FREE TRADE COSTS BERLIN, NY MOST OF ITS INDUSTRIES

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shattered-green-houses-berlin-ny1

The devastation of Free Trade is obvious in my community which was thriving before this shibboleth shipping scheme was foisted upon  us for economic and political reasons.  Before the Doha Free Trade Rounds, businesses in Berlin, NY, were expanding.  Now, they are rapidly vanishing.  These events are totally connected!  This week, one of the insane trade negotiators struggles to figure out how he screwed up.  Of course, being stupid, he can’t figure out the obvious.  So I suppose it is time for him to tour my little town’s dead businesses.

 

Foreign Policy In Focus | The Failed Expectations of U.S Trade Policy

Robert Cassidy

We failed to address the underlying fundamental market distortions that skew the benefits toward the few while leaving the rest of the economy less well off. As George Soros, in a Bloomberg News interview on the financial crisis, recently said, “…the system, as it currently operates, is built on false premises.” The premise on which our trade agreements are negotiated is at best flawed, if not broken.

The next administration has to take a hard look at the trade agreements currently on the table – especially with South Korea – and ask: who benefits? The answers should lead to a fundamental reassessment of what needs to be included in those trade agreements so that the benefits flow to broader and more equitable segments of the economy.

Flawed?  Like when that criminal con man, Greenspan, told Congress that his economic theories had ‘flaws’?  Flaws that are fatal are not mere flaws: they are deadly viruses, deadly diseases.  They are FATAL FLAWS.  And US trade negotiators have made so many errors in working on trade deals, the mind just boggles.  It is one long, unending story of one disastrous deal after another, all of which, uniformly, destroyed our own base here in the US.  This uniform failure on all fronts, all the time can’t possibly be accidental.

 

Mr. Cassidy, just for example, seems to be literate.  He can read and write.  I bet, he also mastered basic addition and subtraction while in grade school.  Heavens, I bet he even knows how to multiply and divide!  And can use a pocket calculator if that is too difficult.  Then, I also bet, he knows how to look at charts and graphs.

 

So, the real question is, why is he and his host of similar idiots so stupid?  Eh?  What is this, anyway?  How can they possibly miss 40+ years of US trade DEFICITS?  Eh?  How?  I am flabbergasted.  Every year, these idiots blame someone aside from themselves.  The latest whipping boy is China, of course.  We accuse China of doing what nearly ALL of our trade partners are doing to us.  The Chinese ignore this.  Or they stop doing it but then prevent us from doing what we want to do.  We get the present impasse. 

 

I would dearly love to take Mr. Cassidy to tour the dying town of Berlin, NY.  A town he and his buddies devastated.  This week, Israel is bombing Gaza to smithereens.  But Israeli flower importers are building more and more greenhouses to raise the exact same flowers our own town used to raise in identical greenhouses.  But our greenhouses stand empty while Israel’s business grows, just for example.  Israel and Columbia where the US spends a fortune ‘fighting drug growers’ has utterly destroyed the Berlin, NY rose growing business.

 

The deals the US made over and over again were all designed to help other nations not just build businesses which is fine with me, but to build EXPORT businesses focused mainly on exporting to the US.  This is killing our nation.  The photo at the top of this story, for example, is the door of one of the newest and biggest greenhouses built here in Berlin just one decade ago.  It is not merely empty, it is being destroyed by snow, wind, rain and vandalism.

 

We may as well have planes dropping bombs on us.  Our community, which used to have thriving stores of every sort, is now nearly an economic ghost town and all of this has happened not 100 years ago but in the last decade.  Below is some parts of the US flower export/import markets published several years ago as the greatest damage to our native industry was being negotiated:

 

Tariff and Trade Agreement Terms:

In the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), chapters 1 through 97 cover 

all goods in trade and incorporate in the tariff nomenclature the internationally adopted 

Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System through the 6-digit level of product 

descriptionSubordinate 8-digit product subdivisions, either enacted by Congress or 

proclaimed by the President, allow more narrowly applicable duty rates; 10-digit 

administrative statistical reporting numbers provide data of national interestChapters 98 and 

99 contain special U.S. classifications and temporary rate provisions, respectively. The HTS 

replaced the Tariff Schedules of the United States (TSUS) effective January 1, 1989. 


Duty rates in the general subcolumn of HTS column 1 are normal trade relations rates; many 

general rates have been eliminated or are being reduced due to concessions resulting from 

the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. Column 1-general duty rates apply 

to all countries except those listed in HTS general note 3(b) (Cuba, Laos, and North Korea) 

plus Serbia and Montenegro, which are subject to the statutory rates set forth in column 2. 

