America added 115 million people from 1965 to 2012. Demographic experts showed 315 million people living in America in January 2012. They expect an added 85 million by 2035 to reach 400 million. The consequences grow irreversible and unsolvable.
As population rises, carrying capacity drops. What is “carrying capacity?” For a quick rendition, it means, “The amount resources on a given piece of land to allow long term sustainable human, plant and animal life.”
If animals or humans exceed ‘carrying capacity’ of any given land mass, they crash in numbers by various means, i.e., famine, war and disease. Garrett Hardin, noted biologist called it, “The Tragedy of the Commons.” (Source:www.GarrettHardinSociety.org)
For the 7.1 billion humans in the 21st century and headed for 10.2 billion in 40 years, oil resources will define that capacity quotient. Noted Geologist Walter Youngquist said, “This is going to be an interesting decade, for the perfect storm is brewing—energy, immigration and oil imports. China grows in direct confrontation for remaining oil. I think the USA is on a big, slippery downhill slope. Will the thin veneer of civilization survive?” To see how fast we grow, visitwww.populationmedia.com
“Cassandra Syndrome”: The Cassandra Syndrome is a term applied to predictions of doom about the future that are not believed, but upon later reflection turn out to be correct. This denotes a psychological tendency among people to disbelieve inescapably bad news, often through denial. The person making the prediction is caught in the dilemma of knowing what is going to happen but not being able to resolve the problem. The origin of the name is derived from Cassandra, who, using her prescience, foresaw the demise of Troy. No one believed her.
Youngquist continued, “Beyond oil, population is the number one problem of the 21st century, for when oil is gone as we know and use it today—and it WILL be gone—population will still be here.”
The world uses 84 million barrels daily. That’s 42 gallons to a drum. By mid century, China, now placing 27,000 new cars on its highways every seven days, expects to burn 98 million barrels of oil daily—all by itself! Oil will run out because of limited reserves in the ground. (Source: The Long Emergency by James Howard Kunsteler)
Dr. Albert Bartlett of the University of Colorado said, “Present population growth rate is putting our children at risk. They will experience holes in the ozone causing serious biological effects on plants and humans. World ocean fisheries are collapsing from endless plundering. Two thirds of the world’s people will suffer from water shortages by 2025. It is not possible to sustain population growth or growth in rates of consumption of resources.”
Where is the worst overpopulation problem on the planet according to Dr. Bartlett? “It’s right here in the United States!”
Dr. Bartlett said, “Can you think of any problem, on any scale, from microscopic to global, whose long-term solution is in any demonstrable way, aided, assisted, or advanced, by having continued population growth—at the local level, the state level, the national level, or globally?”
How many people in the United States are enough? How far down the gopher hole do we want to dig ourselves? At what point is enough—too much? If we shut down the borders today with zero immigration, while enjoying our sustainable 2.03 fertility level of American women on average, we would still grow via “population momentum” by an added 40 million.
In other words, we’re painting ourselves into a perilous corner. Once the numbers manifest, our society will suffer irreversible consequences with unsolvable problems. One visit to Los Angeles will show you they suffer toxic air, dwindling safe drinking water, gridlock to the point of insanity, water shortages, endless highways and housing development. Consider San Francisco, Atlanta, Chicago, New York, Detroit, Denver and all other large cities grow beyond the bounds of reason!
Sustainable growth, slow growth, managed growth, smart growth and all other kinds of growth are oxymoronic. There is no such thing as sustainable growth. Why? All growth exceeds carrying capacity at some point. In other words, the bubble bursts, the dam breaks, the glass spills, the balloon pops and the red-lined engine blows up.
“Population growth is given as a cause of the problems identified, but eliminating the cause is not mentioned as a solution,” Bartlett said. “We are prescribing aspirin for cancer.”
At the current rate of growth driven by immigration, America will double its population just past mid century—from 300,000,000 to 600,000,000. As long as the underlying cause of a problem is not dealt with, we, and our leaders, as a nation, perpetuate a falsehood which Mark Twain called ‘silent-assertion’: “Almost all lies are acts,” he said. “I am speaking of the lie of ‘silent-assertion’. It would not be possible for a humane and intelligent person to invent a rational excuse for slavery; yet you will remember that in the early days of emancipation in the North, agitators got small help from anyone. They could not break the universal stillness that reigned from the pulpit and press all the way down to the bottom of society–the clammy stillness created and maintained by the lie of silent-assertion that there wasn’t anything going on in which intelligent people were interested.
“The conspiracy of the silent-assertion lie is hard at work always and everywhere, and always in the interest of a stupidity (unlimited growth) or sham (unlimited immigration), never in the interest of the respectable (average citizens). It is the most timid and shabby of all lies. The silent-assertion is that nothing is going on which fair and intelligent men and women are aware of and are engaged by their duty to try to stop.”
Silent-assertion worked until it brought China, India and Bangladesh to their knees with sheer misery of numbers. How do I know? I’ve spent a lot of time in Asia and other overpopulated regions. China, even with enforced one child per family, grows by 8 million annually. India, with 1.2 billion, adds 12 million yearly. Bangladesh suffers 157 million people in a landmass the size of Iowa. Do you see anyone racing to immigrate to those havens of human overload?
What I ask is, do we as a nation, want millions upon millions of added people from countries already exceeding their carrying capacity? Legal immigration proves as dangerous as illegal. To think otherwise will allow that silent-assertion to create another China or India in America. Just imagine Iowa with 157 million people and all the rest of the United States with THAT kind of population density!
Albert Einstein said, “The problems in the world today are so enormous they cannot be solved with the level of thinking that created them.”
We are no longer living in the 20th century America with only 75 million people riding horses or trains. We’re in the 21stcentury with cars and jets and 315 million people added to the 7.1 billion on the planet–creating horrific environmental consequences. Again, we had to change our ‘silent-assertion’ about slavery and we MUST change our ‘silent-assertion’ about population growth and economic growth. If we continue steaming full speed ahead like the captain of the Titanic, our children will be on board when we hit the peak oil, global warming, ozone holes, collapsing species, air pollution and other commensurate problems related to the overpopulation “iceberg.” Most died on the Titanic because there weren’t enough life boats.
Maybe some of us choose to maintain our ‘silent-assertion’ in the face of growing consequences, but how can any parent or grandparent be that callous to their children?
Contrary to everything we have been taught, there is no actual United States of America. The U.S. is an occupied territory that could more accurately be described as the Corporate States of America. If the geopolitical states are united, the people are not. We are a nation divided by ideology and by social and economic class. The U.S. is not a democracy and it never was. The systems of power do not allow the voice of working people to be heard or their collective will to be acted upon.
Despite the subterfuge of freedom and democracy, the rights of corporations have consistently superseded the sovereign rights of the individual and those of the community. Labor history and a litany of environmental catastrophes bear this out. For instance, everywhere one looks government agencies, ostensibly created to protect the public welfare, are allowing hydraulic fracturing of Marcellus shale, even when it poisons municipal drinking water and causes incalculable harm to the environment.
Our diverse forests are commodified, measured in board feet to be clear-cut and off-shored at prodigious bargain rates, like a liquidation sale. World class biodiversity is yielding to desertification and monoculture. Money changes hands. The few are getting rich at the expense of the many. The world and the people who live in it are treated like products to be exploited. We are told that nothing is sacred, save for the dollar and markets.
Nevertheless, it is an inescapable fact that no human being, including corporate CEOs and members of Congress, can live without potable water or breathable air. We are literally sacrificing the Earth’s life support systems and mortgaging the future, while attempting to satiate the greed of a few grotesquely wealthy individuals. Through lifelong indoctrination, Americans are persuaded that self-interested greed is in their best interest.
The rich and powerful have decreed that corporate profits, the Holy Grail of American capitalism, are more precious than life itself. The remorseless people in power are without conscience. History confirms that sociopaths do not hesitate to take what they want from their unsuspecting victims by any and all means.
But surely, even among Friedmanites, it must be allowed that some things cannot be commodified or bought and sold. For instance, clean air and potable water are the birthright of every living organism. These are necessities that belong to the commons; they cannot ethically be privately owned. In contrast to this assertion, two edicts of modern capitalism are private ownership and the commodification of workers and nature.
Capitalism, and the market fundamentalism that is associated with it, has stripped bare the Earth’s biodiversity and substituted a world of commodities in its stead. What we see and think we know is not real. It is the product of marketing and perception managers—a hologram.
There is growing conflict between capitalism and the planet’s ecology, its essential life support systems. A fierce struggle between capital and democracy is in progress. The booted foot of capitalism is pressing upon the throat of democracy. We inhabit a dying world and are inheriting dying freedoms. Corporate greed and over-population is the culprit. Conflict is everywhere.
Virtually all of the social upheaval, inequality, and environmental problems of today in some way ensue from capitalism, including overpopulation and armed aggression. Capitalism requires continuous economic expansion and a burgeoning market for consumers. This is simply not possible on a finite planet.
These tensions are manifested no more clearly than throughout the coal belt and mountains of West Virginia, where I make my home. Here, mountains are cleared of forests before being blown to smithereens in order to cheaply extract coal to enrich Massey Energy Corporation. The process, known as mountaintop removal, has poisoned streams, altered their courses, and changed the contours of the land and its hydrology. It has devastated both human and biological communities while filling the coffers of the timber and coal industries.
Conventional underground mining has claimed the lives of thousands of coal miners trying to scratch out a modest living from the Earth. At times, it has led to armed conflict between miners and the Pinkertons hired by the mining companies in places like Matewan and Blair Mountain.
In West Virginia, King Coal and the gas and oil industry run the state’s legislature. The government is effectively owned by corporate lobbyists. As a result, it is futile to make legal and moral appeals to government for redress of our grievances. If we limit ourselves to the tools that our oppressors provide us, the entire region will become a sacrifice zone. Working people and the poor make the sacrifices; billionaires and industry carry off the profit. We are left to deal with the aftermath.
The illusion of democracy, including voting in the absence of meaningful choice, is a poor substitute for direct action and anarchy. Democracy cannot flourish in the sterile soil that capitalism leaves in its wake. Either we have democracy or we have capitalism, or we create something entirely different. Radically opposing ideas cannot be reconciled.
Modern humans inhabit a human-engineered world of absurdities and contradictions. Regardless of the Supreme Court’s assertions, corporations are not people, and money is not speech. Every sentient human being knows this. However, the law says otherwise. We must deny the corporate state that victory by refusing to capitulate.
The struggle for community rights, egalitarianism, and social, economic, and environmental justice must occur outside of the system that creates inequality and fosters wanton destruction of the commons. Countless species of plants and animals that provide essential ecological services are being eliminated to create space for strip malls, gated communities, gambling casinos and golf courses. As a result, ecological and economic catastrophe loom. We are facing global famine in an anthropocentric over-heated world.
Globally, wealthy multi-national corporations are gorging themselves on the biological and mineral wealth of the commons. What could be more absurd or unethical?
The brainchild of Adam Smith, capitalism, which replaced feudalism during the French Revolution, is founded upon demonstrably false premises, many of which were unknown in Smith’s time. Nevertheless, classically-trained economists assert that capitalism is a primal force of nature rather than the defective human construct that it is. Modern capitalism has produced pathological symptoms and endorsed an ethos that is antithetical to life and to liberty. It is killing the world and foreclosing evolutionary possibilities.
Indeed, ethical considerations aside, and speaking purely from a biological perspective, one may emphatically state that modern capitalism is an aggressive cancer that is devouring its host. But most of us are in denial. People like me are asked not to utter the “C” word in public spaces. It might offend the well-intentioned believers. Whenever this occurs I am reminded of Thoreau, who uttered, “Any truth is better than make believe.” One has an ethical obligation to state what one knows succinctly and clearly.
It is not in dispute that the ideology of constant expansion on a finite planet is contradicted by inviolable ecological dictums—among them, carrying capacity, ecological overshoot, and die-off. But classical economists act as if these laws do not apply, or they are mysteriously overridden by the irrational exuberance of capitalism.
In reality, every political economy is underlain by ecology and by living, evolving, biological systems. Ecology is the only economy that really matters.
By possessing even a modest degree of ecological literacy, one can make some revealing predictions with mathematical certainty. For example, the continuation of capitalism as the primary political economy can have one of two possible outcomes: the virtual destruction of the biosphere, meaning the death of the host organism, or the abolition of the capitalist system.
What would a post-capitalism world look like and how might it work?
Global capitalism, with its dependence on the availability of cheap fossil fuels and petrochemicals for food production, must give way to small-scale local economies and organic agriculture. Food must be locally grown and, as far as possible, other necessities locally produced. The age of cheap fossil fuels is ending. Industrialized man must bravely confront his addictions and embrace sobriety or he will self-destruct.
It is said that nature bats last. Humans do best when they emulate natural systems that have evolved over eons of time.
A moneyless economy based upon need must supplant the current profit-driven system of exploitation. Accordingly, goods and services may then be exchanged without the conduit of markets. These exchanges would be of equal value and thus inherently fair.
The classic business models will be replaced by worker-owned and worker-operated cooperatives. In this arrangement, workers—not a board of directors—make all of the business decisions. They share the risks and benefits and distribute the surpluses of production, while significantly reducing the work day and the work week. A portion of the surpluses of production is allocated to the betterment of the community and to the protection of the commons.
New economic models must be predicated upon ecological principles or they will fail. Existing alternatives to capitalism, such as Spain’s Mondragon Worker Cooperative, must be critically analyzed and evaluated as a model that could, with modifications, be implemented elsewhere.
There is no better teacher than evolution and natural selection. History confirms that the most revolutionary ideas are occasionally the oldest. For instance, anthropological studies indicate that early Homo sapiens evolved by implementing egalitarian principles into their tribal clans. People and the cultures they create must either evolve or perish.
The egalitarian societies of the future will look radically different from the capitalism of today. Political campaigns and elections will recede into history and quickly forgotten. Evolved societies do not need leaders or elected officials.
Every member of an egalitarian community is a leader. Power flows in a circular form rather than a linear, top-down hierarchy. It is derived directly from the people. There will be no social or economic stratification. No one shall have privileges or rights that are denied to others. Every member of the community must be equally empowered and equally valued. All people will have equal access to opportunity. Healthcare and higher education, like pure water and clean air, will be regarded as a right of birth and provided without cost.
Direct action will replace voting in political elections. Rather than consent to be governed, sovereign people can create the world they want to live in. In communities where people are empowered and where they have an equal stake, they will want to participate. Everyone brings something to the table. Everyone contributes and all of society benefits.
Communities will become as interconnected and interdependent as ecological systems. But each will remain autonomous within the larger matrix of nature. States and nations as we know them may eventually recede into history and disappear.
Rather than the callous competition and exploitation nurtured by capitalism, communities can be organized around the principle of cooperation and social need. As in healthy ecosystems, the welfare of the individual is dependent upon the well-being of the community—and vice versa. No one will be left behind. All of us shall rise together.
All living organisms share a common origin and a common destiny. Ecology and economy must merge into an integrated natural system suited to long-term survival in a world already ravaged by industrialized man. Ecological and social healing must be part of the process of building sustainable communities.
