October 24, 2008 archive

Four at Four

  1. The NY Times reports OPEC orders a cut in oil production. OPEC will reduce its oil production by at least 1.5 million barrels a day to stem what it called ‘a dramatic collapse’ in oil prices as the world economy slows down and oil demand shrinks.”

    Fears of a global recession; however, meant the announcement did nothing to halt the price fall of oil futures which “fell 4.6 percent to $64.75 a barrel, their lowest since May 2007.” Oil was at $147 a barrel in July. “Many analysts expect global oil consumption to fall this year for the first time since 1983.”

Four at Four continues with the Detroit housing market collapse, Mexico’s oil reform, and erasing memories in mice.

Bush’s Eco Mess Passed Off To Obama To Fix

Bush has used a Machiavellian strategy to destroy our Endangered Species Act (ESA), leaving President Obama with another mess to clean up. Similar to the wars, global warming, Guantánamo and economic crisis, unscrupulous deception and political expediency were used to pump up corporate profits.  This is no surprise. Bush had a track record before assuming office of baseball teams and businesses that he ruined and then passed off to others to fix his messes.

The maddening part is the failure of Congress to hold the culprits even a little bit accountable for their messes. Impeachment is taken off the table and the likelihood of criminal prosecutions is slim. But, what about just good ole financial restitution? The government insiders and corporations that profited should be required to return those monies over to the government to pay for fixing this mess.  

The Politics of Fear 2

All humans live in fear.

It is part and parcel of the human condition, a legacy in part of evolving as prey for some pretty formidable predators there on the savanna. (If you are not too afraid of admitting that we are not some hobby project that God decided to whip up in his garage 6000 years ago, that is.)

The first part of the human brain that evolved, what many folks call the reptile brain, evolved for one purpose only. To keep us from being eaten. To this day, that part of the brain reacts first, before we can control it. It reacts to the stimulus of fear…any fear…and there is basically nothing we can do about it.

Then the ‘animal’ part of the brain evolved, bringing what we would identify today as ‘social fear,’ the fear of being shunned out of the protective pack or herd and being cast out into the night as individual prey, unloved and on our own. This reactive fear still shapes a huge amount of societal behavior. Are YOU a Real American? Or should the rest of us Real Americans shun you out into the night. Are you one of the pack? Or are you the dreaded “other,” something to be feared?

Only when we get past this level of fear do we get to the fears brought on by abstract thought, the so called rational fears, the fears of the developed cortex. Though in my experience, these fears are mostly just embellishments of our abstract imagination on the same old fears. But our “new” and shiny brains are capable of soaring flights and complexities of fear that can v=be truly amazing. In the course of a few minutes of “thought” we can invent whole worlds and timestreams, entire alternate universes in which all of our truly impressive fears are realized. We do it without even having to think. In fact, not thinking is precisely the condition necessary to create these worlds.

And these are the worlds that Conservatives live in. These worlds are the reason that Conservatives fight against any form of change. Because they fear the future and the catastrophes that their reptile brains are constantly on the lookout for, their animal brains make very personal, and their higher cortex embellish to amazing levels.

These are the worlds the Conservatives insist we join them in. This IS the reason for Conservative politics. When the Conservatives whine about Liberals, it almost always some form of “Can’t you Liberals see this enormous threat???”

You. Have. Got. To. Be. Kidding. Me.

H/t to Huffinfton Post’s “Off the Bus” for finding this one. Here’s Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann at Minnesota Republican 6th Congressional District Debate sponsored by the Taxpayers League, circa November 2005.

I’m speechless. Just completely and utterly speechess.


John McCain: We know you by now …

For ever so long, the energy and environmental community have been working to communicate the dishonesty, truthiness, deceptiveness of John McCain’s claims when it comes to renewable energy and global warming.  Sadly, the McBlurring McSame McCain has worked all too well.  The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) has just released a great video that shines a new light to unblur the situation.


Sarah Palin: GOP Welcomes All Muslims

Amid a growing distrust among her conservative Christian supporters of anything Islamic, Sarah Palin goes on record stating emphatically that Republicans and the McCain-Palin ticket welcome all Muslims, adding “it is not acceptable in my book” to discriminate on the basis of religion. Her message of tolerance comes amid a growing tide of Islamophobia at McCain-Palin presidential rallies in Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio. How Christian fundamentalists interpret her remarks in the last days of the campaign is anyone’s guess.

