraft would be stopping for fuel. I don’t know if it did or not, probably not because I mostly likely would have heard by now if it had. Rumors travel pretty quick in a place like this 😉

        • While her Papa thinks she’s the most important woman on the planet, I don’t think she ranked a military flight.

          She went commercial along with her other 50 members of her performing dance troupe. They will spend the next three months conducting dance/singing workshops across Japan.

          Remember, I’m a western boy. So the term nearby is relative. Wyoming is near by to West Montana or northern Idaho. Even if it take 6 hours to get there.

          • Ah…gotcha. She probably came within a couple of thousand miles then!

            🙂

          • Hey JAC….it is interesting to note how we determine distance….Montana and the Dakotas and Texas…we measure not in miles but in hours.

            Have a great friend from Connecticut….comes down to stay with me in Fort Worth…gets up one morning, grabs his swim suit, and promptly lets me know he is going for a short trip to South Padre Island. I just kind of looked at him and said…take your over night bag…you are 8 to 9 hours away from that part of the coast….and that is if you don’t stop and don’t fall under 60 MPH AVERAGE. This is Texas, my friend you cannot drive across it in one day and it certainly is not a one hour trip to the coast…unless you are in warp speed.

            I love the big country up there. Clean air.

  30. JAC and BF….

    I would like to draw up some hypothetical situations for your input but a question or two first.

    One….as precise as possible, without an encyclopedia disertation, please give me your definition of trade, trade deficits, trade surplus, and sanctions.

    Two…. Embassies….good or bad?

    • Oh, and on the embassies….take out the CIA and clandestine organizations and assume they do not exist at the Embassy level.

    • D13:

      Trade= exchange of goods and services between two people. Could be organizations, such as a company.

      Trade deficit = Value of goods imported exceeds value of goods exported.

      Trade surplus = Value of goods imported is less than value of goods exported.

      Point of order here: The realationship of money flow is opposite the goods. Goods exported means money comes in.

      Sanctions = Govt interference with trade. Might add to accomplish political objectives but not necessary.

      Embassies = Good (And I might add, sovereign territory).

      • Trade= exchange of goods and services between two people. Could be organizations, such as a company.

        Trade deficit = Value of goods imported exceeds value of goods exported. (or, traded your money for their goods).

        Trade surplus = Value of goods imported is less than value of goods exported. (traded your goods for their money).

        Point of order here: The realationship of money flow is opposite the goods. Goods exported means money comes in.

        …………

        Few things are more confusing to people than trade surplus/deficits.

        Simplest way to understand it, is to personalize it.

        You go to Walmart, you trade your dollars for a teddy bear. This, if you were a country, is a trade deficit. You do not ‘barter’ with Walmart, except for money.

        You got to work, you trade your skill for money. This, if you were a country, is a trade surplus.You do not ‘barter’ with your company, except for money.

        If the US has a trade deficit with China, it simply means the US used its money to buy real goods from China.

        This can continue – such like you buying things from Walmart – as long as you have money. When you have no more money, this stops.

        For nearly every nation (and absolutely every person) on earth, they will eventually run out of money – but not the USA.

        As the reserve currency, every one wants (or did) the US$. In essence, the US could print money and buy goods indefinitely.

        A trade deficit for the US is not a bad thing – as the US is the manufacturer of money and as long as the rest of the world accepts it.

        A trade surplus with the US is a bad thing for most countries – when the US$ is no longer worth toilet paper.

        So when pundits fret about deficit trade, one needs understand what the fretting is about. Most of the time, these pundits are clueless.

        ………….

        So, JAC seems to have covered all the questions very well (as usual)

        • I was going to say, that those definitions only work if you don’t consider money a good (in which case the surplus/deficit reduces to migration of people), but that would just muddy the waters and you did a better job explaining it anyway.

          • I believe I did describe money as a good – which, again makes trade deficit/surplus rather a strange measure in that context.

            What it is trying to measure (but doesn’t) is how much debt is used to buy things.

            Back to Walmart, when you run out of cash money, you can pull your credit card and keep ‘trading’ money for goods.

            The trade deficit/surplus is an attempt to measure how much is on the national credit card – but it really doesn’t measure that at all.

            The real theory of this measure is from a Keynesian view of consumer-centric economics. That is, demand-side.

            It Austrian economics, it really isn’t a measure of anything other than the aggregate amount of trade.

  31. @ JAC and BF….ok…I got what I expected… a text book definition of trade, surplus/deficit….and not different from how I would have answered.