The transition from capitalism to cooperation will be neither smooth nor easy. There will be many false starts. At first, there will be fierce resistance to revolutionary change. People cling to the familiar and the comfortable, to what they know, even when the dominant paradigm and popular culture does them harm.
The first tentative steps of a journey are often the most difficult. There are no clear blueprints to follow. There will be trepidation and uncertainty. But we must commit to beginning. The alternative is oblivion. But if we embark on the voyage the survival of the species, and a new age of enlightenment will be possible.
On the heels of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), otherwise known as the “Indefinite Detention Act,” comes another draconian bill designed to give the federal government the power to turn American citizens into enemies of the state for virtually any reason it deems necessary. Stephen D. Foster, Jr. has the story.
“Congress is considering HR 3166 and S. 1698 also known as the Enemy Expatriation Act, sponsored by Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Charles Dent (R-PA). This bill would give the US government the power to strip Americans of their citizenship without being convicted of being ‘hostile’ against the United States. In other words, you can be stripped of your nationality for ‘engaging in, or purposefully and materially supporting, hostilities against the United States.’ Legally, the term ‘hostilities’ means any conflict subject to the laws of war but considering the fact that the War on Terror is a little ambiguous and encompassing, any action could be labeled as supporting terrorism.”
Foster goes on to say, “I hope I’m wrong, but it sounds to me like this is a loophole for indefinitely detaining Americans. Once again, you just have to be accused of supporting hostilities which could be defined any way the government sees fit. Then the government can strip your citizenship and apply the indefinite detention section of the NDAA without the benefit of a trial.”
See Foster’s report at:
Ever since Congress passed the Patriot Act back in 2001, it seems the floodgates have been opened for more and more intrusions and abridgements of those fundamental liberties expressly protected in the Bill of Rights. From the Patriot Act, to the Military Commissions Act, to the NDAA (Indefinite Detention Act), and to now the Enemy Expatriation Act (EEA), these big government toadies in Washington, D.C., are clearly and unmistakingly declaring war on the American people.
I invite readers to see my column on the NDAA at:
Have we forgotten the MIAC report out of the State of Missouri back in 2009? In that official State report, supporters of Ron Paul, Bob Barr, and Chuck Baldwin were identified as potential dangerous “militia members,” and Missouri State law enforcement officials were notified to be on guard. Beyond that, anyone that identified themselves as being pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, anti-Federal Reserve, Christians who believe in the return of Christ, and even returning Iraq War veterans were likewise targeted as potentially dangerous to Missouri State law enforcement personnel.
After the MIAC report surfaced, Ron Paul, Bob Barr, and I sent a letter to the governor of Missouri demanding that the report be removed and that the State of Missouri repudiate the report. After a firestorm of outrage by thousands of Americans all over the country (not just in Missouri) the State of Missouri did indeed remove and repudiate the report.
Totalitarian regimes throughout history have attempted to marginalize those people that the state intended to target for persecution. Once a group or groups of people had been sufficiently marginalized, it wasn’t long before public condemnation and then military retaliation took place. Legislation such as the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, the NDAA, and now the EEA authorize military power to be used against US citizens, and given the propensity of government propagandists in the National Press Corps to marginalize groups of people whose ideas are thought to be politically incorrect, it’s only a matter of time before the executive branch of the federal government begins utilizing the dictatorial powers that have been granted to it by Congress. And, unfortunately, many State governments seem more than willing to participate in the Machiavellian machinations put forward by Washington, D.C. The MIAC report in the State of Missouri is a prime example.
Sadder still is the way so many Christian pastors and churches have become little more than glorified cheerleaders for Statism and Militarism. While the Trojan Horse of Big Government sits unnoticed in Town Square, so-called Christians spend most of their time either trying to kill each other because of differences of opinion over secondary doctrines, or trying to turn their worship services into miniature versions of Walt Disney World.
I ask you, did you hear anything from your pastor regarding NDAA? Did you hear anything from your pastor regarding the Patriot Act or the Military Commissions Act? If not, do you really think you will hear him say anything about the EEA? Again I ask you, are not the fundamental principles of liberty as valuable and as scriptural as the so-called “family values” we hear pastors talk so much about? I would argue that without the undergirding foundational principles of liberty (codified in the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights), the so-called “family values” would become moot very quickly! Before Hitler’s government could begin marching people off to concentration camps, it had to destroy the foundational elements of liberty in the hearts and minds of the German people–including German pastors and churches. A government that doesn’t respect your liberty will not respect your life, your family, your religion, or your morality!
At this point, I invite readers to watch my address from last Sunday, January 8, 2012. In this address, I deal forthrightly with the NDAA and show the scriptural instruction regarding how unlawful and illegitimate government is the chief source of “tribulation” that the Bible talks so much about. I also give a scriptural outline as to how Christian people are to relate and respond to government–both good and bad. Watch my Sunday address at:
While we are on the topic of liberty, someone has produced a fascinating clip of Congressman Ron Paul showing the predictions he made on the floor of the US House of Representatives back in 2002–along with the fulfillment of those predictions in subsequent news headlines. People who view this brief You Tube video might just begin to understand why Congressman Paul is the only Presidential candidate who truly understands the causes of this loss of liberty taking place in our land. See Dr. Paul’s speech on the House floor at:
Given the way congressmen and senators from both major parties are willing to grant dictatorial powers to the President, it seems likely that the EEA will pass in much the same way as did the NDAA. It seems to me that the longer we keep expecting Washington, D.C., to solve our problems, the more our problems will increase. Remember the sagacious words of President Ronald Reagan: “Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” Listen to that quote at:
If we are going to “guard and defend” (Daniel Webster) our liberties, it is going to take states and local communities to do it, because those miscreants in Washington, D.C., are doing everything they can to dismantle our liberties, not protect them. We need State governors, lieutenant governors, attorney generals, and sheriffs to stand in the gap NOW! And in that vein, I invite readers to follow the Fanning-Baldwin Montana gubernatorial campaign at the following Facebook and Twitter pages:
In the meantime, beware! The Enemy Expatriation Act is coming soon, and with the way things are going, YOU could be deemed the enemy!
Leading population expert Dr. Jack Alpert, www.skil.org , promotes humanity’s drastic population reductions if our species expects to survive the 21st century.
I sat down with Dr. Alpert as he continues working on his project to educate Americans as to the end game consequences of loading human population beyond carrying capacities. What consequences do we face in this century via exceeding carrying capacity of the planet Dr. Alpert?
“Population matters because the present global population determines your job, home temperature, and diet,” said Alpert. “Global population will determine if you die from old age, exposure, starvation, conflict, or cannibalism. These statements follow from the numbers describing the physical system and their relationship to the number of people in the world.
“The numbers tell us it’s possible to have a 90% die-off of the existing 7 billion people in this century. Why 90%? Because 10% might hold enough dollars and power to disenfranchise the other 90% from their lunch. The resulting chaos and social conflict will speed the consumption of supporting resources, creating more scarcity, more chaos, more anarchy, etc. This causal loop produces a death spiral that ends in civilization collapse. We could be left living in a stone house heated by wood from the back fort, and lit with tallow lamps. we could have a plow pulled by a horse and travel facilitated by the same horse. Forget pharmaceuticals.
“Even if the numbers are complete, you still don’t want to believe it. Predictions of the future are abstractions and their uncertainty leaves room for doubt. So let me call your attention to conditions that already exist. Last week I had a mind opening discussion with David Pimentel (700+ published papers, Cornell University) He a true scholar by almost any criteria.”
- The UN has reported that the number one cause of death in the world is starvation.
- according to the UN and FAO 66% of the world’s population is so malnourished
4.5 billion people cannot fully develop their minds and bodies.
- 2 billion people live on less than 2 dollars a day and a billion on less than a dollar.
“The industrial dream, being able to turn the raw into the produced, and with the profit improve one’s wellbeing is the only thing keeping the malnourished from anarchy,” said Alpert. “The problem is the dream is fading even in countries where it has been successful. For example, college tuition rises faster than salaries. A college education is no guarantee of well paying job. A job is no guarantee of steady income. Fast fading is affordable health insurance, home, and car.
“The optimists believe the bottom half of the 7 billion are experiencing improved wellbeing. If the Chinese factory worker lives better, the system is delivering and our children still have a chance.
“Few of us realize (everyone’s) existence depends on energy slaves — the flow of fossil fuels. The food we purchase in the market is energy based. Energy plowed the ground, created the fertilizer, pumped irrigation water, allowed the harvest, transported the product to the city, processed it, transported it to market, and cooked it. If the price of fuel increases and it surely will, the lowest wage earners many not be adequate to purchase it.
“Billions will not be able to afford lunch and will be on track to starve to death. Urban riots will be inevitable. Cities will be closed to migrants. Migration, met with constraints, means more riots. Civilization declares migrants terrorists. They are driven over boarders into refugee camps where they die or fight with the original residents. This time donations will not prevent conflict. There are just too many in need.
“People fall into two groups, those rising in well-being — the few, and, those with decreasing wellbeing – everyone else. Those who think they are holding their own share an illusion. The losers of well-being hope for a “turn around” that is not coming. When that hope is gone many are just a few missed meals from attacking your grocery store or your pantry. When your grocery store is empty, how are you going to feed your kids even if you have money?
“Defense consumes resources, makes goods and services scarcer, pushes more people toward the margins of society, and creates more chaos. When society collapses it loses the higher production created by work specialization, protected commerce, and economies of scale. These losses result in a loss of technology and all together create in a large die-off.
“This is not a pretty picture of the human condition. We are like big ship at sea with no propulsion to make harbor. The lights are on and the showers are hot on some of the decks. The big nets pull in fish to feed people.
“The ship has raised its population for centuries. But the fuel in the tanks is running out, the thinning fishery makes putting fish on the table more difficult each day. The catch is going to the passengers, who can pay the most. Most are hungry and expectations are that people will starve to death.
“There is no captain, and the market dictates who gets what. When the remaining fuel becomes valuable enough the very rich will eat fully and the very poor will starve to death. Since reproductive choice has been solely the domain of individuals and most do not see the severity of the condition, population on the ship continues to rise. There is no confusion among the people who add and subtract that the production processes (without some unforeseen breakthrough in technology) will feed only a small fraction of the ship’s company.
“There will be less people on the ship in the future, the only difference in the declining population scenario is will most die horrible deaths from starvation and anarchic violence or will some be saved that experience. Will the ship be ruined and sink or will it float? At what level of wellbeing will small ships company maintain? Will the current level of technology and civilization produce goods and services or will technology and civility be lost and production diminished?
“If this ship is a good analogy for earth, we could have 4 billion people perish sometime before 2030 and 2050. And 80 to 99% by end of this century. If there is even a small chance that this is a scenario for our earth, it would be irresponsible to limit any proactive means for lowering our population.
“Obviously, the means we are using to slow population growth educating woman, providing them with birth control, even if vastly more successful and even if fertility dropped below replacement it does not look like the small rate of population decline will prevent a severe die off and civilization collapse.
“Like the ship, the earth has created a huge overshoot condition. It has more people than can be supported with existing resources. With supporting resources declining the degree of overshoot is increasing. The potential for an ever bigger die off is increasing each day.
We need a program of proactive population decline. Two central concepts define these plans.
- A definition of the world’s sustainable “population/civilization” and
- A transition path from where we are to that state.
Everyone wants good ever improving wellbeing. Even more they don’t want to lose ground. Wellbeing is both the physical aspects of life and the difference in those aspects relative to one’s peers. Emotional aspects exist but are not included in this analysis
To define the sustainable “population/civilization,” we have to define:
- global population
- level of wellbeing, and
- level of stratification of that wellbeing,
that could live on our earth, and not deplete the resources that support it or cause the social fabric to disintegrate into chaos and conflict.
Here are three end sustainable “population/civilization”:
- Hunter and gatherer pre agricultural groups, 1-50 million
- 1750 frontier farming groups, 1-2 billion
- our present high tech existence, 30-40 million
If we don’t take some proactive population decline measures I see two destinations from our present course.
The starving and killing may shake out to a 1750′s agriculture based farmstead living groups explained in the introduction 1-2 billion or worse hunter and gather groups something like the plains native Americans. 1-50 million the latter group might rebirth of agriculture but lacking easy to access to coal and other fossil fuels there would be little chance for a progression toward a modern world with technology.
If we can initiate a faster decline in population I have computed a third sustainable population/civilization. It is a high tech, universal highly-educated, high levels of health care, symphony levels of entertainment. The population location is limited to areas where hydro power is abundant and in place. The community is 96% urban, 4% agribusiness, and contains only 30-40 million people in three areas on earth. 6-8 million Pacific Northwest North America — 9-11 million in Brazil, South America, and 13-15 million in China in Asia. There are no other areas on earth according to my initial calculations that will support this third kind of sustainable population/
Now let me discuss various transition paths to these three sustainable “population/civilization conditions. How do we get from our present social organization and 7 billion population down to the number of people that exist in sustainable communities at various levels of wellbeing? In this paper I all focus only on population aspects.
Part 2: I outline these paths below, 1 passive and 2 proactive plans.
Dear reader, yes, this is serious information. You are reading the cutting edge information from one of the top world researchers in Dr. Jack Alpert.
Must see: Rapid Population Decline, seven minute video by Dr. Jack Alpert-
Contact Dr. Jack Alpert at www.skil.org
Before the hype about the forthcoming of the end of the world inundates the ether zone, it is best to examine the paranoia about the paranormal that is prophesied about 2012. One fact is indisputable. No one can prove what will happen until the time comes for the Armageddon finale. That inconvenient detail does not prevent speculators from bringing up all kinds of scenarios and interpretations about expectations. The pervasive drive to forecast the approaching future is perennial throughout all of history. With that said, there is one sure prediction that is rock solid.
Place a bet, with all your cash, that the end of the world will happen in 2012. All you have to do is fine a Jon S. Corzine type to book the wager. Or why become the bookmaker and front such a gamble? You grab all the loot upfront and when the due date passes and the sun still rises in the East, you can go bankrupt like MF Global. If the gaming commission deems it is required to have sufficient guarantees or funding to pay off, all you have to do is plea “too big to fail” and turn over the debt to the Federal Reserve for settlement. Such a play script is not that far removed from the real world. It makes the prospects of an actual total devastation of the planet, far more attractive, than the mental torture of enduring the suffering of interminable hell under the banksters’ matrix.
Conceding to the History Channel devotees, the Maya version of earth shattering shifts in 2012 deserve a short analysis. “Perhaps I should add that most 2012 Mayan predictions seem to be based upon Western interpretation of the calendar and Mayan drawings as opposed to what the Mayans themselves have ever publicly taught throughout history.”On The History Channel, Steve Alten, author of Domain, stated:
The four prior cycles all ended in destruction. So when we talk about the Mayan doomsday prophecy, we’re talking about the end of the fifth cycle, the very last day, which equates to December 21, 2012 (Mayan Doomsday Prophecy, Decoding the Past. Original air date 08/03/06).
Mr. Alten offers his conclusion that seems to be the rational viewpoint.
While I do not believe that the end will come then, I do believe that we are getting close to the time of the destruction of civilization, as we know it.
