Saturday, September 30, 2017

Final Testament

Seeing Clearly,

"We are dying here, and if we don't get the food and water into people's hands, what we are going to see here is something close to genocide."  Carmen Yulin Cruz, Mayor, San Juan Puerto Rico, says with her voice breaking and tears welling up.
Do watch the brief video. This does not look politically motivated. She's painfully speaking her heart, despite her obvious hesitancy to do so.
"Political Attack", tweets POTUS Trump.

Brad Setser's view of the financial position of Puerto Rico and her creditors. Instructive, really...

Puerto Rico is Our Future, Richard Heinberg. Right-On! Heinberg presented an alternative future scenario to Peurto Rican officals in 2013. Now is the right time to enact it. It would mean financial firms like Goldman Sachs lose control of trends and events. (Yeah, prob'ly not yet...)

We are about to see what forced migration from climate disasters looks like in America. It is way different from what economic migrants, with job skills, moving to a market for those skills. How many Katrina refugees do you know? How are they doing for work, compared to wetbacks? (No derogation intended. These are all my patients. I have labored as a wetback in 2 foreign countries, myself.)

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson acknowledged for the first time that the US is in direct communication with the government of North Korea over its missile and nuclear tests... Tillerson is in China on Saturday for what the NYT described as a “brief visit.” ... “We ask, ‘Would you like to talk?’ We have lines of communication to Pyongyang – we’re not in a dark situation, a blackout. We have a couple, three channels open to Pyongyang.” ... When asked whether those channels ran through China, he shook his head. “Directly,” he said. “We have our own channels.”

Battle stations are fully manned in Catalonia, whether by Spanish police, or Catalans in pajamas, trying to keep a school open for tomorrow's vote. Both sides have long overshot any hope for compromise. The question is how severe the crisis will be. There is a lot of hidden money riding on this. People have long been manipulated. There is no fundamental existential crisis, demanding this political crisis. This article shows the dirty laundry and tax-sheltered billions.

Iraqi Kurdish Independence Referendum update and context:
In the mid 1960s and 70s Israel cooperated with Iran, then a U.S. ally under the Shah, to fight against its Arab enemies - Iraq, Syria and Egypt. As part of the cooperation the Mossad sent Lt. Colonel Tzuri Sagi to develop plans for and build up a Kurdish army to fight Iraqi troops in northern Iraq. Tzuri Sagi was also responsible for the Israeli assassination attempts against Saddam Hussein. His Kurdish cooperation partner was the leader of the Barzani clan, Mullah Mustafa Barzani. The Kurdish army the Israelis created is now known as Peshmerga. The son of Mullah Mustafa Barzani, Masoud Barzani, is now the illegitimate president of the Kurdish region of Iraq.

Three Quarters of a Million Humans in Yemen have cholera, some of the worst diarrhea that war and poverty can buy:
The epidemic is the worst of its kind in modern records, and has surpassed the number of cases in Haiti’s epidemic that occurred between 2010 and 2015 in a matter of months. More than half the population lacks access to clean drinking water. These terrible conditions are partly the result of the bombing damage to water and sewage treatment plants. The Hadi government’s decision to move the central bank has also contributed to the collapse in public services.

Paul Craig Roberts explains current US political economy:
What we are witnessing in the United States is the first country to reverse the development process and to go backward by giving up industry, manufacturing, and tradable professional skill jobs.  The labor force is becoming Third World with lowly paid domestic service jobs taking the place of high-productivity, high-value added jobs.

Upon the Next Crisis, the Rules Will Suddenly Change (to benefit elites, not the rest of us) Charles Hugh Smith [Priority #1 is always to expand power and control]

The RepubliTrump tax proposal will reduce federal tax revenues (increase deficit), increase taxes on the middle-class, and mostly benefit the top 1%, precisely as promised (not to you; the other promise.)