Specified goods from designated general-rate countries may be eligible for reduced rates of 

duty or duty-free entry under  preferential tariff programs, as set forth in the special 

subcolumn of HTS rate of duty column 1 or in the general notes. If eligibility for special 

tariff rates is not claimed or established, goods are dutiable at column 1-general rates. The 

HTS does not list countries covered by a total or partial embargo. 


The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) affords nonreciprocal tariff preferences to 

designated beneficiary developing countries. The U.S. GSP, enacted in title V of the Trade 

Act of 1974 for 10 years and extended several times thereafter, applies to merchandise 

imported on or after January 1, 1976, and before the close of September 30, 2001. Indicated 

by the symbol “A”, “A*”, or “A+” in the special subcolumn, GSP provides duty-free entry 

to eligible articles the product of and imported directly from designated beneficiary 

developing countries (see HTS gen. note 4). Eligible products of listed sub-Saharan African 

countries may qualify for duty-free entry under the African Growth and Opportunity Act 

(AGOA) (see HTS gen. note 16) through September 30, 2008, as indicated by the symbol 

“D” in the special subcolumn; see subchapter XIX of chapter 98. 

As this official report notes back in 2003, ‘many general rates have been eliminated or are being reduced due to concessions resulting from the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations.‘  The US threw away the keys to our own front door and look at the vandalism this has caused!  The greenhouse below is virtually new.  It was used for only 4 years before being abandoned.  And the company ended up becoming an IMPORT company with its headquarters at the Albany International Airport.  Which was not very international until free trade turned it, like all our ports of entry, into a funnel to move foreign goods into domestic markets, and thus, kill our own industrial base.

shattered-greenhouse-roof-berlin-ny1

Back to the complete idiot who negotiated the death of one of our important industries in Berlin, NY:

 

Foreign Policy In Focus | The Failed Expectations of U.S Trade Policy

The beneficiaries of the agreement with China fall into two groups: multinational companies that moved to China and the financial institutions that financed those investments, trade flows, and deficits. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in China accelerated at a time when such investment to other parts of Asia was declining and, in 2001, even matched FDI to the United States. Sourcing from China, whether from direct investment or through licensing arrangements, has allowed companies to cut costs and increase profits, as reflected in increased corporate profits and the surge in the U.S. stock market.

Conversely, it is doubtful that the U.S. economy or its workers are better off. U.S. manufacturing jobs declined by more than 2.5 million since China joined the WTO in 2001. While services jobs increased during this period, with the exception of telecommunications, non-tradable jobs accounted for the most significant portion of that increase. Wages have been stagnant and real disposable income for three-quarters of U.S. households has been stable or declining. Only the top quartile of families has seen significant increases in real disposable income.

The beneficiaries of these trade agreements try to divert attention by arguing that our trade in services has increased or that our competitiveness has declined. Those arguments are simply diversions because they don’t explain why our exports of goods to countries that made no concessions increased more than our exports to China, which made significant tariff and non-tariff concessions. Such arguments also fail to explain why our imports of goods from China increased more than our imports from other major trading partners. Is there any wonder that the people on Main Street think that trade agreements do not work?

Did this negotiator, who finally, after many years of the US screwing around, finally throw down the gauntlet and at an international meeting, did he yell, ‘I am going outside to the demonstrators and I will tell them, they are right!’  No.  Did he come back to America and announce, ‘I am a traitor to this nation and all my fellow negotiators are traitors.’  No.  Did he go to the New York Times and tell them, ‘I am going to picket your paper until you put me in the news.’  Heh.  Of course not.

 

Instead of taking the fight to the streets, he collected his paychecks.  Now, in some small alarm, he is admitting he was part of the fraud.  Geeze, so the multinational companies and banks made out like bandits with the trade deals?  DUH big time, buddy boy!  And what, in heaven’s name, were all those anti-free trade demonstrators bellowing?  I suspect he heard the uproar since they mobbed these meetings as best as possible.  

 

No more, of course!  Severe, brutal police repression took care of that troublesome mob.  Now, there is dead silence.  Or rather, a total collapse in global business.  My town’s Main Street which is Greenhollow Road and Rt. 22, is dead or dying.  Rapidly.  And we are not happy with this.  People were pleased to get cheap stuff from the rest of the world.  But this joy turned rapidly into alarm as they saw jobs either vanish or pay collapse.  The greenhouses, before giving up entirely, dropped wages so low, only probably illegal aliens ended up working there, living in a group house.