Even so, what does rational thinking have to do with prophetic prognostication? In the absence of empirical proof and verifiable data, no computer model can demonstrate with certitude the future. Belief however, can and offer does motivate human behavior. It is evident that conditions and events are speeding up at a pace that is hard to comprehend, much less, understand the linkage and ultimate consequences.
Now do not draw from the above assessment that it is imprudent to reject prophecy in all forms. The mere association of seeking the meaning within the term Armageddon possesses biblical propositions of end times. Nevertheless, the essential reality that faces each of us independently and humanity collectively is that we are not in control of the celestial universe. What may or what eventually will happen results in the aftermath of our current perception of existence. Our acceptance of fate is a healthy surrender to the forces beyond out mastery.
While this recognition is sensible, many still want to live in a world of speculation and stargazing. The ELENIN & NIBIRU series on the YouTube atlanticobr channel provides fertile ground for self-indulgence. Pushing the time for the end to a date already past is no reason to criticize the presentations. To the many, what we do not know is preferable to the facts that are already established, and the areas that we actually can effect meaningful change.If the finality of a 2012 AD year has any specific significance, entering into a new Age of Aquarius, would be as distant from current global strife as the light years it takes to exist our Milky Way galaxy.
What is incontestable about the record of human conduct is that the procession of the equinox, continually gravitates toward inhuman conflicts that raise the level of abuse and pain. The gradual incrementalism that was once the pattern is now on a collision trajectory at warp speed. Showers of asteroids or impacts of comets could be seen as a welcome resolution to terminate the absurdity of the political orders that via for total control. No wonder, a planet of the Apes seems preferable to the rule of the international community.Consider the message of a man who was haunted by the incongruity of his fellow human species.
Remembering Kurt Vonnegut’s viewpoint, Maria Popova writes about this work that addresses the subject of war. She concludes from this anthology of posthumous collection of stories:
“But, also as usual, it’s underpinned by an honest hope for humanity’s future, for our capacity to change and better ourselves, which makes Armageddon in Retrospect — and his work in general — as sticky and powerful as it is.”
Roy Blount Jr, in a New York Times item, offers an instance about the resilience of humanity in the continual apocalyptic rush to judgment. Dated May 29, 1945, a letter headed “FROM: Pfc. K. Vonnegut, Jr., TO: Kurt Vonnegut.”
It begins: “Dear people.” It closes: “Love, Kurt – Jr.” It informs his family that he is in an American repatriation camp in Le Havre after having been held prisoner by the German Army. It tells “in précis” how he was captured, transported in a cattle car and “herded … through scalding delousing showers. Many men died from shock in the showers after 10 days of starvation, thirst and exposure. But I didn’t.”
And how he was a captive in Dresden when Allied bombers “killed 250,000 people in 24 hours and destroyed all of Dresden — possibly the world’s most beautiful city. But not me.”
And how his captors put him to work carrying corpses. “Civilians cursed us and threw rocks as we carried bodies to huge funeral pyres.”
Now how can one compare the mere bombing of an ancient city to the destruction of the entire world? Clearly, the former can be said to be a prevented tragedy, while the later is a cosmic natural event. If there is an ethical equation connected with the loss of life from raining bombs from the sky, what is the moral imperative standard that arises from the devastation of the end times?
The Native American Prophecy of the Hopi nation suggests.
“Overall, the theme of Hopi prophecy is that the Earth is going to soon go through a great purification and that humanity can make the decision as to how extreme this purification will be. Their belief is that the world goes through a period of destruction and renewal and that we are about to enter into a new age.”
You do not have to be a protégé of Nostradamus to understand the insanity of the global financial system or the maturations that push factions toward total global war. Nor do you have to be able to translate the double speak quatrains of the power elite to interpret that you are slated to be sacrificed, so that the New World Order can purify itself into a technological global gulag.Armageddon redux is the destiny of the mentally deranged world leaders and their banksters’ master outlaws. 2012 looks like the culmination year on many levels.
Believers in the Book of Revelation await the end of times in order for the fulfillment of the Second Coming. Those who only see the conclusion of this age in cosmic obliteration, have little faith. The parallel to the destruction of the planet Vulcan with its six billion inhabitants may try a Star Trek mind melt explanation to forecast events. However, the better way to describe the risks of the coming year is in terms of the famous Jim Traficant catchphrase, “Beam me up Scotty”. Transport all of us back to reality and concentrate upon the very literal danger of an annihilation global war. The advocacies are not nations against countries, but must be viewed in terms of the Globalist Mattoids vs. the 99.9999% of the rest of us. The minions and enablers of the NWO cabal are all expendable, yet they serve their malevolent masters out of a false sense of duty, utter ignorance or a depraved yearning to be part of the evil empire.
The bible says that Armageddon is actually a battle. The eventuality that this conflict will come to pass is not within our ability to prevent, but we do have the “capacity to change and better ourselves” as Vonnegut believed. Both the atheist and the theists base their conviction on belief. Faith in their beliefs is not proof that they are correct. Nevertheless, the self-destruction tract that humanity is on leads now, cannot have a happy ending.
Look to the stars for your salvation or your destruction if you wish, but resist the oligarchs that are making your life a living hell. Only then will your final gasp of last breath have meaning.
“Come to Cal and study city planning,” my best friend Anne wrote me back in 1966. “President Johnson has just ear-marked hundreds of millions of dollars for urban renewal and for his Great Society, and there will be lots of city planning jobs available to us after we graduate. This is a good way to both help America and also have meaningful jobs.”
Sounded good to me. I’d just finished helping Bill Tatum and Walter Thabit save New York City’s Lower East Side from the bulldozer and I had nothing else to do. Cal, here I come!
Then what happened? I graduated from Cal in 1968 with an MCP — only to be told by perspective employers, “Too bad for you. All the money that had been going to the Great Society is now going to the Vietnam war and most city planning jobs have been eliminated. And besides, we can’t hire you because you’re a woman — we’re only hiring men with families to support.”
It was 1968. I had no money. No job. Nothing to do. So I just lived in a friend’s attic, lived by my wits and sat on the steps in front of Sproul Hall every day for a year after my graduation. For a whole year.
It was a very bad year.
And now it’s deja vu all over again. No job. No money. No hope. All the big hopes that we held for the new millennium in the year 2000 have all been wasted on stupid endless pointless wars on Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Palestine.
So I decided to do the same thing today that I had done back then: Go sit on the steps in front of Sproul Hall. Only this time I’m hoping that it won’t take a whole other year for me to figure out what to do next.
In many ways, the corporatist One Percent just loves our Occupy America movement — because It gives the oligarchs who control us a chance to flex their weaponized muscles, to divide us American peons against each other still further and to characterize people who object to their wealth as dirty, homeless and crazy instead of moral and financial victims of their blatant systematic chicanery.
Nationally, the first thing that we 99% need to do is to eliminate the wide-spread massive corruption that currently characterizes American politics: http://maplight.org/us-
Second, Anyone who has ever had anything major to do with the Federal Reserve should be jailed as well — or tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail. According to the GAO, the Fed just embezzled 16 trillion dollars from us and gave it to Wall Street and big American banks — and to foreign banks too. If that doesn’t totally piss you off, then you need to start checking your pulse.
Third, unjust Supreme Court justices such as Thomas and Scalia should also be jailed immediately. And White House pretty-boy poodles for the One Percent such as Bush, Cheney and Obama should be jailed as well. And Congressional errand-boys for the big corporations? Also clamped in leg-irons! Duh.
Fourth, every single man, woman and child in America should also take turns sitting on Sproul Plaza for a day. And then we should all be awarded free education and/or meaningful jobs. Plus we should also be awarded $30,000 each — as part of America’s new victim compensation plan after having been viciously robbed by corporatist thieves in Washington and Wall Street.
Speaking of bulldozers, U.C. police raided Sproul Plaza again at 3 am last night — driving bulldozers across the plaza, flattening everything in sight, destroying tents and artwork in their wake and pushing people out of their way. No big surprise there.
And speaking of endless war, the Glasgow Sunday Herald’s war correspondent David Pratt just sent me an article entitled “Danger: the Middle East may go Ballistic”.
“In more than two decades of Middle East watching,” stated Pratt, “I’ve got used to unexpected events and endless predictions of doomsday scenarios. But, even by its own politically volatile and labyrinthine standards, there have been some very ominous and shadowy things taking place there of late…. So many factors could now ignite the [Middle East right now], and standing well back would be a near impossible option for the international community. The Middle East might just be about to go ballistic, and I’m not simply talking about a few missiles in Iran.” http://www.heraldscotland.com/
Are we having fun yet?
In 1798, Malthus said, “The power of population is so superior to the power of earth to produce subsistence to humanity that premature death must in some shape or other visit the human race.”
According to the World Health Organization, 18 million human beings die of starvation around the planet annually. That delineates down to 10 million children under 12 and 8 million adults dying of hunger year in and year out. Last week, humanity reached 7 billion on its way toward 10 billion by mid century. Those starvation numbers will accelerate as human numbers grow past the carrying capacity of the land.
The green revolution was instigated as a result of the efforts of Norman Borlaug, who, while accepting the Nobel peace prize in 1970, said: “The green revolution has won a temporary success in man’s war against hunger and deprivation; it has given man a breathing space. If fully implemented, the revolution can provide sufficient food for sustenance during the next three decades. But the frightening power of human reproduction must also be curbed; otherwise the success of the green revolution will be ephemeral only.”
My Australian friend, Mark O’Connor, author of Overloading Australia, gives his rendition of what humanity faces. Please Mr. O’Connor, give readers an understanding of Malthus’ brilliant work:
“There has been a view, much put about by rightwing pro-business think-tanks, that Malthus was a gloomy pessimist from whose story we should learn not to listen to “pessimists,” said O’Connor. “This view is now looking very shaky as famine stalks more and more countries. Journalistic articles are beginning to appear that use as their opening “peg” the remark that Malthus may not have been such a false prophet as we all assume.
“In fact scholars and reputable encyclopedias never did so assume — that claim was wishful thinking by those with their own reasons for wanting to believe population growth is not a problem.
“Just lately there has been much interest in the researcher Alison Bashford’s study of Malthus. She emphasizes the importance of 10 chapters that have traditionally been omitted from reprints of his 1803 Essay on the Principle of Population, and claims the missing chapters show his thinking in a new light. See http://www.abc.net.au/rn/
“I’m not getting too excited about this argument, since the Essay, even in its traditionally abbreviated form, was (for its day) an impressive piece of work. And scholarly information is of limited value in dealing with the propagandists of the growth lobby. When they talk of Malthus, they are not interested in scholarly precision, and not fond of reading his works closely. They have two simple (and quite invalid) arguments that they use; and anyone debating with them needs equally brief refutations to these. I call their two arguments the two-card trick and the three-card trick.”
The two-card trick is a simple two-stage argument (or syllogism):
1. Malthus is the greatest and most famous expert on the supposed dangers of population growth. He prophesied that population growth would lead to famines, which did not come true.
2. Therefore all later warnings, no matter by how many eminent experts, that famines or other disasters due to population growth may happen, or will probably happen (or are already happening) will not come true and should be ignored.
“This is an obviously fallacious argument,” said O’Connor, “One might as well say, “Eminent seismologists have warned of tsunamis that did not occur; therefore no one should heed such warnings”. The logical fallacy, reduced to a syllogism, is of the form: “My horse is grey. Therefore all horses are grey.”
“Of course the cleverer growth lobbyists realize that if they present this argument as a syllogism, its logical flaw will be noted. Their skill is to disguise the logic, and make a great parade of talking about, say, the fruits of historical experience, what we can learn from the case of Malthus, etc.
“In replying to the two-card argument, I always point out the main logical error first. Then I go on to point out a second logical flaw: If in fact Malthus is simply a man who made a spectacular mistake, why are you buttering him up, representing him as pre-eminent in the field, and implying that he is more likely to be right than the modern experts you seek to discredit? Have demographers and agricultural experts learnt nothing since his day? And have there been no improvements in our ability to gather data and to observe global patterns? Would you argue “The founders of modern medicine used to deny the heart pumped blood, so why should I believe my cardiologist?”
“We must alert and organize the world’s people to pressure world leaders to take specific steps to solve the two root causes of our environmental crises – exploding population growth and wasteful consumption of irreplaceable resources. Over-consumption and overpopulation underlie every environmental problem we face today.” Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Oceanographer
“Also, did Malthus in fact prophesy, or merely warn?” said O’Connor. (In which case the first card is as false as the second). “And then, how specific were his predictions of human numbers exceeding food supply, and how often has what he warned about in fact occurred? Would you refuse to believe eye-witness accounts of famines on the grounds that someone once predicted a famine or famines that didn’t occur?
“By the time I’ve run though these points, and then suggested the opposition should apologize for using this misleading argument, they tend to look “tolerably foolish”. But note that it is important to start with the two good-as-gold logical points: that one prophet being wrong doesn’t mean all prophets are wrong, and that if Malthus was simply the false prophet they claim, he would not deserve the pre-eminence they have pretended to give him.
“But if you start instead with the last point, and defend Malthus by saying that he wasn’t necessarily prophesying and wasn’t necessarily wrong, it will sound like you are defending a weak point in your own position. They will then contest your defense of Malthus, and you will find yourself in the glue-pot, since the more you defend Malthus the more you will seem to be conceding their basic (and illogical) contention, that unless Malthus can be exonerated, no subsequent prophesy or even observation of famine should be believed. Target that absurdity first, and then mop up the minor dishonesties at leisure.
“Incidentally, the main reason Malthus’s expectation of continuing famines in the UK (as future population outstripped future food supply) did not come true, is that during and after the Napoleonic wars Britain and France emerged as pre-eminent colonial powers, and proceeded to bleed each other white of young men. They did this via a long series of land battles and sea battles, not to mention the practices of sending troops and bureaucrats to tropical colonies where they died like flies.
“Since in those days single women tended not to have babies, population growth was much reduced. As well, relations with the United States improved, so that even though the US was lost as a colony, it obligingly took off a substantial proportion of the UK’s population (including the Irish who were starving after the potato famine) as emigrants. Further Britain happened to emerge as the dominant colonial power, and with complete control of the seas, and so could afford to import food from other countries — which to this day is the only thing that keeps its bloated population from starving.
“It was not improvements in C19th agriculture that kept up with population growth and prevented the Malthusian famines occurring; it was the combination of death in war, death from colonial diseases, and massive emigration to North America. This unlikely combination of factors was not inevitable, and could not in Malthus’s day have been given a high probability of coming true. But don’t waste your breath explaining all this to those who don’t want to know.”
The three-card trick is a more elaborate version of the two-card. It goes like this:
1. Thomas Malthus was the first or at least the greatest thinker to argue that population growth tends to outgrow food and resources. (Largely true).
2. Malthus was a pessimistic false prophet who prophesied a famine the British never experienced. (Grossly unfair, as any good encyclopedia article on Malthus will show. If that was all he was, he would not be the most famous thinker on the subject, and the three-card trick would collapse at this point. In fact Malthus did not claim to know the future, and he did not so much predict a future famine as provide an intelligent account of existing famines — and of reasons they were likely to recur.)
3. Therefore those warning of famine today are minor Malthuses, and even less worthy of respect. (Note that even if the second card was valid, the conclusion would still be clearly invalid.)