David Stockman, who has been through that process, summarizes: "After nine months of work these geniuses have come up with $6 trillion of easy to propose tax rate cuts and virtually no plan whatsoever to pay for them."

Take all of the property in poor countries. Make the people dependent upon your wages and charity to barely survive. Complain about them. (Hey, it's happening here, too!)

Modern Monetary Theory, paying attention to the man behind the curtain... [Hey, this is really clear, no frock-pomp-and-dirge at all!]
"For those seeking a grand, unifying sociopolitical economic theory, MMT will disappoint. But as an analytic tool, MMT clarifies who holds genuine power—sovereignty—within society, and how they organize the money system to serve their interests. Unsurprisingly, this is often a story of tremendous cruelty and exploitation. But the revelation that the rules of money are not immutable laws of nature but are instead created and constantly modified by people opens up possibilities beyond the scope of our current political imagination."

Tropical rain forests take carbon out of the atmosphere, and build it into trees and leaves, except when you log and burn them. 
Tropical forests released as much carbon into the atmosphere last year as all or US transportation. They didn't mean to, and it wasn't their fault...


Thursday, September 28, 2017

Trump's Katrina

Logistically Hampered,

“There are plenty of ships and plenty of cargo to come into the island,” said Mark Miller, a spokesman for Crowley, based in Jacksonville, Florida. “From there, that’s where the supply chain breaks down -- getting the goods from the port to the people on the island who need them.”

It is such a logistical logjam that Washington will need at least 3 weeks to even assess what is needed in Puerto Rico, even in broad terms, let alone talk about paying for it.
(I suspect Goldman and Citi will have had ample time to help Washington get a handle on priorities and approaches to action by then.)

Having taken long to speak at all, then blabbing about paying back debts, while saying people were doing fine, Donald Trump belatedly sends military rescue effort to Puerto Rico, as it is rumored to become "Trump's Katrina". (Manuel, my MD friend got 2 minutes to tell his wife he was alive on a military telephone Monday.)

Wall Street got a bailout, why not Puerto Rico? (Only Wall Street gets bailouts, and nobody gets debt reductions. Do you hear! That's the system! Now, let's talk about helping the banks help those poor people who can't get out of Puerto Rico, and improving the economy so that they can tighten their belts and pay what they owe.)

"As a result of this tortured history, pressuring China to exercise political influence over North Korea means the United States is asking Beijing to do precisely what Pyongyang has most resented over the years. This will only antagonize North Korea even more... Moreover, carrying Washington’s water is also not in Beijing’s interests."  [This brief history of Chinese/Korean relations since WW-2, and the historical vassal-master relationship of their states before that, is very useful context.]

The US remains "offended" by South Korean President Moon's offer of military de-escalation talks with North Korea. (Vassal, know thy place!)

The Illusion of Prosperity: We have borrowed to keep up with our bills since 1990, at an accelerating pace, and it is soon to collapse.

All those decades of borrowing show u as "assets" in the hands of the 0.1%.

Economic Sanctions against Russia did not harm Russia, but mostly harmed EU economies. (It's official.)

The US has carried out covert war against the government of Venezuela since the democratic election of Hugo Chavez in 1999. Now the EU is pressured to enforce more sanctions on Venezuela. The history lesson here is quite good. The EU really needs to do the Russia thing with Venezuela.

Spanish police are ordered to pre-occupy all polling places and arrest anyone who tries to come in and participate in the crime against democracy this Sunday, October 1. They resent themselves as targets in place. They must also have mobile reinforcement forces. They will be vulnerable to massive surge attacks. Other voting arrangements are certainly being arranged, like mobile ballot collection teams.

The EU has tried to battle the huge financial backing of Monsanto and friends, and regulate endocrine disrupting chemicals in our food chain, and farms. Every step, or even the pre-steps have been heavily fought with delaying and obscuring tactics, and bribes and political assassination techniques. (The capitalist system must grow unfettered until it kills all of it's hosts.)