 

http://hotdocs.usitc.gov/docs/pubs/industry_trade_summaries/pub3580.pdf

Virtually no fresh cut flowers were imported into the United States prior to 1960. At that time, it was difficult to transport perishable products such as flowers over long distances and large-scale production of cut flowers largely was limited to the United States and Europe. In the mid-1960s researchers at Colorado State University identified Bogota, Colombia, as
the ideal place in the Western Hemisphere to cultivate standard carnations due to excellent year-round growing conditions, favorable wage rates, and relatively low investment costs.

 At about the same time, first generation jet aircraft such as the Boeing 727 were becoming too inefficient for use in passenger travel and their freight rates were reduced for use as cargo planes. These factors, along with the cooperation of the local government in Bogota, led to the development of the export-oriented cut flower industry in Colombia.

Similarly, governments in Africa, Asia, and other Latin American countries have encouraged flower industries in their countries as a mechanism to employ large numbers of semiskilled workers and to attract U.S. dollars to their economies. By the early 1980s, offshore cut flower production began to overtake U.S. domestic production, particularly of chrysanthemums, carnations, and roses. Greater supplies of cut flowers at ever lower prices also had the effect of increasing the overall demand for cut flowers in the U.S. market.

 

picture-213

We can see from the table here that fresh cut flower production in the US declined.  Today, the decline is tremendous.  More flowers are sold and fewer flowers are from the US.  I can see the US struggling with a high importation deficit from energy products.  But for flowers?  Something used as decorations?  To run a rising deficit to fund flowers is pure madness.  Completely stupid!  Back in the 1980’s, trade negotiators could clearly see that flower sales from imports were already threatening our economy.  So what did they do?

 

More trade deals that increased this dangerous trade!  You see, we cannot afford the luxury of cheap foreign flowers if this means we destroy our economic base!  Below is a photo of the inside of one of the many abandoned greenhouses showing its long beds standing idle.

dead-greenhouses-berling-ny1

When a country is under assault from trade, it behooves the negotiators to work out deals where they can restrict UNNECESSARY imports.  We certainly have zero reason to import ANY food.  Japan and England must import food because they are small, dense islands.  The US has one of the world’s mightiest agricultural bases on earth.  And we import massive amounts of food we do not need at all.  Here, below, is one of the very few working farms left within a 100 mile radius of my own town which used to have many working farms, nearly all of which have totally vanished:

slum-dairy-farm-chatam-ny

It is a SLUM!  This is what price depression is doing to my community!  The Great Depression began long before 1930 in the US farming community.  This depression began with the floating currency and has only picked up steam and is worse and worse, to the point now that most of our farms are dead and gone.  I remember the media and Congress fretting about the ‘small American farmer’ then they all went off on the ‘free trade’ RR and off the cliff went the remaining farmers.

 

I see plenty of hand wringing but no one at the top is being particularly confrontational, are they?  This trade negotiator who wrote about his crimes isn’t running around, screaming.  He thinks, all he has to do is muse about things and all will be worked out.  But this is a false hope.  One has to actively fight to change what one has ruined.  He has to go much further than I, a person who has opposed free trade for many years, to undo the damage he has done to my own community, to this nation.

 

Foreign Policy In Focus | The Failed Expectations of U.S Trade Policy

Similar arguments can be made for our “free trade” agreements. For example, Canada fosters oligopolies and in some provinces, monopolies that restrict both foreign trade and internal trade. Like China, South Korea, which recently concluded its FTA with the United States, has notoriously undervalued its currency, as automakers will attest. In addition, most countries have value-added taxes that are rebated on their exports to the United States, while our exports receive no such treatment because our federal tax system relies on income and corporate taxes.

This is also an example of ‘knowing that is wrong but not able to understand how to fix it’ syndrome.  So, our trade partners use VAT—value added taxes—to greatly reduce consumerism?  HAHAHA.  Well, DUH!  Japan even tried, while pretending to be helpless with a depression, to raise this tax just two years ago.  The beleaguered consumers there revolted so the plan was dropped.  But they all do this, all but the US.  This is why we have a trade deficit from hell.  