“In the debate-book on population that I am currently (late 2011) writing for Pantera Press, called Big Australia Yes/No?, my opponents are two “fellows” from the rightwing Centre for Independent Studies. Their beguilingly gentle version of the three-card trick begins: Thomas Malthus, an early 19th century English philosopher, famously said that unchecked population growth would lead to worldwide famine and disaster. Two hundred years later, entrepreneur Dick Smith is running a similar line.”
“In a brief right of reply, my comment, which may or may not survive the editing and compression process, is that they may have been innocently misled into repeating this nonsense, but they should now distance themselves from it, and apologize. World hunger is not an issue to dismiss with such glibness.”
“The raging monster upon the land is population growth. In its presence, sustainability is but a fragile theoretical construct. To say, as many do, that the difficulties of nations are not due to people, but to poor ideology and land-use management is sophistic.” Harvard scholar and biologist E.O. Wilson
Truth be told, some foreign observers, and certainly this one, having been based in Tripoli the past nearly eight weeks, have not taken very seriously occasional media predictions that Tripoli might soon be invaded by “NATO rebels” — though not by NATO country forces putting their boots on the ground.
The reasons include observations that the Libyan population is increasingly expressing anger over members of their families and tribes being killed by NATO sorties claiming to be “protecting civilians.”
It is said by many here that tens of thousands are ready to repulse invaders who try to enter Tripoli. Support for Colonel Kaddafi appears to reflect even Western polls such as the one referred to by the UK Guardian recently that Libya’s leader Colonel Gadaffi’s popularity had perhaps doubled during the current conflict. This morning’s Rasmussen poll claims that support for NATO-US involvement has plummeted to just 20 per cent among the American public due to among other reasons, NATO killing of civilians. It is even lower in several other NATO countries.
Until quite recently, life appeared fairly normal except for the scarcity of benzene for vehicles and some luxury food items and also some necessities such as baby formula, some medicines and reliable phone service. Earlier piles of household trash that began accumulating at some street corners around Tripoli in early March when up to 400,000 foreign workers fled West to Tunisia and East to Egypt began being cleared a couple of weeks ago as the municipality of Tripoli reorganized its severely and instantly depleted work force.
Except for the recent increase in NATO bombing sorties Tripoli has been a fairly pleasant place to be.
On 8/17/11 things abruptly changed and no one knows for sure in which direction daily life is now headed. Starting just before noon, much, if not most of Tripoli was without power. At my hotel, one of only two in Tripoli with even sporadic Internet these days (even though parts of Tripoli regularly experiences South Beirut Lebanon type sudden cuts that can last for hours or days) the services abruptly stopped for all staff and guests. Initially some guests were stuck in the elevator and a few appeared to panic. Our hotel rooms, which for security reasons have windows which don’t open began to heat up fast, laptop batteries quickly died, the weak Internet vanished, and this observer, like others, was faced with the prospect of walking down and up eighteen floors to keep appointments in the street level reception area. Two of my Libyan friends, who work in one of the hotel restaurants called my room to ask me if I wanted them to walk up some lunch. Profoundly touched by their thoughtfulness which seems typical of Libyans, I reminded them that I was fasting for Ramadan and in any case would not think of accepting their kind offer. Not long after the hotel emergency generator kicked in and the elevator began working but no power anywhere else inside the hotel.
At nearby Green Square, crowds began to gather by 2 p.m. and rally against “NATO rebels” and I was told thousands of Libyan citizens were ready to move to the edges of town, man check points, and support army units and repulse any advances from Al Zawieh to the West, Gheryan and several villages from the South or Brega and closer villages from the East.
Prices at the local “Medina” ( street market covering several blocks selling a large variety of goods and vegetables) adjacent to my hotel jumped up again according to two sisters who have become my friends and who shop with their mother every morning in preparation for cooking the daily ‘Iftar” meal which breaks the Ramadan fast at sunset. Over the past six months basic food prices have largely leveled off under government warnings to merchants not to even dream about trying to price gouge.
Some people are leaving Tripoli but it’s hard to estimate how many. Most people I have asked say they will stay and they do not think “NATO rebels” can enter this well-armed and apparently well-organized city of still around 1.5 million people.
A delayed UN fact finding delegation, led by a spectacular Palestinian woman from Nazareth in occupied Palestine named “Juliette”, finally arrived by plane after the UN demanded NATO allow their plane to land at Tripoli airport. The UN group, staying at our hotel, had been blocked from the main road between Tripoli and Tunisia. As of the morning of August 18, people are trapped in Tripoli from departing to Tunisia and no one is entering from Tunisia.
Libyan students at Tripoli’s Al Fatah University and even some government officials have told this observer that they have vowed to dig in and wage a “Stalingrad Defense” of Tripoli against the advancing “NATO rebels.” Certainly the neighborhoods are very heavily armed.
Some, including this observer, lack the heart to remind these dear students that at Stalingrad, the Russian citizens were holding out for the arrival of the Red Army that did indeed save many of them in the end. One does not sense that a Red Army is en route to lift the threatened siege of Tripoli. But maybe Tripoli’s defenders will not need a Red Army to lift a siege of Tripoli.
This week, a Libyan law student who for weeks has been helping man a neighborhood defense committee checkpoint near Airport Road left me the following note:
“Franklin, you asked me how we will defend our capitol Tripoli if NATO bombs a path so rebel forces can arrive here and try to enter our neighborhoods. We discuss this often among ourselves during the night. This is what we have to say to answer your question.
“It is not private information that our defense will be from every buildings on every main street, square or roundabout. We can and will keep for as long as possible every meter that NATO forces try to take. Every apartment building, factory, warehouse, street corner, intersection, home or office building is waiting and supplied with guns of different types, RPGs and mortars. Snipers and specially trained small 5-6 man units are ready. Our defense will be a house to house battle. From every floor and from hole in the floor we will fight NATO rebels. Also from the sewers we will fight and every basement. If NATO enters a front door we will fight them for every room in the house and from the piles of debris created from them bombing us.
“Dear friend Lamb. Libyans are a good and a proud people. You and I have spoken about Omar Muktar and our defeat of the Italians that cost us more than one-third of our relatives who fell in battle. Do you know my friend that during the Ottoman Empire centuries of colonization which was the only Arab or Muslim country to rebel again them? It was Libya. Only Libya. Led by her tribes. We stood up against the Turks and fought two 20 year wars against them. Do NATO and Obama believe they can defeat us? Your friend, Mohammad.”
In 2011, so far gold has been the champion investment above and beyond any contender, including stocks and equities. At the announcement of the S&P downgrade of America’s credit rating, only gold showcased immunity. In fact, gold has thrived (as we predicted) in the face of any potential economic threat, from deflation in stocks, to inflation of fiat currencies. Some may wonder, though, where silver has been while its big brother is flexing its investment muscle?While traditionally, silver tends to follow market surges in gold, the past eight months have been rather confusing for the cheaper metal. Admittedly, silver has performed far beyond the predictions of slow witted mainstream skeptics, but it still has not come anywhere near its true potential, especially in light of gold’s incredible strides. Many may be wondering how it was possible for gold to stampede into the $1800 an ounce range after the downgrade while silver stayed completely static at around $40 an ounce. The behavior of commodities markets has been, indeed, very strange…
The common assertion by MSM pundits is that because silver has a larger industrial market than gold, silver is affected more negatively when stocks decline. This is absurd logic. Silver is still very much an alternative currency and just as much a hedge against market instability as gold is. All told, silver should actually be MORE apt to increase during economic uncertainty than gold, because of its wider industrial usage and subsequent decreasing supply. The “utility argument” for decreasing silver values just doesn’t fly.
As many are well aware, silver is a much smaller market than gold, with fewer primary players in control of tighter trade. Most of us are also well aware that one of these players, JP Morgan Chase, was exposed as a massive silver manipulator in 2010 by commodities trader Andrew Maguire. Gold and silver investors have been demanding a Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) investigation of such manipulation for decades. These demands fell on deaf ears, and claimants were quickly disregarded as “conspiracy theorists”. Issuers of ETFs (paper silver or gold) have long circulated silver equities supposedly backed by real metal, but when investors began to notice that the amount of paper issued far surpassed the amount of real silver in actual circulation, the scale of the manipulation in progress became quite clear.Global banks were purposely driving down the value of silver by creating the illusion that there is a greater silver supply than there actually is. JP Morgan has also been caught red handed initiating coordinated naked short selling of silver equities as a way to fool average investors into believing that demand for the metal is falling.
With the Maguire revelation, the hope was that the CFTC would finally do their job and take market manipulation seriously. So far, they have not. Maguire’s evidence and testimony have been ignored, investigations were limited to a few pointless committee hearings, and the global bank ETF fraud continues.
Another snake in the grass when it comes to precious metals investment is the COMEX itself.The COMEX is not a free market by any means of the term. It is in fact a highly micromanaged exchange owned and operated by an organization called the CME Group based out of Chicago.CME is the preeminent hand in the flow of trade in all commodities (at least until recently). Their main method for stifling the rise in metals is the use of “margin hikes”. Buying silver equities “on margin” allows investors to borrow capital from a company with a certain percentage of their own cash as collateral, in order to get more silver than they would using their personal funds alone. When the silver margin sits at 50%, for example, an investor with $10,000 can borrow from the company to buy $20,000 worth of securities (ETFs). However, if the CME increases the margin from 50% to 75%, that investor will have to quickly increase his collateral by 25% or lower his silver holdings. CME has the ability to make these changes at will, and such margin hikes have the ability to trigger massive sell-offs in metals, especially silver. In May of this year, as silver edged towards $50 an ounce, CME hiked margins four times! Three times in the span of only seven days! Investors scrambled to unload their ETF’s, which they could no longer afford to collateralize, and silver’s price plummeted to around $30 an ounce.
The CME (and the idiots who defend the CME) often claim that they must raise margins aggressively in order to offset market volatility caused by “speculators”. Strangely, though, there was NO VOLATILITY in silver markets in May. Not until the CME actually increased margins, creating an engineered dump of equities. This forced reduction in silver prices also greatly benefits consistent short selling manipulators like JP Morgan and HSBC, but that’s just a coincidence, I’m sure.
Obviously, someone out there does not like the idea of silver crossing the historic $50 an ounce mark…
So, the next logical question is; how long will this manipulation go on, and how can we fight back? The keys to the end of commodities manipulation may already be in play, while methods for combating centralized control of metals are increasing. Here’s why…
China Competes With The Comex
As of this summer China now has its own Comex, called the Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange.The exchange opened for trade on May 18th (the CME’s incredible margin hikes in silver began only weeks before, which suggests to me that they were trying to preempt the positive effects the HKMEX would have on metals). The HKMEX moved into action only five months after the Chinese Pan American Gold Exchange was instituted. The exchange issues its own ETF’s in gold and silver. These securities, though, are not based on leverage or derivatives like most Comex based ETFs. The bottom line; the Comex global monopoly on commodities trade is over:
This would explain gold’s unstoppable expansion into the $1800 range, and how silver was able to climb back after the CME’s brutal margin manipulation into the $40 range. Only last week, the CME issued a margin hike on gold of 22%. Despite this the fall in gold was minimal, showing that their influence, though vast, is beginning to wane. With competition, manipulation becomes more difficult, and room for growth is created.
The new Hong Kong Exchange coupled with the now explosive buying of physical PM’s by Chinese consumers is slowly but surely overriding the long prevailing manipulations of corporate robber barons intent on ensuring gold and silver are never treated as a currency alternative to the dollar. Silver markets in the East were set into motion a bit more slowly than gold markets were, but given a little more time, I suspect that the resultant spike in silver prices will be the same.
Global Silver Investment Growing
World investment in silver rose by an impressive 40% in 2010 and industrial use increased by 12%, while global supply from mining production only increased by 5%. Growth of demand severely outweighs the growth of supply. After the opening of the HKMEX, China rushed into silver markets. The CME margin hikes that caused the substantial drop in silver spot price in May only served to create a buying opportunity for those investors smart enough to see the writing on the wall. After the S&P downgrade of the U.S. AAA credit rating, silver values did not skyrocket like gold’s, but in the face of extensive manipulation attempts by the CME and major banks, silver’s steadfast hold to its current prices says quite a bit about is resiliency.
One very important factor to consider is that silver is the common man’s currency, and has been for thousands of years. Both gold and silver are solid hedges against financial crisis, especially inflation. However, silver retains more accessibility. As gold continues its climb into the thousands of dollars per ounce, silver will become more appealing to those of us who want to protect our savings, but can’t afford gold. Being that the economic crisis we currently face is unfolding in almost every nation, the demand for a safe haven will increase exponentially. It is only a matter of time before silver is engulfed by an enormous surge of buyers.
With the Federal Reserve continuing to print progressively devaluing dollars, the European Central Bank announcing its own TARP measures, and China in the midst of a full-on inflationary battle royale, national currencies are undoubtedly losing market favor. Gold’s price will soon become unreachable for common people, but silver will be there to fill the void.
How To Break The Barrier
Methods for smaller investors to fight back against the market manipulations of large banks have been sparse, and often limited to desperate appeals to the CFTC and the government, who are bought and paid for, and who have no intention of ever stopping global financiers from dragging their unwashed behinds across the face of the planet. Relying on bureaucrats to mend the wounds they themselves encouraged or inflicted is foolhardy, to say the least. Top down solutions are NOT an option now, and I’m not sure if they ever were. This leaves us with only one other choice; to fix the problem with our own hands from the bottom up. This is, of course, easier said than done…
In the case of silver manipulation, what we are faced with is an unprecedented effort to subvert and suppress an alternative system so that the mainstream system can continue to assert control over our financial lives. To effectively confront this issue, we must first end our reliance of the mainstream system. The longer we continue to participate in the fraud, the longer it will go on. Here are just a few strategies for decoupling, and walking away from the rigged game…
1) End The ETF Casino: If you play the ETF lottery, for god sakes, STOP! You are only perpetuating the con-game that is paper silver. While the allure of speed of light silver trade can be overwhelming, the bottom line is that even though you may think you have the market right where you want it, you don’t. ETFs are an amazing rip off. Trade fees can nickel and dime smaller traders to death. ETFs being held, even without trade, lose value through numerous surcharges as companies nibble away at your holdings. Most ETFs also will NOT allow you to take physical delivery of silver when cashing out your equities unless you have extensive holdings, and even then, it may take months for the silver to reach your doorstep. Because banks issue ETFs for silver they don’t actually have, they would never allow you to exchange them for physical if they can help it. Otherwise, the scam would be exposed, and they would be out of business.
Playing the margins is shear stupidity when you realize that global banks are hell bent on suppressing silver values. There is no rhyme or reason to silver ETFs and margin hikes beyond the whims of corporate puppeteers. Mainstream analysts can pretend as if there is a hard science to this brand of investment, but in reality, it is a large and very expensive joke.Unless you have a crystal ball, your only other tactic for discerning when to sell is pure luck. The very idea of the CME being able to control the price of physical by hiking the margins of paper securities that represent silver that doesn’t even exist is a farce beyond reckoning.
Buy physical, not paper. Be a part of the solution, not part of the problem.