The wingnuttery going well nuts, and the hypocrisy going well Into Overdrive!!

Men, Women, Brains, Boxes, and Everything

Open Thread


A penny for a spool of Thread,

A penny for a needle-

That’s the way the money goes,

Pop! goes the weasel.

“A Night For Vets”

With other recent news on Veterans and still active Military Personal following this Shout Out for not only Veterans participation but for those not Sacrificing, civilian population, to get more involved with the issues, it’s past your time, that face those who Serve You when serving in our Military and especially after Their Service is over!

Docudharma Times Friday October 24

Alan Greenspan “Regrets” Sending

The Economy Right Into A Blackhole

How Nice

Friday’s Headlines:

Palin appointed friends and donors to key posts in Alaska, records show

Pakistan rejects ‘America’s war’ on extremists

UN report: North Korea clamps down on communication

Election doubts over Ahmadinejad’s health

Israel invites Cat Stevens then tells him ‘stay away’

War declared on mafia as car bomb kills journalist Ivo Pukanic

PM ‘undermined’ Turkey secularism

Robert Mugabe may hang on to rule over corpse of his country



Asian Markets Plummet on Earnings Fears, and Europe Follows


Published: October 24, 2008

HONG KONG – Japan and South Korea led Asian stock markets in steep declines Friday as dismal corporate earnings and economic data underscored the depth of the challenges facing the export-dependent economies in the Asia-Pacific region.

As the Asian markets closed, Europe’s major exchanges opened with declines of around 5 percent. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London fell by 4.9 percent to 3,885.11, the CAC 40 in Paris was down 4.9 at 3,148.78 and in Frankfurt the DAX lost 5.3 percent at 4,279.78. But the declines were not as severe as in Asia where some markets crashed through key levels.

West is in talks on credit to aid poorer nations


By Mark Landler Published: October 24, 2008

WASHINGTON: With the financial crisis engulfing developing countries from Latin America to Central Europe, raising the specter of market panic and even social unrest, Western officials are weighing coordinated action to try to stabilize these economies.

The International Monetary Fund, which is in negotiations with several countries to provide emergency loans, is also working to arrange a large credit line that would allow other countries desperate for foreign capital to borrow dollars, according to several officials.

The list of countries under threat is growing by the day, and now includes such stalwarts of the emerging market as Brazil, South Africa and Turkey. They have become collateral damage in a crisis that began in the American subprime housing market.

The fast-growing economies of the developing world depend on money from Western banks to build factories, buy machinery and export goods to the United States and Europe



AIG Has Used Much of Its $123 Billion Bailout Loan

 By Carol D. Leonnig

Washington Post Staff Writer

Friday, October 24, 2008; Page D01

The troubled insurance giant American International Group already has consumed three-quarters of a federal $123 billion rescue loan, a little more than a month after the government stepped in to save the company from bankruptcy.

AIG has borrowed $90.3 billion from the Federal Reserve’s credit line as of yesterday, the bulk of it to pay off bad bets the company made in guaranteeing other firms’ risky mortgage investments. That’s up from roughly $83 billion AIG had borrowed a week ago, and the $68 billion level it reached a week before that. The news comes as the company’s new chief executive warned Wednesday that the government’s financial lifeline may not be enough to keep AIG afloat.

Greenspan is Shocked! Shocked, I tell you.

Badgered by lawmakers, former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan denied the nation’s economic crisis was his fault on Thursday but conceded the meltdown had revealed a flaw in a lifetime of economic thinking and left him in a “state of shocked disbelief.”

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, describing the current financial crisis as a “once-in-a-century credit tsunami,” acknowledged Thursday that the crisis has exposed flaws in his thinking and in the workings of the free-market system.


Duh, do you think?   Maybe now we can drive a stake through the hearts wallets of the free market, federal reserve, and Alan Greenspan.

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning

Pseudo-random Poem

Art Link


And miles to go…

A flicker of white

appears in the dark

maybe the Big Bang

of some microverse

Perhaps it could be

Tinkerbell’s candle

The color soon dims

through yellow to gold

Then green tendrils spread

out from the center

The sparkling dwindles

to a throbbing pulse

as purple appears

and black and I sleep

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–March 9, 2006

Load more