    Now….

    Your definition of “Free Trade”, please….and

    would you agree that the value of anything to trade is relative only to the parties involved?

    For example, BF used Walmart. Ok…let us use Walmart. I go to Walmart….I have no currency to “trade” (offer). Walmart can tell me no…OR…I can barter a floor sweeping service for an agreed upon perceived value. The perceived value of my service is relative to the bargaining of Walmart and what Walmart perceives the value of my services. Walmart can decide…hmmmm…ok you sweep my floors and for this I will give you the items you requested. At the end of the day, there is no deficit or no surplus on trade or trade value. We both walk away happy and the books are squared.

    Now on a global scale. Let us say that D13 of Texas has a surplus of oil and gas and it has put a value on it. D13 can go to the country of JAC and say…” Oh mighty country of JAC, I have oil and gas that you desperately need but I recognize that you are a poor country and have no currency to trade. But you have a new ore named Berglemopzoom. I could use this new discovery so will you exchange a certain amount of Berglemopzoom for my more valuable oil/gas. However, I do not wish to have a set of books that says you owe me more, so, I choose to take Bergelmopzoom at a two to one rate.”

    The mighty country of JAC says..” wait, that is not fair. It is going to cost me twice my ore for oil and gas?” D13 says, ” yes sir, those are my terms. How about it?” There will be no deficits, no surpluses, no trade imbalance.

    JAC really needs what D13 has and decides to trade at a 2-1 ratio as there is no other source out there for JAC to go to for if there were, the Country of JAC would thumb his nose and trade elsewhere.

    Now the question is….. Would either of you consider both suggestions as free trade? The Walmart issue and the mighty Country of JAC. If the answer is no, then why?

    Now, another twist. The tropical paradise of BF is sitting over there and has formulated a way of producing pure water from salt water. Texas, being dry in some parts and moist in others needs more water…especially the pure water that BF has. The lovely paradise of BF and the Oil and Gas producer of D13 Texas get together and hash out a price but the price that is agreed upon is different than the price that D13 bargained for in the mighty land of JAC. BF and D13 trade equal. 1 for 1.

    JAC is upset because he did not get the same treatment. So he goes to BF and wants to trade 1 for 1 for Bergkemopzoom of which BF says no, I do not have a great desire for that ore but pure water is worth more and I will trade you 2 for 1. JAC needs not only the pure water but the oil and gas as well. He is furious but has to trade for the sake of his country.

    Question 1…… is this free trade? There are no sanctions because the price is bartered and agreed upon by two nations. There is no deficit nor a surplus. The books are square.

    Question 2….. would either of you consider this economic warfare to JAC? If so, why? Neither BF nor D13 conspired against JAC…it was the artful negotiation of need vs price.

    Question 3…..JAC, do you consider yourself to be discriminated against? and, Are you now justified to impose your will (terrorism) upon other sovereign states to try to overthrow, or at least organize economic hardship on D13 or BF because you feel ostracized? Your ore is your only reliable export but you get hammered in negotiations because of your need vs demand from D13 or BF…but you had to trade for survival…and hard ball though it was, you had no choice.

    Question 4….BF, under your theory of Natural Law, all things being equal, do you feel JAC is justified in exporting his brand of terrorism against you because he feels he had no choice? After all, the two of you negotiated in good faith and a decision reached relative to what each had and wanted. Even worse…JAC is so pissed he bombs your number one class hotel on beach front because of the perceived hardship you placed on him.

    Question 5…. because D13 of Texas and BF are perceived superpowers with lots of money, and are artful enough to negotiate trade agreements w/o deficits and surpluses on an agreed upon price and use their strength to formulate and negotiate better agreements individually and not collectively, is this not free trade regardless of value?

    Question 6….JAC is pissed at D13 as well saying that because D13 is a superpower, D13 should renegotiate more favorably….after all, D13 is rich and JAC is poor. JAC decides to hit D13 with a violent act. BF decides to try to find out why JAC is pissed and to understand his plight and sends an envoy but D13 feels that the negotiations were free and open and JAC made his decision…so D13 decides to send a carrier group off his shores. Are not both BF and D13 correct in their response? After all, all negotiations were free and open.

    Thanks guys.

    • Your definition of “Free Trade”

      Voluntary, unmolested trade between entities (individual or group)

      Would you agree that the value of anything to trade is relative only to the parties involved?