2) Vault Storage Depositories: If you aren’t a buy and hold investor, and insist on participating in short term selling strategies, there is an effective (and smarter) alternative to ETFs and the fake paper market. Silver and gold vault storage depositories allow you to buy and store large quantities of physical metal while having the option of liquidating your holdings for cash just as quickly as if you were selling ETFs. Depositories do not charge hidden fees and do not reduce your silver holdings while they are in the vault. What you put in is what you get back. Period.
Because your silver is already sitting in their vault, a mere phone call allows you to liquidate a portion or all of your stock into cash whenever you wish, just like ETFs, but without the fraud. On top of this, depositories will deliver any or all of your silver or gold on demand to your doorstep, usually within 48 hours. If a sizable number of silver investors switched from ETFs to vault depositories, the ETF market would crumble, and market manipulation would end.
3) Encourage Physical Trade: Max Keiser’s ‘Crash JP Morgan’ campaign was an excellent first step in encouraging silver investment by showing average Americans that they can hurt the big banks simply by purchasing something they don’t want you to have. The next logical step would be to, of course, encourage larger ETF investors to demand physical delivery on their holdings by showing them the folly of the market itself, and, to encourage average investors to actually utilize the silver they buy not just to crash the banks, but for organized trade.
The construction of silver based barter markets must become a priority. Owning silver is not enough. We must start to use it in place of dollars if we are to have any control over our own economy. Barter efforts like this are becoming much more common, but we are still a far cry from full scale utilization of alternative currencies. With the implosion of
the dollar, it will only be a matter of time before metals take primacy as a means of trade, so why not get a head start now? Eventually, the increased circulation of physical will allow the free market to determine the natural value of silver and gold, instead of the subjugated paper market, until finally, the mainstream spot price is completely irrelevant.
4) Offer Incentives: For business owners or for those who are involved in private barter, offering incentives to those who pay in physical would encourage more silver investment, and by extension, more silver circulation as a currency. Add a certain percentage above spot price for silver trade, or, offer a discount on goods or services to those who pay in silver. Businesses, for that matter, could very well give their employees the option of being paid in silver, completing the currency circle and the flow of commerce. The more silver is used day to day, the harder it is for banks to control, and the more its value will rise.
All economies larger than a small village need a unit of trade beyond the barter of goods and services. They also need a unit of trade that maintains its value and buying power, instead of devaluing, inflating, and destroying the savings of those who hold it. Precious metals are the only existing option that can take on this role, and silver is the most attainable for average people. There is a reason why MSM analysts and establishment economists have been trying to crush interest in PM’s for years. There is a reason why global banks have gone out of their way to suppress the market values of metals. The second Americans realize there are other choices, other systems for living and working beyond the controlled paradigm we have been handed, the illusion slips away, and centralization becomes a memory. This is true for all aspects of economic structure, social structure, and political structure, not just for silver or gold.Ultimately, though, we have to start somewhere, and silver is as good a place as any.
You can contact Brandon Smith at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lady Gaga’s “Judas” video is a modern retelling of biblical stories, where Jesus and his disciples are portrayed as a biker gang. But don’t mistake the video for a Bible lesson as it twists and turns important scenes to give them a very different meaning. In fact, it can be argued that the video symbolically describes an important aspect of Gaga’s work and of society in general: a rejection of Christianity in order to make way to what has been called the Age of Horus. This article will look at the origins and the symbols found in Lady Gaga’s “Judas”.
When I first watched Judas, I immediately told myself: “There is no use to write about this, it is simply too obvious”. I mean Gaga is in love with Judas … and Judas betrayed Jesus. It is a direct continuation of Gaga’s anti-Christian and pro-Illuminati theme through symbols, as described in previous articles. What can I add to it that hasn’t been said? So I ignored the video … until I began receiving e-mails. Tons of them. Many people did not understand the message of the video, some did not get the Biblical references and the way they were twisted to communicate a new message; other simply did not know who Judas was. As it is symbolic on many levels, I realized that decoding this video could help many readers — who I call my “Little Vigis” (No.). The video doesn’t only summarize the underlying spiritual message found in Gaga’s work, but it describes an important phenomenon happening in society in general – a phenomenon that is part of the Illuminati agenda: the “de-holyfication” of traditional religions.
In her recent interviews, Gaga has given several interpretations of the song. In an interview with E! Online she said that it was not meant as an attack of Christianity:
“I don’t view the video as a religious statement, I view it as social statement. I view it as a cultural statement.”
On Amp Radio Gaga explained that:
“It’s about falling in love with the wrong man over and over again.”
In another interview with Google, Gaga went deeper into the philosophical theme of the song, which is in accordance with the teachings of some occult schools we’ll describe later.
“The song is about honoring your darkness in order to bring yourself into the light. You have to look into what’s haunting you and need to learn to forgive yourself in order to move on.”
The videos for Gaga’s songs Alejandro (analyzed here) and Born This Way (analyzed here) communicated specific spiritual messages through meanings and symbols. Traditional religious symbols are stripped of their “holy aura” while other symbols, inspired by those of the Illuminati, are introduced and glorified to her young viewers. Of course, this phenomenon does not happen only in Gaga’s works, but is a trend in mass media in general. Aleister Crowley, an occultist who remains an incredibly influential figure in the entertainment industry, claimed the Age of Horus, a new stage in human history, would be defined by the abandonment of traditional religions in order to embrace a new kind of spirituality (read the full article on Crowley here). The same vision for a “new Aeon” is shared by the world elite, where its plans for a New World Order heavily rely on the existence of a single world religion, based on a specific set of values that are compatible with is Agenda. Mass media plays an important role in this paradigm shift – and the results are astonishing. In less than a century, the Western World has witnessed a drastic decline in religious faith, especially Christian. Never such a profound societal change happened in such a short period of time. Of course, Gaga herself is not responsible for this drastic shift, but Judas, in its meaning and symbolism, perfectly describes the transitional period we are going through, as society is taken to, in Crowley’s words, the Age of Horus.
It is therefore in this social and religious context that Judas was released. First seen riding with Jesus, Gaga goes into a transition and falls for Judas, the man who ultimately caused the death of Jesus. Gaga’s conversion is symbolic of society in general, where the altruistic tenets of Christianity have been replaced by a more “self-celebrating” philosophy – embodied in the video by the character of Judas. In short, the story symbolizes the passage towards Crowley’s Age of Horus, and Gaga’s “Eye of Horus” makeup effectively seems to emphasize this point. As seen in previous articles, Gaga is no stranger to Crowley’ philosophy (her Manifesto at the beginning ofBorn This Way is heavily inspired by his Thelema). This philosophy is, in turn, the basis of the new kind of spirituality that is sold to the masses through media.
To explain Judas, I need to “get Biblical” because the song and the video are heavily inspired by Biblical verses. So, before we get into it, let’s start by understanding the main character: Judas.
Who was Judas?
Judas Iscariot was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples. Due to his money-management skills, he was put in charge of the group’s money box. Despite having chosen him to become his follower, Jesus knew from the start that Judas would eventually betray him. At one point he even refers to him as “the devil”.
70 Jesus replied, “Didn’t I choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is the devil?” 71 (Now he said this about Judas son of Simon Iscariot, for Judas, one of the twelve, was going to betray him.)
- John 6:70-71
During his time as a disciple, Judas had some “issues” with Jesus, causing him to stir up trouble within the group. An important event involving Judas happened during the washing of Jesus’ feet by Mary Magdalene using expensive ointments. Offended by what he called a waste of money, Judas protested and even caused other disciples complain. This is one of the Biblical passages that was recreated (with a significant twist) in Gaga’s video:
12:1 Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom he had raised from the dead. 2 So they prepared a dinner for Jesus there. Martha was serving, and Lazarus was among those present at the table with him. 3 Then Mary took three quarters of a pound of expensive aromatic oil from pure nard and anointed the feet of Jesus. She then wiped his feet dry with her hair. (Now the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfumed oil.) 4 But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (the one who was going to betray him) said, 5“Why wasn’t this oil sold for three hundred silver coins and the money given to the poor?” 6 (Now Judas said this not because he was concerned about the poor, but because he was a thief. As keeper of the money box, he used to steal what was put into it.) 7 So Jesus said, “Leave her alone. She has kept it for the day of my burial. 8 For you will always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me!”
- John 12:1-8
Shortly after this incident, Judas meets with the chief priests of Israel – the ones who were trying to “bring down” Jesus – and strikes a deal. He would betray and hand over Jesus to the Pharisees and the police force in exchange for thirty silver coins:
26:14 Then one of the twelve, the one named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 and said, “What will you give me to betray him into your hands?” So they set out thirty silver coins for him.
- Matthew 26:14-15
During the Last Supper, Jesus tells his disciples that one of them would betray him and reveals it would be Judas:
13:21 When he had said these things, Jesus was greatly distressed in spirit, and testified, “I tell you the solemn truth, one of you will betray me.” 22 The disciples began to look at one another, worried and perplexed to know which of them he was talking about. 23 One of his disciples, the one Jesus loved, was at the table to the right of Jesus in a place of honor. 24 So Simon Peter gestured to this disciple to ask Jesus who it was he was referring to. 25 Then the disciple whom Jesus loved leaned back against Jesus’ chest and asked him, “Lord, who is it?” 26Jesus replied, “It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread after I have dipped it in the dish.” Then he dipped the piece of bread in the dish and gave it to Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son.
- John 13:21-26
At this moment, it is said that Satan possessed Judas:
13:27 And after Judas took the piece of bread, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, “What you are about to do, do quickly.”
- John 13:27
Judas then leads the chief priests and the police to Jesus, identifying him with a kiss:
14:43 Right away, while Jesus was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived. With him came a crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent by the chief priests and experts in the law and elders. 44 (Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I kiss is the man. Arrest him and lead him away under guard.”) 45 When Judas arrived, he went up to Jesus immediately and said, “Rabbi!” and kissed him. 46 Then they took hold of him and arrested him.
- Mark 14:43-46
After Jesus’ condemnation, Judas regretted his betrayal and sought to reverse his actions by returning the money, but it was too late and he commits suicide:
27:3 Now when Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus had been condemned, he regretted what he had done and returned the thirty silver coins to the chief priests and the elders, 4 saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood!” But they said, “What is that to us? You take care of it yourself!” 5 So Judas threw the silver coins into the temple and left. Then he went out and hanged himself.
- Matthew 27:3-5
Most of the passages described above are recreated in the video, but they are given a twist, where roles and symbols are reversed, effectively changing the fundamental meaning of the Biblical stories. As a result, the video ends with a very different “moral of the story”.
Gaga as Mary Magdalene
The video portrays Jesus and his disciples as a biker gang riding around with skull-and-bone insignias on their backs (nice touch). Gaga is riding with Jesus, playing the role of Mary Magdalene.
Although it is not clearly specified in the Bible, Mary Magdalene is said to be the prostitute who was about to get stoned to death by an angry mob until Jesus came along and said: “Y’all country-ass, donkey-riding peasants better drop them rocks and go on home before things get REAL ugly up in here”. Wait, that’s what Samuel L. Jackson would have said. Jesus actually said: “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.
At the very end of Judas, Gaga is seen stoned to death, insinuating that Jesus was not there to save her.
So Gaga plays the role of Mary Magdalene where Magdalene is not only the friend and disciple of Jesus, but his lover. This portrayal of Mary Magdalene as Jesus’ mate became popular in the past few decades with books such as The Jesus Scroll (1972), Holy Blood, Holy Grail (1982), The Gospel According to Jesus Christ (1991), The Da Vinci Code (2003), The Two Marys: The Hidden History of the Mother and Wife of Jesus (2007); and by films like Bloodline (2008). These alternative accounts on Jesus Christ’s life originate from modern interpretations of Gnostic and apocryphal texts (mainly the Nag Hammadi) where Magdalene is described as Jesus’ “favorite disciple” and “companion”. An interpretation of the apocryphal Gospel of Philip even alludes to Jesus “often kissing Mary Magdalene on the lips”.
Some occult circles believe that Jesus lived well beyond the age of 33 (a number they believed was selected for symbolic reasons). Some claim that Jesus married Mary Magdalene with whom he had a daughter named Sarah. Some even claimed that they moved to Southern France, where they started the fabled Merovingian Bloodline.
Judas therefore portrays Mary Magdalene from this angle, where Gaga is the wife of Jesus. However, she only has eyes for Judas.
The video begins with Gaga riding with Jesus, yelling in his ear “Judas Juda-ah-as”, almost as if it was an incantation. Usually, when your girl yells the name of some other dude right in your ear, it means something’s up.
From a spiritual point of view, Gaga was “riding with Jesus” – representing the embrace of Christianity – until she fell in love with Judas – a force that is opposed to it. But what kind of force are we referring to? Is it the elite’s peculiar brand of occultism, mainly represented by the symbol of the Eye of Horus?
In the video, Jesus is shown doing good deeds and healing people while Judas is pretty much a douche bag, getting drunk and grabbing women all over the place. Yet Gaga is in love with him. The character of Judas is an embodiment of Crowley’s saying “Do What Thou Wilt” – or Lavey’s Church of Satan concept of hyper-egoism, where the fulfillment of one’s desires is seen as a basic requirement to true enlightenment. Gaga is seduced by and identifies with the values embodied by Judas’ and is therefore in love with him. By doing so, she turns her back on Jesus’ altruism and selflessness.
One scene recreates Mary Magdalene’s washing of Jesus feet which, as seen above, made Judas angry and jealous. In the video’s version of the story, Judas is however right there with Jesus, his naked feet next to his, apparently also ready to get this treatment reserved for great people. Judas is therefore not simply a disciple of Jesus, but his equal. Afterwards, Judas, being the self-centered jerk that he is, spills his beer on Gaga … but Gaga loves him that way. The first lyrics of the song describe this reversal from the Biblical story, where Judas is the one getting washed by Gaga.
When he calls to me, I am ready
I’ll wash his feet with my hair if he needs
Forgive him when his tongue lies through his brain
Even after three times, he betrays me
Later in the video, there appears to be some kind of showdown between Jesus and Judas. Gaga – who is still Jesus’ lover – goes to Judas holding a golden gun, apparently to kill the one who would betray her spouse. Instead of a bullet, the gun “shoots out” lipstick. Gaga puts it on Judas’ mouth as if saying “go ahead and kiss Jesus, you have my blessing”.
The song also describes Gaga’s participation in “bringing Jesus down”:
I’ll bring him down, bring him down, down
A king with no crown, king with no crown
The “king with no crown” is more than likely Jesus, who is wearing during the entire video the Crown of Thorns. In Biblical accounts, that painful crown was put on his head by soldiers before his crucifixion in order to humiliate the one who claimed to be the “King of the Jews”.
Right after Gaga’s “official” taking sides with Judas, she is shown in a symbolic “cleansing” or “baptizing” scene.
So, despite Jesus’ virtuous deeds, Gaga is attracted to Judas. The Betrayer is portrayed as a rowdy, egoistical and devious being, which is not surprising since it is stated that Judas was possessed by Satan at the time he betrayed Jesus. Judas personifies the antithesis of Jesus’ selfless ways and represents the self-centered philosophy described by modern occultists such as Aleister Crowley whose philosophical tenets, describes the self as “the center of the universe”. Anton Lavey’s Satanic Bible describes the need for a “new religion” based on man’s earthly needs.