Invisibly Threatened

Wednesday, September 27, 2017


Beautiful Dreamers,

The Less you sleep, the sooner you die. Thanks, Dan.
■ Two-thirds of adults in developed nations fail to obtain the nightly eight hours of sleep recommended by the World Health Organisation.
■ An adult sleeping only 6.75 hours a night would be predicted to live only to their early 60s without medical intervention.
■ A 2013 study reported that men who slept too little had a sperm count 29% lower than those who regularly get a full and restful night’s sleep.
■ If you drive a car when you have had less than five hours’ sleep, you are 4.3 times more likely to be involved in a crash. If you drive having had four hours, you are 11.5 times more likely to be involved in an accident.
■ A hot bath aids sleep not because it makes you warm, but because your dilated blood vessels radiate inner heat, and your core body temperature drops. To successfully initiate sleep, your core temperature needs to drop about 1C.
■ The time taken to reach physical exhaustion by athletes who obtain anything less than eight hours of sleep, and especially less than six hours, drops by 10-30%.
■ There are now more than 100 diagnosed sleep disorders, of which insomnia is the most common.
■ Morning types, who prefer to awake at or around dawn, make up about 40% of the population. Evening types, who prefer to go to bed late and wake up late, account for about 30%. The remaining 30% lie somewhere in between.

Peace with North Korea is possible (as is reunification of this ancient culture, occupied by either China or Japan through much of history. Now one half is independent and one half is militarily occupied. As little as we hear about it, reuinification is the obvious goal for all Koreans.)

General McMaster says there are four or five Korean scenarios being electronically war-gamed, "some uglier than others", like the one with global nuclear armageddon, or just the one where all North Koreans get fried, along with most  South Koreans and half of Japanese. What I want to see is the scenario where a peace treaty ends the Korean war, and negotiations begin to end military occupation, concurrent with complete de-nuclearization, and culminating in national reunification.

There is no electricity in Puerto Rico without your own generator, and diesel for it, and no clean water, and it's the hot season. How will we cope when this happens to us. History goes round and round with wars, weather events and fuel shortages. Could you sleep at all? Would you get cholera? Who takes care of whom? Where is water, food and a propane camp stove coming from?

In weird news conference with Spanish President Rajoy, US President Trump says everything is going swimmingly with food, water and medical relief to Puerto Rico, and that he met lots of Puerto Ricans in New York. "They are great people". Also mentioned is $79 billion of defaulted debt, that "unfortunately has to be dealt with". (Some say things are really bad for all those people and hospitals without power and clean water, that the President is bullshitting. How rude of them...)

Puerto Rico needs a major relief effort. Where is the massive US military relief mission? (Oh, secretly preparing to invade Venezuela? OK, that comes first, I guess...)

Holders of Puerto Rican debt respond to massive desolation of lives, economy and infrastructure, by offering loans at improved rates (if the US taxpayers will back them, a much improved position). Since Goldman Sachs and Citibank must always be made whole, a way will be found to do this. Thank God for this crisis!

Is there a Spanish cop left anywhere outside of Catalona? Where are they all supposed to stay? How will they take all the ballot boxes away from everybody without killing people?
“Today we can affirm that there will be no effective referendum in Catalonia,” the Spanish government’s representative in Catalonia, Enric Millo, told reporters on Tuesday. “All the referendum’s logistics have been dismantled.” ... The US president sided with Rajoy, saying it would be “foolish” for Catalans to try to leave Spain. “I think that Spain is a great country and it should remain united,” he said.

Announcement expected that the lowest tax rate will rise, while the highest rates fall. Various deductions dance around. Meet "Middle Class Tax Relief", by Goldman grads. ("Carried interest" loophole not mentioned. Oh, it must have been eliminated, right?)

Russia has to set up a military base near Dier EzZor, Syria to protect the oilfields from all the name-changing, American bankrolled "democratic forces", trying for years to  finalize control, and no longer called ISIS, or Daesh.