      Yes. Value is wholly subject to the eye of the viewer.

      Your descriptions are basically correct.

      Now, simply insert into your thinking that “money” is no different then oil or ore or sweeping floors or apples as a ‘good’.

      When you are able to do that, and still articulate and understand what you’ve laid out regarding everything else, you are now becoming an “Austrian” economist in your thinking.

      Now the question is….. Would either of you consider both suggestions as free trade?

      Yes.

      “Need” is not a measure of voluntary.

      I need food – does that mean buying food at the grocery means the grocer is violent, coercing my purchase? No.

      It means he is voluntarily offering his goods for trade – with the right to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ at any deal. I enter the deal the same way – I can say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the deal.

      Though that means I may value that apple more – thus will pay more – the higher or lower value of goods or services does not determine free and voluntary nature of the trade. You are not hungry, so that apple may be worth less to you and you don’t buy at a particular price.

      This difference in value allows the one who desires it more to get the good. “High bid wins”. You don’t want the apple that badly, whereas I do. I am willing to pay more, so I get it.

      JAC is upset because he did not get the same treatment.

      So what? All that means is the Texas wants water more than it wants what JAC has. Why is that wrong?

      JAC can be upset that the sun rises in the West too – his opinion and temperament does not determine right from wrong, or freedom vs slavery.

      JAC’s product simply isn’t as valuable to Texas – that is all.

      Question 1…… is this free trade?

      Yes.

      Do not muddle ‘value’ with determining ‘voluntary (free) trade’.

      Because water may be more valuable then oil does not make the trade coerced.

      Question 2….. would either of you consider this economic warfare to JAC?

      No.

      Question 3…..JAC, do you consider yourself to be discriminated against?

      Why? The ore simply isn’t valuable.

      Do you believe a man is being discriminated against because he can’t sell the dust on his furniture for the same weight in gold?

      That is what you are asking here.

      Because something is valued higher by someone else suddenly makes trading for it “unvoluntary” or “coerced”.

      Question 4….BF, under your theory of Natural Law, all things being equal,

      Whoops. Foot off the gas, D13.

      Natural Law has nothing to do with “all things being equal”.

      Natural Law applies equally to all things, throughout the Universe.

      Think “gravity” – You are most likely a larger man than I – we are not equal. But gravity applies equally upon us.

      Even worse…JAC is so pissed he bombs your number one class hotel on beach front because of the perceived hardship you placed on him.

      Does a man have the right to kill the man who doesn’t value house dust the same way as gold?

      Question 5…. because D13 of Texas and BF are perceived superpowers with lots of money,

      What is money? Nothing but a product/good.

      So saying “Texas” is a superpower because it has lots of goods.

      Is this not free trade regardless of value?

      Is it voluntary? If so, then yes.

      Question 6….JAC is pissed at D13 as well saying that because D13 is a superpower, D13 should renegotiate more favorably….after all, D13 is rich and JAC is poor.

      So?

      Does the man who has gold have to be more ‘favorable’ in his trade with the man who has house dust, just because the man with house dust wants the gold?

      The response to violence – well, you’ve left the economic questions and moved into politics where different theories are presumed.

      • BF says: Voluntary, unmolested trade between entities (individual or group)

        D13 asks: Group = nation as well?

        BF says: Whoops. Foot off the gas, D13.

        Natural Law has nothing to do with “all things being equal”.

        Natural Law applies equally to all things, throughout the Universe.

        Think “gravity” – You are most likely a larger man than I – we are not equal. But gravity applies equally upon us.

        D13 says: Nah, pedal is to the metal. I understand it the same way. You just said it better.

        BF says: The response to violence – well, you’ve left the economic questions and moved into politics where different theories are presumed.

        D13 asks: Hmmmm…why have I left the economic question? After all, it would be a response to violence as a result of economics. (ie. he is pissed because he perceives unfair economic trading.) However, I can see where the political lines and the economic lines become blurred. Would you say the same if I did not respond with a Carrier group but organized an economic boycott? Or would you prefer no response.

        OR, I wonder, since the mighty country of JAC fired the first shot (so to speak), JAC is the one that changed the dynamics. Then it is a political situation regardless of economic boycotts or blockades.

        Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm……

      • Oh thank you for your response. Appreciated. I will tell you why as soon as I extrapolate some more.

        • BF says: Voluntary, unmolested trade between entities (individual or group)

          D13 asks: Group = nation as well?

          Depends on what you define as “nation”.

          Government? The People?