 

Lots of cheap knick nacks and even very expensive knick nacks.  But no jobs and no future.  Anyone calling for a VAT tax is told to jump in the lake.  Our trade rivals also have much higher gas taxes.  Again: DUH!  We have to imitate them if we insist on ‘free trade’.  Our refusal to hold foreign currencies in our corrupt little Federal Reserve FOREX funds, our refusal to tax energy at the same level as rivals, our refusal to have stiff consumer taxes has doomed our economy, millions of jobs were lost, well-paying jobs are vanishing and we are now heading into a depressionary spiral we can’t escape except by destroying our currency.

 

Oh, and that certainly will fix our trade deficit!  Monetary suicide.  What a fabulous solution.  Total chaos means no trade deficits.  Great going, trade negotiator traitors!

* FEEL FREE TO EMAIL ME AT emeinel@fairpoint.net

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35 Comments

Filed under Free Trade

35 responses to “FREE TRADE COSTS BERLIN, NY MOST OF ITS INDUSTRIES

  1. Jeremy/Nashville

    Places are closing here in Nashville too. The shop I am working at is closing within the next 8 weeks. I am not surprised about this because our business has been ruined by the failing economy. Thank goodness my partner is an engineer! I want out of retail…so I think I might go back to school and pursue a different line of work. I have noticed that local mom-&-pop shops have closed, but also several upscale shops too. I dread seeing how bad things will get over the next 6 months.

  2. Bear of Little Brain

    It has been the same here, in West Sussex, UK. There was a fairly extensive glasshouse crop industry. There was even a government Glasshouse Crops Research Institute about ten miles from me. Maggie did for that. The glasshouses were intermingled with normal farming. Sussex is one of the most fertile farming areas of the UK. So they’ve been building tacky little housing boxes all over it. Anything for a quick buck/pound/euro/shekel. Now they fly in green beans with no taste and roses with no scent from Kenya. Ho, hum. 😦
    ~
    Watched “Koyaanisqatsi” (on DVD) last night. The first time for many years. Doesn’t leave you feeling good.

  3. swindler

    Here in Horsham we have a £1, 99p, 89p shops, all busy. Horsham is a upper middleclass market town in W. Sussex

  4. WNC Observer

    Elaine:

    During the free trade debates, the argument was made that according to economic theory, the nation should be better off IN THE AGGREGATE with free trade. Maybe so. What they (intentionally) failed to tell people, though, is that while the nation might be better off in the aggregate, there was no guarantee that EVERYONE would benefit equally. In fact, it was quite possible, even probable, that there would be losers as well as winners. Even worse, it was quite likely that there would only be a few people who were very big winners, and most people would end up being net losers. I saw this at the time, and it has been no surprise to me that this is exactly what happened. If they had been honest with the American people and truthly told them what they really could expect, then I very much doubt that the politicians would have been able to successfully ram free trade through.

    There is one thing that might have made some sense and restored some balance to the scheme: the big gains of the winning few could have been taxed, and the funds distributed to the losing majority, especially to those that lost jobs due to free trade. Instead, what we got were tax cuts on the rich at exactly the time when tax INCREASES were needed. Meanwhile, a small fraction of those who lost their jobs got a pitifully small “Trade Adjustment Allowance” which didn’t come anywhere close to making them whole. Most of the victims of free trade ended up getting nothing.

    To this day, you won’t find anything about this in the mainstream media. Even most of the radical and alternative media don’t seem to get it.

    At this point, we are so late that I’m not sure what can be done to reset the balance.

    By the way, seeing your abandoned greenhouse, I am wondering if that couldn’t be reused to raise vegetable seedlings, or maybe even vegetables like tomatoes year round for the local market? Right this moment it probably won’t fly financially. However, one the price of oil resumes going up and shipping costs become more expensive, this might have possibilities.

  5. Zorro

    I’ll never forget the picture of President Clinton standing
    in front of his desk with all the former presidents behind
    him…..asking for Congress to pass NAFTA. It was a win-win
    for everybody. A majority of Americans were against it.