Completely drug-resistant Malaria is booming. Global warming will help it move northwards in Europe, and soon expand into the promised lands of North America, (Don't worry, as long as we have AC in our sealed houses and cars we probably won't catch it.)

Sleeping With Mosquitoes 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Polite Words For Murder

Barefoot Microentrepreneurs,

Thanks Dan (I guess), This is vile, depraved and sinister (and "Nestle")
The new reality is captured by a single, stark fact: Across the world, more people are now obese than underweight. At the same time, scientists say, the growing availability of high-calorie, nutrient-poor foods is generating a new type of malnutrition, one in which a growing number of people are both overweight and undernourished... “To put it in stark terms: The diet is killing us.” ... Nestlé executives say their products have helped alleviate hunger, provided crucial nutrients, and that the company has squeezed salt, fat and sugar from thousands of items to make them healthier...  “Half the world’s population has not had a Coke in the last 30 days,” he said. “There’s 600 million teenagers who have not had a Coke in the last week. So the opportunity for that is huge.”... In 2010, a coalition of Brazilian food and beverage companies torpedoed a raft of measures that sought to limit junk food ads aimed at children... “Everyone here knows that Nestlé products are good for you,” she said, gesturing to cans of Mucilon, the infant cereal whose label says it is “packed with calcium and niacin,” but also Nescau 2.0, a sugar-laden chocolate powder. She became a Nestlé vendor two years ago, when her family of five was struggling to get by. Though her husband is still unemployed, things are looking up. With the $185 a month she earns selling Nestlé products, she was able to buy a new refrigerator, a television and a gas stove for the family’s three-room home at the edge of a fetid tidal marsh. The company’s door-to-door program fulfills a concept that Nestlé articulated in its 1976 annual shareholder report, which noted that “integration with the host country is a basic aim of our company.” ... Nestlé gives customers a full month to pay for their purchases. It also helps that saleswomen — the program employs only women — know when their customers receive Bolsa Família, a monthly government subsidy for low-income households. “The essence of our program is to reach the poor,” Mr. Barbosa said. “What makes it work is the personal connection between the vendor and the customer.” ... Two decades ago, it anointed itself a “nutrition health and wellness company.” ... But of the 800 products that Nestlé says are available through its vendors, Mrs. da Silva says her customers are mostly interested in only about two dozen of them, virtually all sugar-sweetened items like Kit-Kats... “It’s a crisis for our society because we are producing a generation of children with impaired cognitive abilities who will not reach their full potential.” ... The rising obesity rates are largely associated with improved economics, as families with increasing incomes embrace the convenience, status and flavors offered by packaged foods. Busy parents ply their toddlers with instant noodles and frozen chicken nuggets, meals that are often accompanied by soda... “I always thought fatter is better when it comes to babies,” she said. She happily indulged his eating habits, which included frequent trips to fast-food outlets and almost no fruits and vegetables.

The Killing of History, John Pilger. Thanks Eleni. 
John Pilger was a news correspondent in Vietnam, during the war. There were no "misunderstandings" in Vietnam. It was the continuation of American foreign policy, by creating a false flag attack (Gulf of Tonkin) to justify to the American people, the massive expansion of an unwinnable war, not for freedom, but for empire. John Kennedy had already taken steps to get Americans out of Vietnam, but they were quietly reversed by his successor, right after that accident in Dallas. 
No, it's not ok to feel good for 3-4 million dead "gooks", and 58,000 killed American draftees, and 58,000 more who committed suicide, and all those who live on today as murderers and rapists. (Hi Dad. I know you are not reading this. I know you tried to do right.)

ISIS has no quarrel with other forces under US control in Syria. They ignore each other in close proximity, not taking defensive or offensive positions, just sort of saying "hi" and doing their thing, which is trying to get control of Syrian oilfields so the Syrian government can't. Russian surveillance photos illustrate.