          In the end, all trade happens between individuals.

          If I’m a Toyota dealer in USA – there is a person who is responsible for buying the cars from Toyota in Japan – and there is a person over there accepting the orders.

          It isn’t “USA” buying from “Japan”.

          D13 says: Nah, pedal is to the metal. I understand it the same way. You just said it better.

          Yeah, I re-read your post and I put the emphasis on your sentence in the wrong spot.

          When I put it in the right spot, we did say the same thing.

          BF says: The response to violence – well, you’ve left the economic questions and moved into politics where different theories are presumed.

          D13 asks: Hmmmm…why have I left the economic question?

          Austrian economic theory starts with the core premise of “Human Action”. The reason for a human to act is to solve a desire for his own life.

          There is no judgment on the validity of that desire, just that a human acts with “a purpose”.

          To act with a purpose for one’s own desire requires freedom to act.

          Thus, Austrian economic theory starts with the premises that “free market economic system (that is, the right to act freely with a purpose for one’s own life) is the optimum economic system” and thus, all cause/effects are viewed from that core.

          So, free market that has violence will create a series of consequences that the Austrians economist can describe based on the distortion UPON a free market and a distortion OF economics.

          That distortion creates non-economic outcomes from the Austrian point of view – thus creates Political outcomes.

          Would you say the same if I did not respond with a Carrier group but organized an economic boycott?

          It would depend entirely on how you enforce the boycott.

          If you pulled out your weapons and by threat or act of violence prevented other citizens from trading – then no, you’re political.

          If you stood upon a soap box, and with powerful rhetoric convinced other citizens to join you – then, yes, you’re economic.

  32. D13

    Your definition of “Free Trade”, please….and: WILLING SELLER AND WILLING BUYER. NO GOVT INTERFERENCE IN THE TRANSACTION. BOTH PARTIES ACCEPT WHAT INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AS ADEQUATE, THUS INFORMED. SAME AS FREE MARKET VALUE ESSENTIALLY

    would you agree that the value of anything to trade is relative only to the parties involved? YES

    For example, BF used Walmart. Ok…let us use Walmart. I go to Walmart….I have no currency to “trade” (offer). Walmart can tell me no…OR…I can barter a floor sweeping service for an agreed upon perceived value. The perceived value of my service is relative to the bargaining of Walmart and what Walmart perceives the value of my services. Walmart can decide…hmmmm…ok you sweep my floors and for this I will give you the items you requested. At the end of the day, there is no deficit or no surplus on trade or trade value. We both walk away happy and the books are squared. YES

    Now on a global scale. Let us say that D13 of Texas has a surplus of oil and gas and it has put a value on it. D13 can go to the country of JAC and say…” Oh mighty country of JAC, I have oil and gas that you desperately need but I recognize that you are a poor country and have no currency to trade. But you have a new ore named Berglemopzoom. I could use this new discovery so will you exchange a certain amount of Berglemopzoom for my more valuable oil/gas. However, I do not wish to have a set of books that says you owe me more, so, I choose to take Bergelmopzoom at a two to one rate.”

    The mighty country of JAC says..” wait, that is not fair. It is going to cost me twice my ore for oil and gas?” D13 says, ” yes sir, those are my terms. How about it?” There will be no deficits, no surpluses, no trade imbalance.

    JAC really needs what D13 has and decides to trade at a 2-1 ratio as there is no other source out there for JAC to go to for if there were, the Country of JAC would thumb his nose and trade elsewhere. YES

    Now the question is….. Would either of you consider both suggestions as free trade? The Walmart issue and the mighty Country of JAC. If the answer is no, then why? YES, WHEW THAT SAVED ME WRITING AN EXPLANATION.

    Now, another twist. The tropical paradise of BF is sitting over there and has formulated a way of producing pure water from salt water. Texas, being dry in some parts and moist in others needs more water…especially the pure water that BF has. The lovely paradise of BF and the Oil and Gas producer of D13 Texas get together and hash out a price but the price that is agreed upon is different than the price that D13 bargained for in the mighty land of JAC. BF and D13 trade equal. 1 for 1. CONGRATULATIONS TO BF AND D13

    JAC is upset because he did not get the same treatment. So he goes to BF and wants to trade 1 for 1 for Bergkemopzoom of which BF says no, I do not have a great desire for that ore but pure water is worth more and I will trade you 2 for 1. JAC needs not only the pure water but the oil and gas as well. He is furious but has to trade for the sake of his country. JAC WOULDN’T BE UPSET, BUT I’LL GO ALONG.

