November 26, 2009 archive

The Invisible Hand: Too Big to Fail, vs Too Small to Notice

The Invisible Hand

The Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph E. Stiglitz, says: “the reason that the invisible hand often seems invisible is that it is often not there.” [7][8] Stiglitz explains his position:

Adam Smith, the father of modern economics, is often cited as arguing for the “invisible hand” and free markets: firms, in the pursuit of profits, are led, as if by an invisible hand, to do what is best for the world. But unlike his followers, Adam Smith was aware of some of the limitations of free markets, and research since then has further clarified why free markets, by themselves, often do not lead to what is best. As I put it in my new book, Making Globalization Work, the reason that the invisible hand often seems invisible is that it is often not there.

Afternoon Edition

Afternoon Edition is an Open Thread

Now with after nap update and World and U.S. News.  68 Story Final.

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 German military chief quits over Afghan strike

by Simon Sturdee, AFP

1 hr 4 mins ago

BERLIN (AFP) – Germany’s top general quit on Thursday over an air strike in Afghanistan on two fuel tankers hijacked by the Taliban in which dozens of civilians are thought to have perished.

The resignation, announced in parliament by Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg together with that of a senior ministry official, followed press revelations that a military report about the September 4 strike was suppressed.

The news came at an unfortunate time for Chancellor Angela Merkel, as parliament was debating extending the mandate for the German mission in Afghanistan. Even before the air strike it was opposed by a majority of voters.

Thank You Father, Thank You Mother

Without our father and mother we would not exist, I give thanks to them today.

Our father and mother, the father and mother of all and every human being that has ever lived or ever will live are here with us today and everyday, and we thank them. Our father lives 93 million miles away, thankfully! His energy and light bathes our planet, every plant that grows grows because of him. Every microscopic creature, insect, and animal that eats a plant is eating the energy of our father, energy that we call…light.

Light converted into life, with the help of our beautiful and receptive and fertile mother, is converted by a miraculous process into plants. Animals eat those plants and we (their fellow animals) eat them. And thus do we live. And thus are we all made, ultimately, from the same thing, light.


Thanksgiving Chill

This Chill Space is dedicated to my sister.  She had surgery yesterday to remove uterine cancer.  It looks like the cancer hasn’t spread (pending biopsy results on the lymph nodes) and she will be completely cured after this surgery & chemo. This is what I am Thankful for today!  

by OTB

Please join me in observing Buy Nothing Day tomorrow

Is there a tradition any more backward or disgusting practiced across America today than that of Black Friday?  Hordes of consumers mob stores for great deals on useless “goods” like new TVs or Playstations or clothes manufactured by Southeast Asian or Central American children in sweatshops.

We’re in a pretty messed up place politically and environmentally.  Multinational corporations and financial firms pretty much own the government.  Global warming is not only a real and present danger, but rapidly accelerating.  There is a plastic “raft” in the Pacific Ocean bigger than Texas.  And as people we’re constantly being taken advantage of to make this situation last longer so that corporate profits and bonuses can climb even higher than they are now.

The strong link between these two things – our society’s consumerism and the terrible political, social, environmental, and economic situations we’re in – demands action.  By buying things from these corporations and feeding into this model of an economy, we only encourage it.  So I’m asking you:  please join me in buying nothing tomorrow.

Open Mouth


The Giving of Thanks

I hate the Holiday the United States has made our natural harvest celebration into. But I have always though the giving of thanks is one of the things we humans have neglected far too much.

Give thanks to whom, you ask? Sky Daddy, Karma, the Cosmos?

Maybe. Being alive is pretty amazing.

But I’m more into appreciating each other, thanking the people in my world. It just makes the World a better place. You all know how good it feels to be truly appreciated, why do we not want to give that pleasure to others in our lives every day? Complaints are easy, compliments seem harder to us. I guess having death as my closest lifelong companion, losing so many loved ones, makes me feel strident about telling people how much they mean to me before its too late. We speak of a loving society, and I for one, can’t preach that and still be stingy with it personally.