Russian Special Forces repel a massive US coordinated attack near the oilfields, northeast of Hama, Syria. Warning from Russia is: "we'll blow them away next time."

Yesterday three high ranking Russian officers were killed in an "ISIS attack" in eastern-Syrian. It is likely that they were killed by U.S. special forces or insurgents under U.S. special forces control. The incident will be understood as a declaration of war. The U.S. Central Command in the Middle East wants the oil fields in east-Syria under control of its proxy forces to set up and control a U.S. aligned Kurdish mini-state in the area. The Syrian government, allied with Russia, needs the revenues of the oil fields to rebuild the country... For three years ISIS had besieged Syrian troops in Deir Ezzor city and its airport. It had not once managed to successfully attack the Syrian headquarter or to kill high ranking officers. Now, as U.S. proxy forces "advised" by U.S. special forces, have taken position north of Deir Ezzor, "ISIS" suddenly has the intelligence data and precision mortar capabilities to kill a bunch of visiting Russian officers? ... U.S. Central Command has declared war on the Russian contingent in Syria. A high ranking Russian general was killed. This inevitably requires a reaction. The response does not necessarily have to come from Russian forces.  Moscow has many capable allies in the area. The response does not necessarily have to come in Syria.

James Kunstler raises the obvious question about rebuilding bankrupt Puerto Rico with WHAT? He mentions Illinois, which can fail to pay everything it has promised since 1987, but can't be "bankrupt". It's unconstitutional.

No storm has ever destroyed a power grid as completely as Maria destroyed that of Puerto Rico. Power lines, transformers, geriatric power plants, hydroelectric dam, all destroyed.

Hospitals in Puerto Rico are not spared, as some generators die and others run out of diesel. (Hang in there, Manuel!)
"We need a massive military response", Surgeon Gonzalez Cancel said. Because if more help doesn't arrive soon, "people are going to start dying."

No electricity means "Cash-Only", if you need to buy something.

"The NFL doesn't seem to understand that while almost every American can agree that football is a great sport, roughly 50% of them will vehemently disagree with whatever political stance any given player or league exec decides to publicly announce.  And, since the NFL's future depends on selling overpriced ad spots to massive corporations looking for a consistent number of eyeballs, alienating any group of viewers, for whatever reason, is just bad for business." (American football is part of the military industrial complex, the entertaining-indoctrination-for-profit arm. A lot of $100 NFL jerseys got burned today, however...) "Steelers' offensive-lineman Alejandro Villanueva's jersey becomes an overnight best-seller after he stands for anthem."

“Ninety-four percent of Washington, DC, voted for Hillary Clinton." 
The "Permanent State" won't say "Donald Trump" at work. He's the enemy (Like they think he's "Voldemort", right?)

38 year old Alice Weidel, Alternative fr Deutschland Party leader is an economist who has worked for Goldman Sachs, fluent in Mandarin Chinese, and an open lesbian, who says legalizing same sex marriages was a wasted effort. She says that mideast immigrants are both "illiterate" in Europe, and "a brain drain" from their home countries, a classic misallocation-of-resources. 
It will be difficult to paint her as a stupid bigot, as her party enters German government after this weekend's election.


Sunday, September 24, 2017

Trump Fires Football

Laughing Out Loud,

Today's thought question: What happens if The Borg swallows The Alien?
The generals running the White House control every information input Donald Trump gets, providing them complete control of his world-view. This worked very well to control Ronald Reagan, who most people viewed favorably, and who was thought to mean well by many of the rest of us. Reagan rehearsed his lines...
Donald Trump, in his official Presidential persona, in service of the military end of the military industrial complex, bitch slapped the NFL on national TV, cussed them, and demanded that every (very expensive cash cow) player who does not stand for militarism be fired. American football, at all levels, prepares Americans to stand up and scream their support of organized aggression. Boys and young men really want to be the muscle-padded hyper-warriors they see on the gridiron, and emulate in video games. Trump attacking football players throws the whole finely tuned system of slick management of American perceptions, to feed both business and global aggression, into writhing spasms of paradox. How can the system extract itself from THIS without being called into question? Already too late. May the ravages of cognitive dissonace interrupt the super bowl halftime commercials!  Let the games begin! (without fans)

Steve Bannon, back running Breitbart, supports the good-Trump by opposing a "swamp creature", "Big L" Strange, who the controlled-Trump backs for Senate seat from Alabama.