    Our trade deficit in 1994 when NAFTA passed Congress
    was $182 Billion. Then it grew fast. Now its over $700
    Billion for 2008.

    http://www.americaneconomicalert.org/ticker_home.asp

  6. PLovering

    This Russkie professor predicted the 2010 economic collapse of the United States in 1998. His prescience is listened to very seriously these days.
    .
    Both the Russkie and foreign central banking Lizards expect an economic implosion here in the United States. The Lizards plan for a controlled implosion, with chaos masked by troops in the streets. They call this “resolved” dissent.
    .
    OTOH the Russkie professor expects an economic implosion plus a Lizard implosion. He expects the United States to fragment into regions. California, for instance, wanting to print its own money makes sense.
    .
    Foreign central bankers in control of our money supply are the absolute cause of our economic chaos. And not by accident, either. Closing the FED and regaining control of our money supply would put our nation back on the road to recovery.
    .
    The only other alternative is for our Military to take down the criminal banking enterprise, and to remove the Lizard influence from government, banking, MSM, and education.
    .
    Meanwhile, the Russians, Chinese, Arabs, and others enjoy front row seats for our pending economic implosion. Probably dividing up the spoils already.
    .
    FHIW, I entirely agree with the Russkie timeline.
    .
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123051100709638419.html

  7. WNC Observer

    Panarin doesn’t have it quite right, but he is on to something. The Federal Government could be dissolved, totally legally, and far quicker than just about anyone can imagine.

    It is right there in Article V. The Congress MUST convene a Constitutional Convention if requested by 2/3 of the state legislatures. Any amendments proposed by the Constitution Convention become part of the Constituion when ratified by 3/4 of the states. What is not generally realized is that when a Constitutional Convention has been called, ANYTHING can be on the table – including the termination of the U.S. Constitution.! How? Simple: Propose an amendment that termanates the U.S. Constitution within such and such a date after ratification, with all sovereign powers devolving back to the states.

    Think this is outlandish? Think again. Guess how our PRESENT constitution was formed? By a called constitutional convention, originally intended to just tinker with the PREVIOUS constition (yes, we did have one, it was called the Article of Confederation), but which decided to scrap the whole thing and try something else instead. It is my considered opinion that the deligates at the convention intentionally worded Article V exactly as they did because they wanted to leave open the possibility of something similar being done in the future. In other words, they left us an “out”.

    BTW, if the hotheads in Dixie had been told to cool off and follow this procedure instead, they could have ended up with their independence without a shot being fired. The civil war happened because the WAY they tried to seceed was illegal – they were acting unilaterally, when the constitution clearly provides a way for a mutually consensual split.

    The amendment to terminate the constitution would actually have to be something pretty detailed and extensive. There would have to be some resolution as to which states got what federal assets; I am assuming that the creditors of the US government get stiffed as far as any liabilities are concerned.

    This last statement above provides the answer to the question: OK, maybe this is theoretically possible, but WHY would this ever be done. It would and will be done when the states decide that the US Government is too costly to be worth maintaining any longer. When they decide that they and their citizens would be better off scrapping the Federal Government and freeing themselves to make other arrangements (presumably some regional federations would follow), then that is when you might see something like this actually happen.

    We have moved a lot closer to that point over the past few months. When it does happen, it could happen so quickly that it would make your head spin: maybe a couple of months to get 2/3 of legislatures to request the convention, another couple of months for congress to implement (and a direct appeal to the Supremes if they drag their feet, with the Supremes having no choice but to uphold the clear language of the constitution), another month or so of deliberations, and maybe a few months to round up enough ratifications. It could all be done in less than a year. And the thing is: there isn’t a thing – Constitutionally – that the President, or the Congress, or the Supremes, could do to stop it. Only if the President effectively stages a coup d’etat and rules as a dictator could this be thwarted. Of course, in that case the constitution is just as much of a dead letter.

  8. emsnews

    If we split up, it will be due to bankruptcy of the US government. Sort of like Yugoslavia or the Soviet Union.

  9. DrKrbyLuv

    Any nation that subjugates the control and creation of its money to private banks relinquishes its national sovereignty and effectively becomes a client state.
    .
    Neither a democracy nor a republic may exist when the greatest power of the nation is held in the private hands of a few.
    .
    And so it that we are a no longer a nation – we are cows in the barn of bankers – milked until our utters are dried from all nutrition.
    .
    There is no one to stand for our interests yet alone plan for our prosperity. We are people without a nation left to be exploited.
    .
    The NWO banking bastards are over-reaching…they are unwittingly stoking the fires of revolution and I for one will welcome it when that day comes.