Past religions have always represented the spiritual nature of man, with little or no concern for his carnal or mundane needs. They have considered this life but transitory, and the flesh merely a shell; physical pleasure trivial, and pain a worthwhile preparation for the “Kingdom of God”. How well the utter hypocrisy comes forth when the “righteous” make a change in their religion to keep up with man’s natural change! The only way that Christianity can ever completely serve the needs of man is to become as Satanism is NOW.
It has become necessary for a NEW religion, based on man’s natural instincts, to come forth. THEY have named it. It is called Satanism.
- Anton Lavey, The Satanic Bible
Gaga, playing Mary Magdalene, is attracted to Judas’ ways. She not only “converts” to his side but also effectively brings Jesus down. This attraction to the “dark side” is summed up in these simple words:
I wanna love you,
But something’s pulling me away from you
Jesus is my virtue,
Judas is the demon I cling to
Other Details in the Video
Other apparently meaningless symbols in Judas help decoding the full meaning of the video.
Going beyond simple shots at Christianity for pure shock value, Judas summarizes the underlying spiritual messages found in Lady Gaga’s works which are, in turn, a reflection of the elite’s philosophy that needs to be taught to the masses. Whether it is intentional or not, Judassymbolizes the spiritual shift of humanity as it enters what is “the Age of Horus”. Crowley considered the last two thousand years to be the Age of Osiris, ruled by Christianity’s “emphasis on death, suffering, sorrow and the denial of the body”. He however considered this era to be necessary to give birth to the Age of Horus, whose Aeon would lead humanity to a new kind of spirituality. Other esoteric schools describe this shift in different words. Some describe it as the Age of Aquarius taking the place of the Age of Pisces, which was dominated by Christianity (they say Jesus was associated with the symbol of the fish because he ruled the Age of Pisces). Is this the reason Gaga’s words refer to the “future of culture”?
In the most Biblical sense,
I am beyond repentance
Fame, hooker, prostitute wench vomits her mind
But in the cultural sense
I just speak in future tense
Whether the general population subscribes to these esoteric predictions or not, it certainly is “following the script” that was laid out. The same way Lady Gaga was eyeing Judas while riding with Jesus, society as a whole has let go of the core tenets of Christianity to embrace a philosophy that is compatible with Crowley’s Thelema. Even if most people do not even know what is the Thelema, they live by it on a daily basis. That being said, organized religions and the elite are not necessarily opposite forces. Religions and religious sects have often been used as tools of the political elite to divide-and-conquer countries and to oppress and to manipulate the masses. Times have however changed and, today, the Illuminati is looking to unite the world under a single world government and a single world religion. This religion’s values are based on egoism, materialism and the sexualization of pretty much everything. Most music videos, movies and TV shows subtly celebrate these values. In other words, they want you to be in love with Judas.
Source: The Vigilant Citizen
Barack Obama stormed out of a meeting with Republican leaders on Wednesday when negotiations broke down over raising the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling. According to one report, the usually-unflappable Obama unloaded on House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) dressing him down in front of his colleagues.
Here’s a blurb from an article by Time’s Joe Klein, “He lit up Eric Cantor like he’s never been lit up,” said one Democrat who described Obama as telling the Republican leader that he would veto any short term bill that Cantor sends him.”
Then the president barked at Cantor, “Don’t call my bluff.”
Klein again: “The President of the United States monstered down on Representative Eric Cantor in Wednesday’s deficit ceiling squabble. This is so refreshing on so many levels. Cantor has been using this crisis to undermine his leader John Boehner, by playing the Tea Party/Grover Norquist recalcitrance card. The boy badly needed someone to get up in his face and Barack Obama, of all people, apparently did, telling Cantor, in no uncertain terms, that he’d veto any short term deficit ceiling fix or, indeed, any plan that did not include revenue increases.” (“Cantor to the Woodshed”, Joe Klein, Time)
So, what’s this all about?
It’s just more political theater really. Are we supposed to be cheered by the fact that Obama finally found that spark of passion that liberals have been hoping to see for more than 3 years now? He certainly never got mad when workers were stripped of their collective bargaining rights in Minnesota, or when the GOP-led congress stopped him from shutting down America’s torture-gulag at Guantanamo Bay, or when innocent women and children were killed in one of the many errant bomb attacks by US drones in Afghanistan or Northern Pakistan. But now he’s pissed because the Republicans won’t let him raise the debt limit and push through his savage $4 trillion cuts to public services and entitlements?
Give me a break.
Look, Obama’s goal is the same as the Republicans, to slash public spending as much as possible so more capital can be diverted to the wars and Wall Street. Period. The only difference is that Obama wants to make it look like the cuts were the result of hard-fought negotiations with GOP deficit hawks and not just part of his own corporate-friendly agenda. That way the Republicans take the hit public approval-wise while the Teflon President sails to victory in 2012. It’s all politics.
Here’s a little more background from The Hill:
“Despite the tension, Obama and the Republicans did seem to find common ground on about $1.7 trillion in cuts over 10 years, cuts that were identified during talks led by Vice President Biden.
“And we’re willing to go further than that,” the Democratic official said. “It’s a pretty clear indication of how far the president has come in terms of his willingness to come off his maximalist position.”…
“We had a pretty fulsome discussion on the specifics that the White House was prepared to agree to, or at least that they thought were options that were viable,” Hoyer said in an interview shortly after the meeting at the White House.” (“Obama warns Cantor: ‘Don’t call my bluff’ in debt-ceiling talks”, The Hill)
See? Obama has already given away the farm and wants to give away even more, right? That’s why he’s mad, because the Republicans won’t play ball and provide him with the cover he needs to screw working people once again.
By the way, notice how the Bush tax cuts–which Obama approved and which add another $3.3 trillion to the deficits in the next 10 years–haven’t been a part of the current negotiations. Nor has the military budget. It’s all cuts to popular social programs and public spending.
So, yes, Obama does get ruffled when he can’t do his job the way he would like to; when nit-picky Tea Partiers don’t understand the way that Washington’s corporate welfare system really works. Then he has to throw a hissy-fit and stomp his feet like a petulant 5-year old. But it’s all just empty posturing; it doesn’t really mean anything. Klein’s article is pure malarkey.
There is a serious side to the debt ceiling negotiations though, but it’s usually glossed-over by the media. If the ceiling isn’t raised by August 2, then the United States will technically default on its debt. Now, granted, the political establishment will move heaven and earth to make sure that doesn’t happen, but still, the Tea Party contingent–that are adamantly opposed to raising the limit without major concessions–could throw a spanner in the works and derail efforts for a resolution.
And, if there is no budget agreement by August 2, then this is what we can expect:
“…Federal spending would instantly have to be reduced by about $100bn per month. By the end of 2011 federal spending would be about $500 bn lower for the year than it would have been otherwise. ….spending cuts of that size would reduce the US’s 2011 GDP by multiple percentage points. The Q3 and Q4 GDP growth rates wold probably be on the order of between -5% and -10%. Recall that during the recession of 2008-09, GDP only fell by about 4% in total. The unemployment rate would be likely to rise by several percentage points from its current level of 9.2%, to perhaps 15% or more of the US population. Recall that at its worst, the unemployment rate during the Great Recession only reached 10%.”…Federal spending would instantly have to be reduced by about $100bn per month. By the end of 2011 federal spending would be about $500 bn lower for the year than it would have been otherwise.
So when you read someone blithely writing that the federal government will not default in the absence of a debt ceiling deal, and instead will merely have to trim excess spending, remember that what they’re really advocating is a new and deliberately caused Great Depression. And not just in economists like me.” (“Great Depressions”, Streetlight Blog)
As bad as it sounds, a US default would be much worse then Streetlight’s dire predictions. Why? Because the so-called shadow banking system is propped up on US Treasuries. They’re the foundation block in bank-funding operation that will experience sudden and significant haircuts if USTs are downgraded. And, we’re not talking “chump change” here either. There’s $4 trillion in Triple A collateral that could be marked-down if the debt ceiling isn’t raised promptly. Here’s a summary from the Economist:
“A US technical default would convulse markets. Nothing else is certain…If a deal cannot be reached before August 2nd the Treasury says it will be forced to default…..
Domestic banks would not have to classify their sizeable holdings of Treasuries as non-performing if they thought the default short-lived. But they would suffer nonetheless. Currently Treasuries represent roughly 30% of the collateral that financial institutions such as investment banks use to borrow in the $4 trillion repurchase (“repo”) market. They represent another 4-5% of the $1 trillion in collateral used in the derivatives market. A default could trigger demands by lenders like money-market funds for more or different collateral.
Matthew Zames of JPMorgan Chase, writing on behalf of the securities industry in April, gave warning that this could “lead to deleveraging and a sharp drop in lending”. Money-market funds themselves hold another $338 billion of Treasuries. In the event of a default at least one would probably “break the buck” (ie, fail to give the principal back to investors), threatening “a broader run on money funds”, Mr Zames said…..” (“The Mother of all Tail Risks”, The Economist)
Keep in mind that the financial crisis began in the repo market in August 2007 when French bank Paribas PNB decided it could no longer value the mortgage-backed assets (MBS) it was holding, so it stopped redemptions. That’s what started the financial meltdown which peaked when Lehman Brothers folded a year later in September, 2008. In other words, there was a run on the $10 trillion shadow banking system because the collateral the banks were holding was quickly losing value. That depleted the banks’ capital and sent the financial system in freefall.
We’re not saying that that WILL happen, but just that it COULD happen. That’s what the debt ceiling flap is all about. And that’s why Obama is peddling as hard as he can to resolve the issue before the deadline, because, once again, Wall Street is out on a limb and needs Washington to bail them out.
“Americans have been duped,” Madam Jane stated yesterday. She is our neighborhood fortune teller and her predictions are always accurate — if a bit scary. And while gazing into her new and improved high-tech crystal ball, Madame Jane also predicted that all this unwarranted and inappropriately naive gullibility on the part of Americans today is gonna end up costing our grandchildren a LOT.
“And exactly how do you see that our grandchildren will be affected by us having been bamboozled?” I asked her. “Will they have to suffer the indignity of having only 300 channels to chose from on their cable TV? Or not having as many versions of made-in-China Barbie as we used to have when we were kids? Or having to cut back on their trips to the mall to only three times a week?”
But judging from the tears that began welling up in Madame Jane’s eyes as she watched her crystal ball in dismay, I suddenly realized how very painful it must be — to be gifted with the Second Sight in these troubled times. “To put it mildly,” stated MJ, “our grandchildren are now doomed.” Oh crap. But in what way? What exactly does Madame Jane see?
“I see children trapped inside the agonizing grip of hunger, thirst and starvation. I see children being raised like savages in filthy slave labor camps. I see children crying in the night and trying to eat grass and dirt just to stay alive.”
“And you’re talking about some nameless and faceless children living in some far-way third-world country like Biafra or Darfur or Gaza, right?”
“No, I’m talking about American kids here. Blond-haired, blue-eyed, white-skinned American kids. And brown-skinned and yellow-skinned American kids too. Scrambling through gutters and ditches, roving in packs, trying desperately to just stay alive.” Good grief.
“But is there nothing that we can do right now to avoid this terrible fate for our grandchildren?” I asked.
“Sure there is. Lots of stuff. But you alone can’t do it all. And no one else in America seems to even want to do it. Most Americans have been willingly duped into complacency — while our future is being robbed blind by the worthless and useless bunch of lying greedy heartless bastards who have taken over our economy, our government and our hearts and our minds. But unless all Americans start to act right NOW, the future that I see is assured.”
I’m going to have to agree with Madame Jane on this one. We have sold our grandchildren’s patrimony for pittance — to the religious fakers who tell us to hate our neighbors. To the generals and war profiteers who tell us that killing and war is the only answer to every problem. To that great casino on Wall Street that uses our congressional representatives, president and Supreme Court justices as its personal errand boys and security guards. And to the hypocritical self-styled “Patriotic Americans” who, when no one else is looking, use our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, our Flag and our Pledge of Allegiance for toilet paper.
“So. Madame Jane. What are you are saying here? That horrible things will happen to our grandchildren if we don’t wise up, right?” Pretty much.
“But after all these duped Americans have been so righteously forewarned by yourself, do we actually then start to wise up?” Er, no. “I thought as much.”
So I thanked Madame Jane for giving me her extremely grim take on the future and then got up to leave. “You sit right back down in that chair right now, Missie. I still got something else to say.” And then she whipped out an ancient raggedy deck of tarot cards, shuffled them twice and pulled out the Hanged Man. Oops. Not good.
“Your grandchildren aren’t the only ones who are gonna suffer here, deary,” she told me. “Tea Party members are also gonna be doomed — to a life of living in cardboard boxes under the freeway and subsisting on cat food. Those people have just shot themselves in the foot. ‘Rugged Individualism’ is NOT gonna work out for them. Not after they lose their MediCare and their Social Security and their homes and their cars and their jobs and their roads and their trains and their police force and their doctors and their schools….”
I myself don’t give a rat’s arse about what happens to Teabaggers in the future. As far as I’m concerned, they deserve what they get. But Madame Jane actually seems to care about these poor unfortunate souls. “Of course they have been duped by the corporatists and the oligarchs and the talk-show hosts and the rich people. Duped. Duped. Duped. But even still, they are going to have to pay a very stiff price for their stupidity, gullibility and naivete. We are currently living in a world that is far too fast-paced for these naive huckster’s marks to survive for long. There is far too much at stake now for gullibility to serve as either a protection or excuse. They too are gonna pay. But still. You do sorta have to feel sorry for them.”
I got her drift. Pity the poor Teabaggers, they know not what they do. Yeah, right.
“But,” I protested, hoping to get in the last word, “Tea Partiers are currently all jumping up and down and screaming and demanding stuff like, ‘Rugged individualism, smaller government, less regulation, no unions, no infrastructure investment, no help with healthcare and no Socialism for anyone except for the Tea Party’s idols, the rich.’ So then how about we just give them what they want?” And they deserve what they get. Humph.
But trying to get in the last word with Madame Jane is always kinda hard. “We are all still human beings,” she reminded me. “And we all still have ideals to live up to. That’s what separates us from animals. And if something tragic happens to the least of us, then it happens to us all.” Or to Teabaggers. Or our grandchildren. They’re all doomed.
And then MJ started ranting along about the new 21st-century Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse — cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and autism. I just covered my ears.
“So now we have the Teabaggers dying a horrible death and our grandchildren dying a horrible death and America’s new Four Horsemen mowing whole groups of people down. Fine. But can you please get a little bit more specific here? Like, what is gonna be happening to ME?” So Madame Jane then read my palm.
“I see a horrible death for you too….” Now wait a minute. That’s going too far! “See that line there? It means that you have become addicted to sugar — and that you will die from an overdose of the stuff.” Yeah but what a way to go.
“Could be worse,” I replied. “Sugar’s not so bad. I mean, I could be addicted to heroin….”