Just before North Korea’s foreign minister was due to address the United Nations, the Pentagon announced that U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers escorted by fighter jets flew in international airspace over waters east of North Korea on Saturday, in a show of force which "demonstrated the range of military options available to President Donald Trump." The flight was the farthest north of the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea that any U.S. fighter jet or bomber has flown in the 21st century, the Pentagon added. (All strategic attack planes, all at night, farthest North ever, PTSD trigger.)

Spanish central government put 60,000 riot police on cruise ships to Catalonia, to prevent the October 1 independence referendum. 
Dock workers are not allowing the cruise ships to dock. Cruise ships lack amphibious assault capabilities. 
Spanish President Rajoy announces that all Catalan police forces will now be under direct control of the central government, as their paychecks already are. 
Catalan police will have their lawyers deliberate over that order, and can't accept it right now. 
When the police change sides, the revolution usually succeeds. The Spanish government still has the military, of course...
At this rate, Catalan police will be protecting polling places and ballot boxes from poorly prepared and deeply conflicted Spanish military forces next weekend.

Need to invest in America? 18 month loans for breast augmentation surgery. No Money Down!

Making America Great

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Important Decisions

Vested Interests,

Look, it's the Spanish Armada! 16,000 Spanish riot police board a cruise ship for a trip to Catalonia, to prevent the independence vote. It's no vacation.

South Korea announces sending $8 million in nutritional and medical aid for young children and pregnant women, to North Korea, as North Korean Foreign Minister describes Trump's UN speech, threatening to "totally destroy" North Korea if they attack US or allies, as "the sound of a dog barking". Trump's ideas for relations on the Korean Peninsula are described as "dog dreams". This all seems good. Now there is a "good cop" in South Korean President Moon. Good-cop + bad-cop is a negotiation format.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster said on CNN that "the president will make an important announcement today about the continuation of our efforts to resolve this problem with North Korea short of war."

Jose Escobar discusses the Trump Doctrine, elucidated in his UN speech. 
Venezuela, with largest proven oil reserves in the world is choking to death under a dictator and needs to be helped back to democracy, soon. Venezuela is the target of choice for the next war of empire. The gauntlet has been cast. Venezuela is in America's back yard, weakened by almost 2 decades of economic covert-war, and shooting America the finger. Russia and China must have plans to support Venezuela, but that can only go so far. what other threats do they hold in secret? What would be enough for America to step back from what has always been a red line, selling oil for not-dollars? 
Iran and North Korea are rhetorical-battlefields against the Belt-And-Road Eurasian integration policy of Russia and China. If attacked, they would suck a lot of life force out of Russia and China (but also the US and vassal-allies). Crimea, Ukraine and Syria don't get a lot of mention, or Cuba. Prospects  for gains are low, and costs high.

Financialization, and the Destruction of the Real Economy, Charles Hugh Smith. Maximizing profits requires killing whatever provides them. It works for the few, until they are finally successful. almost there, now...

Puerto Rico got ravaged. Infrastructure of all kinds is destroyed. I hope Manuel and his hospital have weathered the storm.
"The San Juan that we knew yesterday is no longer there," Yulín said, adding: "We're looking at four to six months without electricity" in Puerto Rico, home to nearly 3.5 million people.

Sixth mass extinction starting by 2100? It looks on track for that, based on carbon absorption capacity of oceans, as correlated with the 5 past mass extinction events, or 4 of them, anyway. Occasionally everything dies with normalish CO2.