    Question 1…… is this free trade? There are no sanctions because the price is bartered and agreed upon by two nations. There is no deficit nor a surplus. The books are square. YES

    Question 2….. would either of you consider this economic warfare to JAC? If so, why? Neither BF nor D13 conspired against JAC…it was the artful negotiation of need vs price. NO

    Question 3…..JAC, do you consider yourself to be discriminated against? NO

    and, Are you now justified to impose your will (terrorism) upon other sovereign states to try to overthrow, or at least organize economic hardship on D13 or BF because you feel ostracized? NO

    Your ore is your only reliable export but you get hammered in negotiations because of your need vs demand from D13 or BF…but you had to trade for survival…and hard ball though it was, you had no choice. ACTUALLY YOUR OIL IS NOT NECESSARY FOR MY SURVIVAL. MY CHOICE IN SHORT TERM IS TRADE. IN LONG TERM IT IS TO UNLEASH THE INTELLECTUAL CAPACITY OF MY NATION OF JAC IN HOPES ONE OR MORE OF THE JACS WILL FIND AN ALTERNATIVE TO YOUR PRECIOUS BUT STINKY TEXAS CRUDE.

    Question 4….BF, under your theory of Natural Law, all things being equal, do you feel JAC is justified in exporting his brand of terrorism against you because he feels he had no choice? After all, the two of you negotiated in good faith and a decision reached relative to what each had and wanted. Even worse…JAC is so pissed he bombs your number one class hotel on beach front because of the perceived hardship you placed on him. IF THIS IS TRUE THEN I FEAR THE COUNTRY OF JAC IS DOOMED.

    Question 5…. because D13 of Texas and BF are perceived superpowers with lots of money, and are artful enough to negotiate trade agreements w/o deficits and surpluses on an agreed upon price and use their strength to formulate and negotiate better agreements individually and not collectively, is this not free trade regardless of value? YES, IF IT MEETS THE FREE TRADE REQUIREMENT.

    Question 6….JAC is pissed at D13 as well saying that because D13 is a superpower, D13 should renegotiate more favorably….after all, D13 is rich and JAC is poor. JAC decides to hit D13 with a violent act. BF decides to try to find out why JAC is pissed and to understand his plight and sends an envoy but D13 feels that the negotiations were free and open and JAC made his decision…so D13 decides to send a carrier group off his shores. Are not both BF and D13 correct in their response? After all, all negotiations were free and open. YES

    NOW WHAT IS D13 GOING TO DO TO BF DUE TO HIM SENDING AN ENVOY TO TALK WITH JAC?

    PLEASE RECOGNIZE THAT YOUR EXAMPLE ASSUMES NO OTHER PEOPLE OR NATIONS EXIST. NOT A TRUE PICTURE. THERE ARE OTHER OPTIONS AVAILABLE TO JAC THAT COULD EXCLUDE BF AND D13. AS LONG AS NIETHER USE THERE ECONOMIC OR MILITARY POWER TO INTERFERE IN THOSE OTHER ARRANGEMENTS.

    YOUR WELCOME.

    • JAC says: PLEASE RECOGNIZE THAT YOUR EXAMPLE ASSUMES NO OTHER PEOPLE OR NATIONS EXIST. NOT A TRUE PICTURE. THERE ARE OTHER OPTIONS AVAILABLE TO JAC THAT COULD EXCLUDE BF AND D13. AS LONG AS NIETHER USE THERE ECONOMIC OR MILITARY POWER TO INTERFERE IN THOSE OTHER ARRANGEMENTS.

      D13 says: No sir, I understand that there are 100’s of possible options but I did assert that no one else wanted your ore. I can extrapolate from there. Yes, you could exclude BF and D13 if the options were available but I was limiting on purpose.

      JAC asks: NOW WHAT IS D13 GOING TO DO TO BF DUE TO HIM SENDING AN ENVOY TO TALK WITH JAC?

      D13 says: Nothing. Not my business. It is the business of BF and JAC.

  33. D13

    MORE

    As an Objectivist (almost) Nation, JAC would never view the trades as coersion or warfare, etc.