  10. WNC, I would say the constitution is all ready dead. We have selective enforcement of the law and an executive branch that has broken the law so many times it makes your head spin. It’s pure corruption at this point. We need transparency and a strong judicial system to have any hope of bringing the rule of law and the constitution back. Obama unfortunately doesn’t appear to be up to the cause (his SEC head nomination is a good example).
    I, for one, would vote for disbanding the united states however since the thieves own the federal hen house I see no chance of that happening. It’s harder to bribe 50 state legislatures than 1 federal congress and 1 federal senate. (not that the state legislatures aren’t corrupt as well!)
    I think the focus needs to be on bringing trust back into the system and we really do need to “arrest them all” as ems has stated many times.
    will that happen? Well I’ve been called a pessimist many times before, but I fail to see much room for optimism here. In fact I’d venture a few guesses- the drug war will never end…the cia and the like need the money…we will never get health care…aig and the like enjoy making a profit off of your health…we will always have an enemy to fight real or imagined… the military industrial complex demands it… and much to elaine’s chagrin, we will not erect trade tariffs or barriers…the corporations who rely on world trade will not allow it. Now if all were transparent and corruption free would see the drug war as a failure and end it, we would see the us has the most expensive and worst performing health care in the developed world and change it immediately, war would be revealed as the complete waste of human resources it is, and trade would only commense on a level playing field. Fixing the corrupt media would help in all regards, which is why blogs like this one are so important and also increasingly popular as more realize the media has been bought and sold by the ruling wealthy class.
    Just my 2 cents, probably preaching to the converted…but oh well 🙂

  11. Impatient Patriot

    Treason season
    Lets check out the checking accounts of the ne’er-do-wells.

  12. BigKev

    Seems to me the US is headed for some tough times ahead. Observations from afar (Australia) would point to the US being a war mongering country – on average a war every couple of years for the past 100.
    When I was over there in 2005 I spoke to some folks who believed the war in Iraq was all about keeping the terrorosts busy somewhere “not over here”. The problem is, pre 911, the greatest terrorist threat was coming from within – Oklahoma bombing – by self professed patriots.
    If the Bush/Cheney think tank were really smart enough to engineer a diversion of home grown terrorism then it’s only a matter of time until it plays itself out.
    BTW – here in Oz we clamped down heavily on gun ownership and tightened up the laws. We now have one of the lowest gun murder rates in the western world. Mind you knife murder rates are up but who would you rather be running from – some idiot with a knife or a gun.

  13. emsnews

    I use guns.

  14. BigKev

    We didn’t stop people with appropriate needs from owning and using guns.
    I assume your need to use guns is appropriate.

  15. BigKev

    I also used guns when I was younger – most enjoyable pastime.
    When a crazed gunman killed 35 innocent men women and children with high powered weapons in Port Arthur, Australia said enough was enough.
    I feel no less safe for having destroyed or surrendered firearms.
    If anything, with inquisitive sons I think more so.

  16. BigKev

    What I was suggesting is that the whole issue of US gun ownership is tied up with what was a mis-trust of the Government. The only ones really holding the US Gov to account and being agrieved at what you document here on your blog were the militia.
    They may be crazy and you couldn’t agree with their means of protest, but they have conveniently gone quiet since the new enemy arrived (nebulous but dangerous “Terrorists”)
    Seems they were also quiet during the Cold War – every government needs a common enemy to keep the restless natives focussed elswhere.

  17. nah

    Incredible piece on deflation and the historical complexity in getting rid of it, thereby establishing a growth trend. Interesting viewpoint of how reinforcing deflation presents obscure decimal issues with an unhealthy economy as enormous as the US. Definitely keep you eyes on unemployment and CPI we may not come out of this as soon as Bernanke may hope ‘which is why the limitless reckless crap purchases’. Does strengthen the responsible lending / pool of commodities dollar standard argument ‘risk is for fools and manipulators’. Lame sittin’ watchin’ how the system of finance ‘really’ works.
    .

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-53565441845289277&q=nuclear+fision&total=185&start=10&num=10&so=0&type=search&plindex=0
    .
    The Five Hundred Dollar Burger

  18. openly hidden

    nothing can change until ordinary people can see that they are being manipulated constantly by … who? money, power, privilege. and we are to regard these people as representing america herself! we are taught so.