Then, no matter how hard my life is, sometimes I have to stop and think about the fact I have not just one morsel, but more than enough food every day. Most often, another being gave way so that I might sustain. I have clean water. I can see colors, I can hear music, laughter.

I have food also, for my mind and my soul, right here for the taking. I have all of you to thank for that.

Genocidal celebrations suck. But the giving of thanks assuredly does not. Even as we ponder the injustices of it all, every tiny thing done for you should be a reminder of what it is we are fighting for.

We are fighting for more of that for which we can be grateful, for everyone.

Thank you all, I am grateful for you.

Proof our unease with thanks?

See how uncomfortable we get when given thanks or praise. We blush, we squirm, we try and deflect it.

Were it given more often, accepted more often, we would all be happy to smile and say, “You’re welcome!”

And mean the welcomed part. Welcome to any part of my soul that helps yours.

Luladinejad: Brazil and Iran Sign Major Trade Agreements

Brazil and Iran: Welcome To The Luladinejad Axis, Pepe Escobar

As Ahmadinejad was coming from a visit to the Brazilian parliament in Brasilia on Monday, Lula was waiting for him, virtually alone. The embrace by Lula was sudden, spontaneous, extremely warm; it’s fair to assume Ahmadinejad was not expecting it. Those who saw it interpreted it as a graphic message.

Ahmadinejad did mean business: he traveled with 200 Iranian businessmen. In the long run, Brazil wants to export to Iran not only meat, grains and sugar, but also trucks and buses. And Iran wants to invest heavily in the oil industry, petrochemicals, agriculture, minerals and real estate. Lula will visit Iran in March or April 2010, also with a business caravan.

Lula and Ahmadinejad signed agreements on energy, trade and agricultural research in the latest round of what is becoming an increasingly warm embrace between Latin America and the Middle East.

The meat of the matter was, of course, nuclear energy. US President Barack Obama admitted at the Group of 20 gathering in London this year that Lula “is the man” – and opinion polls back him up, with the Brazilian leader at present the world’s most popular political leader, with an approval rating of 79%; Obama has just slipped below 50%. So what is “the man” saying? He’s saying that Brazil supports Iran’s access to “peaceful nuclear energy”.

When Lula talks, world leaders do listen; nor is he shy about running through a roll call of those he “advises” on how to behave with Iran.

“I told Obama, I told [French President Nicolas] Sarkozy, I told [German Chancellor] Angela Merkel that we will not get good things out of Iran if we corner them. You need to create space to talk.” This is not only Lula talking – it’s BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) talk. Carefully balancing his act, Lula at the same time defended the rights of “a safe and secure state of Israel”. read more…

Real News Network – November 25, 2009


Pepe Escobar: How the West could learn from Lula’s way of playing politics

Black Friday-Green Movement Sale!

Docudharma Times Thursday November 26

Thursday’s Headlines:

Businesses in U.S. Brace for New Rules on Emissions

500,000 pager messages from 9/11 published

President vs. party on troop increase

Few mortgages have been permanently modified

A year on from Mumbai terror attack, city is fearful but defiant

Philippines massacre suspect arrested

Israel offers partial halt to West Bank settlement building

Can a Muslim say happy Christmas to his friends?

Sexual abuse by Catholic priests in Ireland was covered up for decades, report says

Journalists freed after year long capitivity in Somalia

Liberia sued by investment funds over 1978 debt

Mexico tightens security at U.S. border crossings

German politicians, media warn about the next global financial crisis

Original article, by Peter Schwarz, via World Socialist Web Site:

Within Germany’s top political circles fear is growing of a second international financial crash exceeding in intensity and impact that of autumn 2008.

Raiders @ Cowboys

Fuck the Cowboys.

Not only are they the division rivals of my team (to the extent I have one.  Week 12?  Seems about time to shift my attention from Baseball.) the Giants, but they are also the most arrogant team in the NFL.

America’s Team?

Fuck you.

I have hopes for an upset since it’s always a pleasure to see the ‘Boys lose but I have no expectations the Raiders can deliver.

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