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Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Gazing Into 2017 Together

Exothermic Reactors,

The Archdruid, who predicted a year ago that Donald Trump would be elected, has his 2017 predictions here. The trends he noted continue, primarily that industrial capitalism is mired in the swamp it has polluted, and can't drain, while burning dirty, expensive fuel, which leaves less wealth, while all of that wealth goes to the wealthiest people.
He wonders what the 50 degree warmer Arctic, and loss of polar ice will do to global climate. 
I will advance my own prediction: EXXON CEO, soon to be Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, will lift sanctions against Russia, and EXXON will drill in the Russian Arctic, as already planned out and contracted. 
This will be a big boost to Russia, EXXON and the industrial north, and plenty of CO2 will get made. 
This may slightly extend and soften the decline of the world we know.

Harvard Professor, George Borjas immigrated to the US with his widowed mother in 1962, shortly after the Cuban Revolution, and the failed Bay of Pigs invasion he saw from a distance. He has become an immigration expert, and he says that there are costs and benefits in immigration, and they can be assessed, and they generally fall upon different groups of people. He is unpopular with neoliberal orthodoxy, but respected for his painstaking analysis. 
Good article about immigration, with implications for national policy.

German Economics Professor, Richard Werner says that the people of the world are awakening to the fact that banks create money from thin air, and charge them interest in real goods and services. Bankers want to lock in their control by completely eliminating physical currency, and only allowing electronic transactions. Anyone can be frozen out, starved out, have savings taken, whatever in this system. Nobody would accept that. Everybody would stuff cash in the mattress, unless the banks gave everybody a basic income to spend. Who could refuse that? It would be digital-income-only, of course. It would replace Welfare, Food Stamps, Social Security, etc. It would theoretically be much simpler, but you remember how computers were going to eliminate wasted paper, right?

India might try out the universal electronic basic income. (Boy, what a mess!)

Hmmm, it says here that the US is pushing India into this huge cashless-society uncontrolled- experiment. This is destroying India's economy, right? Who benefits? 
"Important lessons" will be learned by central bankers, and Indian people are suffering as their farmers destroy food and debts go unpaid.

Ron Paul: "As the US mainstream media obsessed last week about Russia’s supposed “hacking” of the US elections and President Obama’s final round of Russia sanctions in response, something very important was taking place under the media radar. As a result of a meeting between foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey last month, a ceasefire in Syria has been worked out and is being implemented. So far it appears to be holding, and after nearly six years of horrible warfare the people of Syria are finally facing the possibility of rebuilding their lives."

UK Ambassador to the EU, Ivan Rogers, resigns in protest. Sir Ivan was, perhaps Britain's most skilled negotiator within the EU, said things that were unpopular. He was ignored, undercut and maligned by Brexit advocates who demanded simplicity, while he predicted treaties could take 10 years to complete. It will happen, and it will be a mess, and he will not be taking credit for the complications.

Charles Hugh Smith: Prosperity = Abundant Work + Low Cost of Living
"This matters because the number one cause of the high cost of living is artificial scarcity created and maintained by monopolies, cartels, and the government that serves their interests."   

Addressing Systemic Drag

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