    IMHO, nothing can change until regular common people can stop being manipulated. i don’t know what sarah palen stood for particularly, and i didn’t vote for her, but i couldn’t help notice according to the media that tells us how to think basically how “stupid” she must be for not coming from one of the centers of established power. nascar rednecks must be stupid, racist, and inbred. people in the country are stupid. people who actually can make something or fix something with their hands must be stupid. hunters must be stupid animals themselves. snobbery is a most common thing among the little people it seems to me and it is used! i have been a worker all my life and although never politically correct, i have only rarely met or heard a real racist out here in hicktown….poor working class women are the only ones who kept most of the lower class families together and fed even, and their men know it, but you would never know that reading the city media as they manipulate us all to keep us seperate and divided. the powers that be need for “the people” to be divided and suspicious of each other and easily manipulated. i think the stupidest thing the left ever did was make fun of common folk doing their duty as they saw it and getting by as best they can. calling us “trailer trash” is the most counterproductive thing the “intellectual” left can do is make enemies of the very people who could put them over the top in the wet ass hour. imho.

  19. David

    BigKev:

    Here in the US, gun ownership and gun control is really a non-issue that is often made into an issue to move blocks of one issue voters from one political camp into another.

    Still it’s a non-issue. Let me explain.

    Just because some redneck owns a semi-auto rifle that looks like an M-16 does not mean that the military, the governmnt or the police really worry much about him. They have real, full auto M-16s (those things fire 20 bullets in two seconds) and a vast array of other high-tech weapons (grenade launchers and heavy machine guns)that will easily obliterate any attempt at rebellion in short order.

    So politicians posture a lot over gun control, but they aren’t really affraid of a rebellion by citizens carrying sporting firearms or “look alike” military firearms…not at all.

    Most thinking citizens know that open rebellion would be total, insane suicide. Covert terrorism is what governments fear most nowadays as evidenced by draconian laws they have passed against this. A citizen can disappear forever for just thinking about this.

    As far as gun ownership is concerned, however, thinking citizens who do own guns also know that private gun ownership does deter outright oppression by officials and others to a very, very limited extent.

    As often happens under oppressive governments around the world, when police or death squads come for targeted citizens in the night, if they are met with deadly resistance, these oppressors are a little more inclined to refrain from doing this unless they have absolutely no choice. In this case, gun ownership might be worthwhile, but to a limited extent.

    Criminals do use guns, and they do kill people, but, then, in the US, there is a vast “for profit” criminal justice system made up of lawyers, bail bondsmen, courts and private prisons owned by politicians. It’s a huge industry, and if US crime declines, a lot of people will lose money, and a lot of law enforcement officers and prison guards and support personnel will be unemployed. In our failing economy, these are some of the more stable occupations…says a lot for us doesn’t it?

    And gun safety is important, and should be regulated. Everything is a trade-off, and it’s an expensive trade off as far as life and liberty is concerned.

    Still, if I am faced with a knife fight, I want a large gun in my hand.

  20. emsnews

    In all countries, revolutions and rebellions work only if they attract large numbers of military people who then turn on their bosses.

  21. openly hidden,
     
    We probably understand exactly what you are saying here. For example, those of us who slaved in the factories of the industrial East Coast are similar. A vast mind game is being played. The academic people are supposedly “liberal,” but they were merely fed a mind set, and never thought about it all that much. This is true for everyone, except for a very few, who climb out of whatever box they placed in and begin to think for themselves. The academics will mostly never accept it, but the truth is there are just as many independent thinkers who never listened to the professors as there are who did.
     
    Really, you (and everyone) should rent all the “Matrix” film series. It seems like far-fetched, science fiction, but it’s closer to the truth than what the rest of the herd can imagine. If some people want to think there are educated, sophisticated people who know vastly more than the uneducated worker bees, they can live that reality. BUT THEY ARE ALL STILL INSIDE THE MATRIX!
     
    This blog involves a lot of readers who began the journey out of the box. Away from the matrix. Once you do that, the “cultural background” issue begins to fade. It is all a vast fantasy. Nothing is what it seems to be. There are many stumbling blocks.
     
    All the sinners, all the preachers, all the professors, and horses, and kings men, etc., all of that is INSIDE THE MATRIX. Perhaps it has become apparent that everything that has been taken for granted was always a big lie. It wasn’t even a lie. It was just a Matrix dream. You may not ever leave the Matrix completely, but you still might be interested in learning about the emptiness of the Matrix dreams.
     
    Knowledge is a two-edged sword. It make some smarter; it makes some stupider. Please don’t waste any of your life worrying about whether it’s important to be “sophisticated.” In the end, no one will care. Even if they did, it would not matter.
     
    Just my two cents.

  22. OC

    Blues,

    We fell in love with our matrix; only those outside of our matrix can see its’ flaws…like the Buddha said…once u know u are in the matrix, u need to break your own false illusions one strand at a time and eventually, u see the truth and the truth will set u free!