“Nope. Sugar addiction is much much more worse than smack.” Oh really? How is that? “With heroin addiction, first you gotta wait until the good stuff is imported from Afghanistan and then you gotta go slink around in the nasty part of town until you score off of some shady illegal dealer. But not so with sugar — you can walk fifty feet in almost any direction in America and legally score all the sugar, fructose and those lame sugar-substitutes you could ever possibly crave.”
But, hey, at least I’m not addicted to cigarettes. “That wouldn’t be as bad either,” said Madame Jane — always so negative! “Right now there’s a huge tax on cigarettes that will hopefully pay for all those costly lung cancer treatments that heavy smokers gotta have. But who is going to pay for all that diabetes treatment once you go blind and all your toes start to fall off? There’s no tax on high-fructose corn syrup that’s gonna help you out here!”
Yikes! It looks like I’m gonna be doomed too.
PS: Recent newspaper headlines have all been shrieking that Social Security is gonna be cut in order to balance the federal deficit. If this happens, Americans are going to be even more duped than was even dreamed of in Madame Jane’s philosophy. But here’s a very obvious prediction from me:
If you sincerely want to cut the federal deficit and are not just here to blow smoke, then let’s all just stop financing and fighting all these resource wars that greedy Texas oilmen have been happily inflicting on us for decades. That would do it. Let’s pull out of Iraq, Libya, Palestine, Afghanistan, Somalia, Kenya, Yemen, Mexico, Nigeria, Columbia, whatever. Let’s just let these freaking oilmen finance and fight their own freaking resource wars by themselves — or, at the very least, let us share in some of their profits.
The White House told Congress on Wednesday that President Barack Obama has the legal authority to press on with U.S. military involvement in Libya and urged skeptical lawmakers not to send “mixed messages” about their commitment to the NATO-led air war.
Delivering a detailed report to Congress to justify Obama’s Libya policy, the administration argued he had the constitutional power to continue the U.S. role against Muammar Gaddafi’s forces even though lawmakers had not authorized it.
Tensions in Washington over the Libya conflict reflected growing unease over U.S. entanglement in a third conflict in the Muslim world in addition to costly wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and pressure for Obama to clarify the U.S. mission in the North African country.
The 32-page response to lawmakers’ complaints followed a warning on Tuesday from House Speaker John Boehner that Obama was on thin legal ice by keeping U.S. forces involved in Libya for nearly three months without congressional approval.
But the White House insisted that Obama had not overstepped his authority because U.S. military participation in Libya had already been scaled back to a support role that did not require congressional consent.
Boehner accused Obama of failing to respect the role of Congress in military operations and asked him to explain the legal grounds for the Libya mission, saying that by Sunday the president would be in violation of a 1973 law called the War Powers Resolution if nothing changed.
The U.S. Constitution says that only Congress can declare war, while the president is commander in chief of the armed forces.
The White House cautioned lawmakers against signaling a wavering U.S. commitment as they pressed their concerns about Libya. “We believe that it’s important for Congress not to send mixed messages about a goal that we think most members of Congress share,” Obama spokesman Jay Carney said, referring to hopes for the success of the NATO-led mission.
’THE LAW WAS VIOLATED’
Ten members of Congress filed suit against Obama in federal court on Wednesday over Libya. The group, led by Democrat Dennis Kucinich and Republican Walter Jones, challenged Obama’s decision to commit U.S. forces to Libya without congressional authorization.
“With regard to the war in Libya, we believe that the law was violated,” Kucinich said in a statement.
But senior administration officials briefing reporters argued that Obama was not in violation of the War Powers Resolution because U.S. forces, which initially spearheaded the assault on Gaddafi’s air defenses in March, had pulled back to a support role in the NATO-led air campaign in early April.
“We’re not engaged in any of the activities that typically over the years in war powers analysis is considered to constitute hostilities,” one official said. “We’re not engaged in sustained fighting.”
The law prohibits U.S. armed forces from being involved in military actions for more than 60 days without congressional authorization, and includes a further 30-day withdrawal period, which would expire on Sunday.
The White House’s arguments seemed unlikely to defuse tensions with Congress over Libya, where rebels have made only halting progress against government troops and strains have emerged in the Western alliance.
Brendan Buck, Boehner’s spokesman, said the White House had presented “creative arguments” that would have to be examined, but he made clear that Republicans remained skeptical.
“The commander-in-chief has a responsibility to articulate how U.S. military action is vital to our national security and consistent with American policy goals,” he said. “With Libya, the President has fallen short on this obligation.”
The White House report reiterated the U.S. rationale for joining the U.N.-approved air war against Gaddafi — to keep the Libyan leader from creating a “humanitarian catastrophe” and prevent further instability in the region.
It also said the NATO-led mission was making progress and that Gaddafi was finding himself increasingly isolated internationally, but made no predictions on when he might be ousted, except to say it would be “only a matter of time.”
Obama has also faced pressure from some NATO allies to take a more assertive military role in the conflict, but he has resisted and vowed no U.S. ground forces would be deployed.
The debate over Libya comes as concerns grow in Washington over the costs and duration of the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan, where Obama has pledged to start withdrawing troops in July.
The report said the cost of U.S. military operations and humanitarian assistance in Libya was $716 million as of June 3 and was projected to reach $1.1 billion by September 30.
But seeking to make clear it would not add to U.S. fiscal woes, the report said those funds would be found in the existing Defense Department budget and therefore not require a supplemental appropriations request to Congress.
Article from: news.yahoo.com
The global economy has become so incredibly unstable at this point that it is not going to take much to plunge the world into a horrific economic nightmare. The foundations of the world economic system are so decayed and so corrupted that even a stiff breeze could potentially topple the entire structure over. Over the past couple of months a constant parade of bad economic news has come streaming in from Europe, Asia and the United States. Signs of an impending economic slowdown are everywhere. So what “tipping point” will trigger the next global economic downturn? Nobody knows for sure, but potential tipping points are all around us.
Today, the global economic system is even more vulnerable than it was back in 2008. Virtually none of the systemic problems that contributed to the 2008 collapse have been fixed.
Mark Mobius, the head of the emerging markets desk at Templeton Asset Management, was recently was quoted in Forbes as saying the following….
“There is definitely going to be another financial crisis around the corner because we haven’t solved any of the things that caused the previous crisis.”
The “financial reform” law that Barack Obama and the Congress passed a while back was a complete and total joke. They might as well have written the law on toilet paper for all the good that it is doing.
We did not learn from our mistakes and our future economic lessons are going to be even more painful.
The world is drowning in a mountain of debt, the global financial system is packed to the gills with toxic derivatives, everyone is leveraged to the hilt and the dominoes could start falling at any time.
I am not the only one that is warning that another financial collapse is coming. In fact, a whole lot of people have been warning about the next financial collapse lately.
So what will the tipping point for the next collapse be?
The following are some potential nominees….
Tipping Point #1: Syria
Syria is a situation to watch very, very closely. The Syrian government is in a lot of trouble right now. Sadly, the instability inside Syria probably makes war with Israel even more likely.
Make no mistake – a war between Israel and Syria has been brewing for a long, long time and at some point it will happen. When it happens, the entire Middle East may erupt in warfare.
Just the other day, a very troubling incident happened in the area around the Golan Heights. The following is an excerpt from a report by The Daily Mailabout the incident….
“About 20 pro-Palestinian demonstrators were killed and 325 injured yesterday when Israeli forces opened fire on them as they crossed the border from Syria into occupied territories, according to reports.”
At this point, the Syrian government is probably glad that the attention has been taken off of them at least for a while. The Syrian government has been getting a lot of bad press lately. The following is an excerpt from a recent report by Human Rights Watch about the treatment of protesters inside Syria….
“The methods of torture included prolonged beatings with sticks, twisted wires, and other devices; electric shocks administered with Tasers and electric batons; use of improvised metal and wooden ‘racks’; and, in at least one case documented by Human Rights Watch, the rape of a male detainee with a baton.
“Interrogators and guards also subjected detainees to various forms of humiliating treatment, such as urinating on the detainees, stepping on their faces, and making them kiss the officers’ shoes. Several detainees said they were repeatedly threatened with imminent execution.”
So in light of the “precedent” that we recently set in Libya, does this mean that we will be “forced” to conduct a “humanitarian mission” inside Syria as well?
Syria is one tipping point that we all need to keep a close eye on.
Tipping Point #2: Iran
The Iranian nuclear program is in the news again. A new report by RAND Corporation researcher Gregory S. Jones claims that Iran could have a nuclear weapon within 2 months. His report is based on recent findings by the International Atomic Energy Agency. According to Jones, airstrikes alone would be incapable of stopping Iran’s nuclear weapons program at this point. Instead, Jones says that a “military occupation” would be required.
It is a minor miracle that a war with Iran has not erupted yet. It seems almost inevitable that at some point either the United States or Israel will use military force to try to stop Iran’s nuclear program.
When that happens, it is going to cause a major shock to the global economy.
Tipping Point #3: Libya
NATO has made it abundantly clear that Moammar Gadhafi will no longer be tolerated. In fact, NATO apparently plans to reduce Tripoli to a heap of smoking ruins if that is what it takes to bring about the fall of Gadhafi.
What a “humanitarian mission” we have going in Libya, eh? It turns out that NATO believes that the United Nations gave it permission to bomb television stations and to make attack runs with helicopters.
Russian Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov recently said that by using attack helicopters, NATO has moved dangerously close to turning the Libya operation into a ground invasion….
“Using attack helicopters, in my view, is the last but one step before the land operation.”
So why is Libya a potential tipping point?
It isn’t because Gadhafi is a threat. He is toast.
It is because the rest of the world is watching what is happening in Libya, and that is raising global tensions.
Even if Gadhafi falls, the Libyan operation will still be a failure because it has brought us all significantly closer to World War III.
Tipping Point #4: More Revolutions In The Middle East
The revolutions throughout the Middle East earlier this year sent oil prices absolutely skyrocketing and they have remained at elevated levels.
And in case you haven’t noticed, revolutions continue to sweep the Middle East.
Have you seen what has been happening in Yemen lately?
Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has burns over 40% of his body and he has suffered a collapsed lung as a result of a recent attack.
If violence and protests throughout the Middle East become even more intense as the weather warms up this summer that could have a very significant impact on world financial markets.
Tipping Point #5: Fukushima
The mainstream news has gotten a bit tired of covering it, but the situation at Fukushima is still a complete and total disaster.
Japan’s Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters admitted on Monday that three reactors experienced “full meltdowns” in the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami in March.
Did it really take them nearly three months to figure this out, or were they lying to the rest of the world all of this time?
The truth is that the nuclear disaster at Fukushima is far worse than the mainstream media has been telling us. If you doubt this, just check out this excellent article or this article by Natural News: “Land around Fukushima now radioactive dead zone; resembles target struck by atomic bomb“.
The economic impact of the Fukushima disaster is going to continue to unfold over an extended period of time. It turns out that Japan is now officially in a recession. Their economy contracted at a 3.7 percent annualized rate during the first quarter.
Look for more bad economic numbers to come out of Japan for the rest of the year. Considering the fact that the Japanese economy is the third largest economy in the world, the fact that they are struggling so badly right now is not a good sign for the rest of us.
Tipping Point #6: Oil Prices
The price of oil is going to continue to be one of the biggest economic stories for the rest of this year and for 2012 as well.
The last time U.S. energy expenditures were over 9 percent of GDP was in 2008 and we quickly plunged into the deepest economic downturn since the Great Depression.
Well, we have reached the significant 9 percent figure once again in 2011, and many fear that once again high oil prices will cause another major economic decline.
Tipping Point #7: Government Austerity
In the United States, it is not just the federal government that is drowning in debt.
All over America, there are state and local governments that are financial basket cases.
I don’t always agree with the time frames that Meredith Whitney puts out there, but she is absolutely correct that we are going to see a massive municipal bond crisis. The following is an excerpt from a recent report about Whitney’s predictions on CNN….
“Meredith Whitney is issuing a fresh warning to mutual funds, banks, and politicians: The state of state finances is far worse than what you think, or at least than what you’ve been willing to tell the investors and taxpayers who will eventually carry the burden.”
Many state and local governments are attempting to get their budgets balanced by making huge budget cuts. But most of the time these austerity programs also include the elimination of a lot of government jobs.
UBS Investment Research is projecting that state and local governments will combine to slash a whopping 450,000 jobs by the end of next year.
So where will the half a million good jobs come from to replace all of those lost jobs?
Tipping Point #8: The European Sovereign Debt Crisis
Greece is just the tip of the iceberg in Europe.
Moody’s downgraded Greek debt again last Wednesday. This time Moody’s downgraded Greek debt by three levels all the way down to Caa1. At this point, the yield on 10-year Greek bonds is over 15 percent.
The EU has been going crazy trying to deal with the Greek debt crisis. The truth is that a default by the Greek government would be absolutely catastrophic. If you do not understand the kind of chaos a Greek default would set off on world financial markets, just read this editorial.
But Greece is not the only major European nation with a massive debt problem.
The government of Ireland is already indicating that they may need another bailout.
Portugal, Spain and Italy are also on the verge of collapse.
So will the EU bail all of these nations out for years and years to come?
At some point will the whole house of cards come crashing down?
Everyone needs to keep watching what is going on in Europe. The status quo is not sustainable and it cannot go on forever.
Tipping Point #9: The Dying U.S. Dollar
The euro is not the only major currency that is in trouble.
The U.S. dollar is also slowly dying.
On April 18th, Standard & Poor’s altered its outlook on U.S. government debt from “stable” to “negative” and warned that the U.S. could soon lose its prized AAA rating.
The sad truth is that faith in the U.S. dollar and in U.S. Treasuries is rapidly declining. The mainstream news is not reporting on it much, but right now the Chinese are rapidly dumping U.S. government debt.
As the dollar declines, so will the purchasing power of average Americans. We are already seeing a tremendous amount of inflation in 2011.
But this is just the beginning.
A lot worse is going to be coming down the road.
Tipping Point #10: Drought
A lot of people that read my articles doubt that we will ever see a major global food crisis.
But one is coming.
It is just a matter of time.
Even now, many areas of the world are experiencing very serious droughts. The following is from a recent Bloomberg article….
Parts of China, the biggest grower, had the least rain in a century, some European regions are the driest in 50 years and almost half the winter-wheat crop in the U.S., the largest exporter, is rated poor or worse. Inventory is dropping 8.8 percent, the most in five years, Rabobank International says. Prices will advance 20 percent to as high as $9.25 a bushel by Dec. 31, a Bloomberg survey of 14 analysts and traders shows.
Are you concerned yet?
You should be.
But if you prefer some mindless pablum that will make you feel better, we have some of that for you too.
Larry Summers, the former director of the National Economic Council under Barack Obama, recently told CNBC the following….
“We definitely hit a slower patch, but I think the basic fact that the terrible financial strains we had are abating, remains in place, and I expect this recovery to continue for a substantial period of time.”
Does that make you feel better?
Larry Summers says that everything is going to be okay.
It would be great if Summers was actually right, but sadly he is not.
In fact, the worst economic times that America has ever seen are ahead.
The following is a brief excerpt from a recent interview with Dmitry Orlov about the coming economic collapse that was posted on shtfplan.com….
