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Weak Sister

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Published : March 24th, 2014
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Category : Gold and Silver

     Was it such a good thing in the post-cold-war decades that the US was regarded as the supreme sole super-power? Look what we did with that privilege: fumbled around like an overfed stumblebum, blundering from one foreign occupation to another, breaking a lot of things and killing a lot of people — under the clownishly-conceived rubric of a “war on terror.”

     Why is it in our interest which way Ukraine tilts? It has been in the Russian orbit for hundreds of years under one administration or another. Are we disappointed now that Kiev won’t answer to the floundering Eurocrats of Brussels? Was that ever a realistic expectation? Really, the best outcome for western Europe would be a return to the prior condition of Ukraine as a mute bearskin rug with oil and gas pipelines running through it to the oil and gas starved West. The idea that the US could supply Europe with oil and gas instead of Russia is a preposterous fantasy. Anybody wondering whether Ukraine might turn its armed forces loose on Russian forces supposedly massing at its border should ask themselves how Ukrainian soldiers will get paid.

     I’m sure Russia can’t afford to annex all of Ukraine. Russia can barely maintain its paved roads. But it obviously couldn’t afford to give up its rented warm water ports and naval bases in the Crimea, either, with the new Kiev government making so much anti-Russian noise since the “revolution.” The annexation of Crimea changes nothing materially about the disposition of Russian military force in the region. They were already there. Given the size of their navy compared to the other nations in the neighborhood, the Black Sea is Russia’s bathtub and has been as long as anyone can remember. Was the brass at the US State Department shocked to discover this two weeks ago?

     The recognition that there are some places on the planet where the US can’t exert its influence has also come as a shock to the so-called American Deep State — that matrix of bureaucratic toxic sludge that labors to pretend to control everything and succeeds mainly in embarrassing itself in a world that is now deeply tending away from the centralized control of anything. Nations are breaking up everywhere and for the moment there is no coherent public discussion of the ramifications. Venice voted the other day to secede from Italy — that is, to not send anymore tax revenue to Rome. That should be interesting. How about Scotland’s independence vote scheduled for September? Judging by the British newspapers, there is next-to-zero concern about that. Then there is the list of failed states, Egypt, Syria, Yemen, and probably half the manufactured nations of sub-Saharan Africa, places with no viable economy or polity and too many clamoring poor people. These are parts of the world that will neither develop nor redevelop. In a hundred years they could be no-go zones or just return to howling wilderness.

     The US would be better served these days to literally mind its own business. With Detroit in bankruptcy, why would we send Kiev billions of dollars? American urban infrastructures — water, sewer, gas, and electric lines — are falling apart. We have no idea how we’re going to manage most of the crucial economic activities of daily life in ten years, when the illusions of shale gas and shale evaporate in a dark cloud of disenchantment, when we no longer have an airline industry, and most Americans won’t have the means to own automobiles, and there’s not enough diesel fuel to plow Iowa mega-farms, or enough oil and gas based fertilizers or herbicides to pour into the eroding topsoil, and not enough fossil water left in the Oglala aquifer or enough electricity to run the center-pivot sprinklers where the prairie meets the desert? How are Americans going to live and eat and get from Point A to Point B and keep a roof over our heads in this beat-down land?

    We’re having no conversation about these things and the political landscape in this country is a wasteland of mirages and dust devils. That is the true weakness of the USA now. We’re incapable of seeing the disorder in our own house. Why should we even glance overseas at others?

Data and Statistics for these countries : Egypt | Italy | Russia | Syria | Ukraine | Yemen | All
Gold and Silver Prices for these countries : Egypt | Italy | Russia | Syria | Ukraine | Yemen | All
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James Howard Kunstler has worked as a reporter and feature writer for a number of newspapers, and finally as a staff writer for Rolling Stone Magazine. In 1975, he dropped out to write books on a full-time basis. His nonfiction book, "The Long Emergency," describes the changes that American society faces in the 21st century. Discerning an imminent future of protracted socioeconomic crisis, Kunstler foresees the progressive dilapidation of subdivisions and strip malls, the depopulation of the American Southwest, and, amid a world at war over oil, military invasions of the West Coast; when the convulsion subsides, Americans will live in smaller places and eat locally grown food.
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Yes America, who cannot manage its own economy and affairs is busily trying to manage other people's countries.
Mind your own business. You might actually find that success will follow.

As for energy…just what does that term mean? There any many different types.
All the way from Human to Nuclear. Plenty of it…stop wasting it. Harness it better.

Simple…USA problems solved.
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Jim C, strictly speaking you are right that the world isn't about to run out of energy.

It is already running out of cheap energy. The shale phenomenon is smoke and mirrors.
Every barrel of oil has production costs that are rapidly approaching a BOE in money.
Oil will continue to increase in price.
The law of entropy has NOT been suspended.

But if you have the assets, you will always be able to buy oil, potable water or what will become an army of folks eager to sell themselves into indentured servitude to keep food on the table.

We aren't running out of anything in the marketplace. But we are rapidly finding ourselves locked out of the marketplace due to escalating prices and lack of productive jobs with commensurate income.

The problem with belief systems is that they absolutely require complete suppression of dissenting evidence.
And until you can effectively argue either side of a controversy, you don't understand the subject.
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Kunstler, as usual in his articles, is both right and wrong. He's right about the USA needing to mind its own business, spending taxpayer dollars, at the least, for other people's problems. But he's wrong about the world's looming energy shortage:

"We have no idea how we’re going to manage most of the crucial economic activities of daily life in ten years, when the illusions of shale gas and shale evaporate in a dark cloud of disenchantment, when we no longer have an airline industry, and most Americans won’t have the means to own automobiles, and there’s not enough diesel fuel to plow Iowa mega-farms, or enough oil and gas based fertilizers or herbicides to pour into the eroding topsoil, and not enough fossil water left in the Oglala aquifer or enough electricity to run the center-pivot sprinklers where the prairie meets the desert?"

This is buried at the end of his article which is his trademark: he baits with something rational that most can agree on, then throw in his own irrational agenda. That the world will run out of energy is just as irrational as was Thomas Malthus's view that the world would not have the resources to support an extended population. Now if governments, like the Obama one, not only stand in the way of energy development and exploration but actively strive to destroy existing production -- then Kunstler may be right.

However, Malthus was blinded by his ignorance of how technology would cope with the problem. I don't think Kunstler's blindness is one of 'honest' stupidity.
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Yes America, who cannot manage its own economy and affairs is busily trying to manage other people's countries. Mind your own business. You might actually find that success will follow. As for energy…just what does that term mean? There any many differe  Read more
S W. - 3/25/2014 at 7:18 AM GMT
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