Posthumously Rewarded

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Head Transplants

Absent Minded,

Eleni has sent these first four storied, all really linked. First, about how the military industrial complex assimilated Donald Trump the insurgent, by separating him from other insurgents, and controlling all of his information inputs.
The Junta members dictate their policies to Trump by only proposing to him certain alternatives. The one that is most preferable to them will be presented as the only desirable one. "There are no alternatives," Trump will be told again and again.

America's Slow Motion Military Coup
In a democracy, no one should be comforted to hear that generals have imposed discipline on an elected head of state. That was never supposed to happen in the United States. Now it has.

Whatever Happened to America? Paul Craig Roberts (We'll need America again soon. I hope we can find her.)
When I was born America was a nation. Today it is a diversity country in which various segments divided by race, gender, and sexual preference, preach hate toward other segments.

According to a report from the Israeli website Inian Merkazi and Abna news agency, Libyan security forces arrested a Daesh commander in the city of Benghazi — only to find out soon after that the man they had captured, Ephraim Benjamin, was also an agent of Mossad, the Israeli intelligence service. Benjamin, who was known in Libya as Abu Hafs, had begun work in Libya after the 2011 NATO-led invasion of Libya that ousted former leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Goldman does Trump. Goldman, Goldman, Uber Alles...
Cohn, as president and chief operating officer of Goldman Sachs, had been at the heart of it all. Aggressive and relentless, a former aluminum siding salesman and commodities broker with a nose for making money, Cohn had turned Goldman's sleepy home loan unit into what a Senate staffer called "one of the largest mortgage trading desks in the world." There, he aggressively pushed his sales team to sell mortgage-backed securities to unaware investors even as he watched over "the big short," Goldman's decision to bet billions of dollars that the market would collapse... Sens. Warren and Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat from Wisconsin, sent Cohn a letter a few days later. They brought up the $65 million (parting gift Goldman's board of directors gave him for "outstanding leadership" just days before Trump was sworn in) and asked him to publicly recuse himself from any issue that could have a direct or "significant indirect" impact on his old firm. Cohn never responded to the letter...

The Wall Street Journal calls for FBI wiretaps "in Trump Tower", on Campaign Manager Paul Manafort, to be investigated, since it is now clear that they existed and were repeatedly approved. (Does this mean that the generals' coup against the civilian neocons is winning? Who do I root for?)

Manafort says, "Release my wiretap transcripts, so everybody can see them. There's nothing there."

The World is Creeping Towards De-Dollarization (The latest global trade currency to wear out it's welcome)

Trade denominated in $US at Russian seaports is ordered to cease. (drip, drip, drip...)

"This is where the next financial crisis will come from", is somewhat mislabeled. "This is the dried up global money-forest, waiting for lightning and glowing cigarette-butts" might be a better title. Still really useful. (Keep in mind the Limits To Growth graphs and information from the last post. These are different presentations of the same underlying realities.)

The large majority of people who think they got rich because they’re smart will also lose their ‘fortunes’ because they think they’re smart. It is inevitable, it’s a mathematical certainty... Fortunes built on central banks largesses are virtual. You have to sell your assets to make them real. But the same mechanics that blew the bubbles in housing, stocks, bonds et al also keep people from selling them. Until it’s too late.

A dozen (more?) top Catalan officials are arrested by Spanish police for conspiracy-to-hold-illegal-democracy, or something. The attempts to prevent October 1 Catalan Independence referendum are becoming "whatever it takes". Police can arrest people and confiscate all the ballot boxes on October first, but they really, really don't want that picture to be developed. (I think they will have to do it, and that will not be the end of it, either...)

Death and blackness in Mexico City:

160 MPH winds and huge storm surge rip across Puerto Rico, maybe their worst storm ever. (My friend, Manuel is in his hospital, and will be working, working, working...)

Blowin' in the Wind