First you have financial collapse, which is basically the volume of debt that has to be taken on in order for the economy to continue functioning, cannot continue. We’re seeing that right now in Greece, we’re probably going to see that in Japan, we’re definitely at a point now in the United States where even if you raised the income tax to 100 percent, there’s absolutely no way of covering the liabilities of the U.S. federal government. So, we’re at that point now but the workout of the financial collapse is not all quite there. We don’t quite have a worthless currency but that’s in the works.
That, of course, is followed by commercial collapseespecially in a country like the United States that imports two thirds of its oil. A lot of that is on credit and if a little bit of that oil goes missing then the economy starts to fall apart because nothing moves unless you burn oil in the United States and, of course, a lot of goods that are sold everywhere are imported again, on credit.
When the U.S. dollar dies and our financial system collapses we are not going to be able to get all of the things that we need from the rest of the world so cheaply any longer.
That is going to cause fundamental changes inside the United States.
Right now, the economic news just seems to get worse and worse, but this is just the beginning.
What is eventually going to happen in this country is going to be so nightmarish that most Americans could not even imagine it right now.
So are our leaders doing anything to prepare for the coming economic crisis?
No, they are too busy with other things.
The big political news of the day was U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner finally admitting that he sent out lewd photos of himself over Twitter to women that he was not married to.
We have become the laughingstock of the world and the economic collapse has not even happened yet.
Source: The Economic Collapse
The slowdown has begun. The economy has started to sputter and unemployment claims have tipped 400,000 for the last seven weeks. That means new investment is too weak to lower the jobless rate which is presently stuck at 9 percent. Manufacturing–which had been the one bright-spot in the recovery– has also started to retreat with some areas in the country now contracting. Housing, of course, continues its downward trek putting more pressure on bank balance sheets and plunging more homeowners into negative equity.
The likelihood of another credit expansion in this environment is next-to-nil. Total private sector debt is still at historic highs which augurs years of digging out and painful deleveraging. Analysts have already started slicing their estimates for 2nd Quarter GDP which will be considerably lower than their original predictions. With the economy dead-in-the-water, the IPOs, the Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A), and the stock buybacks and all the other ways of amplifying leverage will slow putting a dent in quarterly earnings and pushing down stock prices. Here’s a clip from the Wall Street Journal:
“After a disappointing first quarter, economists largely predicted the U.S. recovery would ramp back up as short-term disruptions such as higher gas prices, bad weather and supply problems in Japan subsided.
But there’s little indication that’s happening. Manufacturing is cooling, the housing market is struggling and consumers are keeping a close eye on spending, meaning the U.S. economy might be on a slower path to full health than expected.
“It’s very hard to generate a rapid recovery when rapid recoveries are historically driven by housing and the consumer,” said Nigel Gault, an economist at IHS Global Insight. He expects an annualized, inflation-adjusted growth rate of less than 3% in coming quarters—better than the first-quarter’s 1.8% rate, but too slow to make a meaningful dent in unemployment.” (“Economists Downgrade Prospects for Growth”, Wall Street Journal)
The Fed has tried to revive the economy by buying government bonds (QE2) which helped to boost equities prices. Unfortunately, the program sent gas and food prices higher too, which has only deepened the distress for consumers forcing them to cut their discretionary spending even more. While retail sales improved significantly in the latter months of the program, a closer look at the data shows that most of the money went for food and fuel. So, basically, QE2 was a “wash”. Now businesses are left with bulging inventories and fewer customers because demand is weakening. This is from the New York Times:
“An economy that is growing this slowly will not add jobs quickly. For the next couple of months, employment growth could slow from about 230,000 recently to something like 150,000 jobs a month, only slightly faster than normal population growth. That is certainly not fast enough to make a big dent in the still huge number of unemployed people.
Are any policy makers paying attention?…
The most sensible response for Washington would be to begin thinking more seriously about taking out an insurance policy on the recovery. The Fed could stop worrying so much about inflation, which remains historically low, and look at how else it might encourage spending. As Mr. Bernanke has said before, the Fed “retains considerable power” to lift growth.
The White House and Congress, meanwhile, could begin talking about extending last year’s temporary extension of business tax credits, household tax cuts and jobless benefits beyond Dec. 31. It would be easy enough to pair such an extension with longer-term deficit reduction.” (“The Economy Is Wavering. Does Washington Notice?”, New York Times)
This is more than just a “rough patch”. The economy is stalling and needs help, but consumers and households are not in a position to take on more debt, and every recovery since the end of WW2 has seen an increase in debt-fueled consumption. So, where will the spending come from this time? That’s the mystery. The early signs of “green shoots” were produced by fiscal stimulus from increased government spending. But now that the deficit hawks are in control of congress, the budget will be pared and the economy will remain sluggish. If government spending is cut, unemployment will rise, the output gap will widen, and GDP will fizzle. Contractionary policies do not lead to growth or prosperity. Just look at England.
Most of the Inflationistas have returned to their bunkers sensing that deflationary pressures are building and the signs of Depression have reemerged. Stocks appear to be on the brink of a major correction. Here’s what economist Nouriel Roubini told Bloomberg News on Friday:
“The world economy is losing strength halfway through the year as high oil prices and fallout from Japan’s natural disaster and Europe’s debt woes take their toll…. Until two weeks ago I’d say markets were shrugging off all these concerns, saying they don’t matter because they were believing the global economic recovery was on track. But I think right now we’re on the tipping point of a market correction….
With slow global economic growth, they’re going to surprise on the downside. We’re going to see the beginning of a correction that’s going to increase volatility and that’s going to increase risk aversion.” (“Roubini Sees Stock-Correction ‘Tipping Point’”, Bloomberg)
With short-term interest rates stuck at zero and QE2 winding down by the end of June, the Fed appears to be out of bullets. At the same time, government (at all levels) is trimming spending and laying off workers.
When spending slows, the economy contracts. It’s that simple. Without emergency stimulus, commodities will fall hard and stocks will follow. Look out below.
The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court announced on Thursday that he would soon stand before the United Nations and report on alleged Libyan war crimes. We can only hope that his brief will include the latest war crime, the murder of Qaddafi’s family, his son and three grandchildren, and the assassination attempt on the life of the Libyan leader on May Day, 2011. Cameron, Sarkozy, the NATO field commanders and the Danish air crew should all be indicted for this crime.
UNSC Resolution 1970 is not a licence to commit mass murder. The resolution simply established a no-fly zone; it was designed to stem the violence, not turn Tripoli into a killing field. This is a clear case of coldly calculated targeted murder, as ruthless and brutal as any other form of political assassination. The date of the operation was known well beforehand, and had already been openly discussed in late April by the Russian Secret Service SVR (External Intelligence Service). On April 29th, a Russian netzine published an article by Kirill Svetitsky who quoted an anonymous source within SVR:
There will be an attempt to kill Muammar Qaddafi on or before May 2. The governments of France, Britain and the US decided on it for the warfare in Libya does not proceed well for the anti-Libyan alliance: the regular army has substantial gains; Bedouin tribes entered the fight on the government’s side; in Benghazi, a “second front” was opened by the armed local militias who are tired of rebels’ presence, their incessant fights and robberies.
But the main reason for the timing is that the Italian parliament plans to discuss Italy’s involvement in Libyan campaign on May 3. Until now, decisions were taken by Berlusconi, but there are strong differences of opinion within the government coalition regarding the Libyan war, and they will probably bring the government down on May 3, and Italy will effectively leave the anti-Libyan alliance. It is likely to have a domino effect. For this reason leaders of the UK, the US and France decided to eliminate Qaddafi not later than May 2d, before the session of the Italian parliament on May 3d.
Unlike many Internet predictions, this one turned out to be timely and exact. On May 1st, the US, France and the UK made a failed attempt on the life of Muammar Qaddafi, although they did succeed in killing his son and three grandchildren. Such unusual operative foreknowledge implies that Western leaders had advised the Russians of the planned attack, and that the SVR had then leaked the plans.
The attack itself imitated the Israeli technique of “targeted killings”. The Israeli Air Force is famous for dropping a one-ton (1800 pounds) bomb on a Gazan house in an attempt to liquidate Salah Shehadeh, a Hamas leader, in 2002. As “collateral damage” 13 civilians, mostly women and children, were killed and many others injured. Among the dead were Shehadeh’s wife Layla and his 15-year-old daughter Iman, who happened to be with him in the house at the time. This act of mass murder was publicly described as “a war crime”, and Israeli military personnel were later indicted in Spain and the UK.
If God does not punish Las Vegas then he owes an apology to Sodom, quipped Jay Leno. Likewise, if the initiators of the Qaddafi assassination attempt are not called to justice, then Europe owes an apology to the Israeli military.
This brutal assassination attempt should open the eyes of those in Europe and the US who still believe that this war is ‘just’, or at least ‘justifiable’. The true reasons behind Western neocolonial interventions in the Middle East now stand revealed to all. One small example: the same source in Russian Intelligence also leaked a document, a letter from Libyan rebel leaders promising France 35% of all Libyan oil. So much for humanitarian reasons!
It appears more and more that the whole Libyan affair was done up with smoke and mirrors. Initially the Benghazi Uprising was nothing more than a small local riot; the rebellion was unknown in other cities. Soon, however, the government was destabilized by Al-Jazeera, as the popular Arab network broadcast the “news” that Muammar Qaddafi and his sons had fled the country for Venezuela and that his black mercenaries were about to unleash another holocaust on hapless Libyans. Al-Jazeera’s lies have proven to be more damaging even than NATO’s bombs; they have fought Qaddafi tooth and nail, from the first rebel yell to the last foul scene of murder. Even today, while the bodies of Qaddafi’s family were spread before Libyan churchmen, al-Jazeera continued to broadcast denials from Benghazi. Stephen Lendmancorrectly notes that “Jazeera has become a more efficient propaganda machine against the Arab minds than the BBC ever was”. The uprising was led by Guantanamo detainees like Abu Sufian Hamuda bin Kumu. Perhaps they should be put onto the next flight back to the USA: thanks, but no thanks.
The Libyan campaign deserves to end like its predecessor the Suez campaign – with the embarrassing withdrawal of NATO forces, and the sooner the better. Enough is enough! Let the Libyans solve their differences themselves.
Syria après Libya?
Even as Libya settles into the typical intervention quagmire, developments in Syria are starting to heat up. While Russian President Medvedev did manage to override his own Foreign Office and Putin’s government, pulling off an abstention during the UNSC vote on the Libyan intervention, there is not the slightest chance for a similar trick regarding Syria. Syria has a Russian naval base in Tartus, practically the only base Russia has managed to keep out of the many Soviet bases lost, from Cuba to Vietnam. Moreover, Syria has a large Orthodox Christian community that openly supports President Bashar el Assad and is plainly nervous about the possible success of the Dera’a uprising. They believe the rebels are Salafist anti-Christian fanatics armed by the Saudis. Russia has always been the traditional protector of the Christian Orthodox in the Middle East, and is not likely to renege on its responsibilities towards these communities.
The Syrian Christian view of the protesters was expressed by the Latin Patriarch of Antioch: “… some groups whose main objective is to provoke a violent response from the government are infiltrating the protests that originally grew from social and economic problems. Tension is stoked to the point of gaining the international community’s condemnation. There are criminals involved in the protest; there is a massive introduction of weapons in the country to provoke a confrontation… Sure, there are young, frustrated people, but many say that among them are criminals and even fundamentalist Muslims who cry for jihad. I think the tactics of a phony war are being used against Syria.”
It’s likely that Russia will defend Syria even if its government decides to crush the rioters with an iron fist, just as Hafez el Assad quelled the 1982 Hama revolt. There is a realpolitik basis for this unconditional support: Bahrain is the base of the US Fifth fleet, and that’s why Bahrain’s rulers were allowed to suppress their “freedom seekers”; Syria is the main base for the Russian Mediterranean fleet and Russia intends to keep it that way. But there is an additional reason as well: the Syrians and their Russian friends believe that the riots are instigated by foreign agencies: Saudis, Americans, Israelis. They point out that the border town of Dera’a (besides being the place where Lawrence of Arabia was flogged and abused, by his own account in the Seven Pillars of Wisdom) is a hotbed for militant Islamic radicalism of the al Qaeda variety, and is located close to the Jordanian city of Ramtha, another safe-house for Muslim radicals heavily infiltrated by the Israeli secret services.
A conspiracy theory? Perhaps, but it is a theory confirmed by the conspirators themselves. President Bashar el Assad was offered a deal by the US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michèle Flournoy:break your ties with Hezbullah and Iran, and we will end the riots. Mostafa Zein of the knowledgeable Dar al Hayyat summed it up like this:
The United States has drafted a roadmap for the Syrian regime, so that it may emerge from its worsening crisis, suggesting that it holds the magic key to make the protesters leave the streets. Flournoy said: “Syria must distance itself from Iran and join the Gulf states, as well as move forward in the peace process with Israel”… The Syrian regime considers such a roadmap to be a “conspiracy” targeting it from within, after the failure of pressure on it from abroad.
As in the case of Qaddafi, the Syrian leader is not totally blameless. But, like Qaddafi, Bashar el Assad can make things better by trusting in the Syrian people, namely:
- By giving more freedom to the Syrian people and less to his Mukhabarat, the Internal Secret Service;
- By correcting an unjust distribution of wealth and government positions between the religious and ethnic communities of Syria (the minorities – Jews, Alawites, and Christians – have it too good at the expense of the Sunni majority);
- By allowing political activity beyond the moribund Baath party;
- By making peace with Muslim believers;
- By permitting economic and social mobility and allowing elites to fail.
These goals can be obtained without catastrophic cataclysms and so they should. Granted, the Syrians have become bored with their staple diet of rice and beans; they want more variety. However, this desire must be achieved without destroying the country.
Syria is needed for the Middle East: it is the centerpiece of Mashreq, the Fertile Crescent, the only state in the region not subdued by the US and Israel. It is the defender of Hezbullah and an important partner of Iran. Syria is the home of Hamas émigrés, home to hundreds of thousands of Palestinian and Iraqi refugees. Syria is the last refuge for the non-American Arab world. It is precious, and should be saved.
In Israel, there are two schools regarding Syria development: the conservatives and the adventurers. The conservatives say: we lived for a long time alongside the Assads, and it was safe; let us keep it this way. The adventurers say: let us undo Syria, break it to pieces, destroy Hezbollah, eliminate Iran’s forward base and make the world safe for a generation. Alarmingly, Netanyahu is developing more and more connections to adventurers. He may even try to attack Lebanon, thinking that Assad has his hands too full to get involved. However, such an attack might tempt Bashar el Assad to externalize his political problem by meeting their challenge. He may decide it is better to die a martyr in a war with the Zionist enemy than suffer the fate of Saddam and Qaddafi. David Hirst, the best British expert on the Middle East, prophesied about this war in his recent (2010) book Beware of Small States. This war may become a turning point for the Middle East, with far-reaching repercussions, including destruction of Israel.
There is a way out: let Turkey don the Ottoman mantle and guide the Middle East to safety. With Russian, Iranian and Chinese support, Turkey will be able to reassert its influence over its former provinces torn away by French and British armies in 1917. Regional problems should be solved regionally, without Western interference.