    JAC due to its metaphysical view of the world would simply recognize the reality of the situation JAC was in. An isolated little place with only one thing to trade, ie desired by others. JAC’s epistemology would then dictate that JAC use reason to find a solution that brings JAC’s reality closer in alignment with JAC’s desired future condition. That being a flourishing life for JAC

    By the way, your examples have one serious flaw that violates the principles we established at the beginning. By the end you are confusing individuals and groups (traders) with governments. JAC the person or JAC, LLC did the deal. Not the nation of JAC. D13 the person or D13, Inc did the deal, not the nation of D13.

    So if JAC resorted to terrorism, then the govt of JAC would have him/they arrested for crime. Because on JAC the initiation of coersive force against innocent people is IMMORAL and ILLEGAL.

    You having fun with this?

    Can’t wait to see where your taking me.
    JAC

    • JAC says: By the way, your examples have one serious flaw that violates the principles we established at the beginning. By the end you are confusing individuals and groups (traders) with governments. JAC the person or JAC, LLC did the deal. Not the nation of JAC. D13 the person or D13, Inc did the deal, not the nation of D13.

      D13 says: No, it was meant as nations…not individuals. I understand individuality.

      But thank you for your responses….much appreciated and I will show you where I am going with this but doing a little soul searching on my own also.

    • Got to thinking about this: JAC says – As an Objectivist (almost) Nation, JAC would never view the trades as coersion or warfare, etc.

      D13 muses: So, JAC would assume that since he has only one thing to trade and because the mighty nation of JAC is objective, then no matter where the price was set, it is JAC’s problem and JAC would never view the higher prices as coersive or warfare….UNLESS, it is an organized embargo or trade sanction against JAC.

      • D13

        YES……………NO…………DAMN STRAIGHT

        But remember, the price is not being set by a Govt.

        But I must say, even if it was, it is their (your) price.

        MY CHOICE whether to agree or not.

        MY PROBLEM TO SOLVE……….PEACEFULLY.

      • D13

        Colonel, I just read your other comment regarding person vs country.

        I assumed here that you started with Free Trade which I and BF defined as trade between people or groups, NOT governments.

        You started with D13 of Texas…….I figured individual not TEXAS the govt. This only matters because using the definition you requested Governments would not be trading with each other. They do not OWN anything that could be traded. That included money, which is the property of the citizens who own it.

        So, which if any of the players are countries vs individuals or groups?

        Or, are we using a different definition of free trade?

        This is fun, hope your enjoying.

        JAC

  34. You are right. It does look as if it is individual. I was referencing countries but understand that individuals own the property. I did make an assumption that I now see as flawed and that is the fact that the state had control over trade. in my example, and I was talking State….which means it is not free trade unless bought from the individual in fair exchange and then engaged as a state with other states…such as weapons systems.

    I am enroute to a middle east solution. Give me a few more hours to mull over. But you are right, it is fun as a warrior trying to understand your and BF’s philosophy. However, I am a little confused right at the moment in that both of you have said that economic sanctions are a form of warfare (or at least that is how I interpreted your definitions). Under that definition, it seems that it matters not whether I brandish an A/C group or mere rhetoric from the soap box. If the result ends in economic sanctions and those sanctions hurt the public and not the government, then what is the difference?

    • D13:

      Economic sanctions I would consider as coersive force but not warfare. But yes, they usually wind up hurting or even killing the innocent.

      The other sticky wicket is that in today’s situation trade between individuals or lets say free individuals and another state can be viewed as an action by the govt and/or nation where the free man resides.

      I think you know two opposing examples of what I mean.

      Looking forward to your conept once fleshed out.

      JAC

    • However, I am a little confused right at the moment in that both of you have said that economic sanctions are a form of warfare (or at least that is how I interpreted your definitions).

      As I pointed out, it depends on how they are enforced.

      If someone over here prevents trade by force – that is, enforces the embargo with violence – then it is a form of warfare.

      If, however, it is an act of influence by argument – that is, you convince me by the weigh of your argument that I should join your embargo – that is, I’m still free to decide to trade or not – then its not warfare.

      If the result ends in economic sanctions and those sanctions hurt the public and not the government, then what is the difference?

      If I petition people not to buy from Walmart, does that not hurt the employees? Yet, it is my right to not buy from Walmart. If I convince you by my argument that you should avoid Walmart too – is that not your right to freely avoid shopping?

      The benefit or loss to employees of my free choice to enter into trade or not does not matter or measure in my decision to trade – just like they do not consider my economic situation when they cash their pay checks.

      As long as the participation in the embargo is voluntary – that is, even if you don’t trade, I still can – then it is merely a decision of free men with their right of association.

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