  23. Warner

    Canada is in just as bad shape as the US. Remove oil, gas, and other resources from the economy and we have been declining for the last decade. Our only solice is that the federal gov’t has been much more fiscally responsible compared to the U.S. There is a little room left to manouver, but not much.

  24. David

    OC and Blues:

    What Blues is talking about is disillusionment where the light bulb suddenly goes on and things become crystal clear for a moment…BAM!!!. And I agree with him. You don’t need a long formal education for this to happen or to see truth. It can happen when you are standing at a machine in the factory, letting you mind ramble along and suddenly..BAM!!! Or it can happen to an intellectual as he/she is reading a book.
    _____
    My old dad who was forced by circumstances to quit school at age 14 had a good bullshit filter that made some sense to me. He would listen to someone for awhile, and then ask himself, “is this a resonable talking man [person]?”
    _____
    However, we have all go a little further than that and realize that what Hannibal Lector told Clarice Starling in the movie “Silence of The Lambs” is a key to finding truth. Lector (played by Anthony Hopkins) tells Clarice (Jody Foster) to read Marcus Aurelius, the Roman Emperor.
    ______
    What old Marcus really said is that when questioning any set of reasonable sounding thought processes, we cannot know truth until we know that all of the logical thinking is based on a truthful foundation or first thought or “first principle.”
    _____
    If we start with bullshit, no matter how careful and correctly we think though something, we end up with bullshit.
    ______
    Old Marcus was saying if a person is given a bullshit statement by a bullshitter, and is made to believe it, then the bullshitter can use sound, logical reasoning to lead his or her thinking nearly anywhere the bullshitter wants it to go. This is where intellectuals and the uneducated alike get the wool pulled over their eyes by bullshitters…and propagandhists.
    _____
    The Buddha also knew this (after all he was an ancient prince) and he used a different approach in teaching followers to search for truth…Just let go, through meditation, of all thoughts and illusions and ramblings of the mind, and then when you awaken, trust your instincts and the truth will become clear for you…in other words clean out the bullshit rolling around in your brain, and trust your instincts and you will see truth…and this works too.

    This is also probably what happens when a person prays or “turns things over” to “God” or the other mythological deity of his or her choice)
    _____
    Mahatma Ghandi was probably more correct than anyone about searching for truth. He believed that God is Truth. He said that truth is an ever receding proposition. We get clear glimpses of truth (we see through the bullshit clearly for a moment) but then truth slips away from us and we can’t see it and we have to search for it over and over and over again.
    _____
    For me, this appears to make a little sense.
    _____
    Sorry that I’m not smart enough to explain what I know about all of this with simpler words, and it took me at least 50 years to figure this much out since I’m kinda slow too.

  25. GK

    Yes, the human brain is essentially INFINITELY powerful. When designing complex systems the key is to load up your mind with all the things that it needs to do, all the problems you have found so far, go to sleep and WHAM your brain will solve everything for you.
    —————————————————————
    However, the mind has one strength which is also its weakness which is that it does not care whether it is working on an imaginary or real system. The human mind does not care if it is designing vector graphics for a Disney Cinderella movie, detonators for a Nuclear fusion weapon or attempting to figure out what is really happening and who has the real power in the world.
    —————————————————————
    The key to controlling humanity is teach inquiring minds to only expand incrementally upon the existing dogma and to produce a prodigious amount of false information to clog the natural human intuition with noisy yet attractive disinformation.
    ————————————————–
    So in universities we read what the professors wrote and learn to comment cleverly on it and are so rewarded. In the news and media we are bombarded by clever commentary and flooded by appeals to our base instincts.
    ————————————————–
    Speaking of designing systems, who is the F****** idiot at WordPress that designed a comments system does not let people put Return characters between paragraphs in comments?
    ————————————————–
    Finally, if anyone thinks they are any anywhere near the outside of the matrix while they are typing their innermost thoughts into the internet designed and provided to you by DARPA, you have got to be kidding me. It is a noble idea, but we are still so, so, so far away from the edges of the box.
    ————————————————-
    Question: Does google compile a lifetime dossier for each person in the world using their system?

    Question: How did google founders get permission to park their private Boeing jumbo Jet at NASA Ames field near their headquarters?

  26. BigKev

    Only military turning on their bosses? Like Mandela in South Africa and Gorbachev in Russia eh?

  27. David

    Bigkev:

    Think it though a little more. Those systems had already crumbled and needed restarting with leaders the people would trust. In both instances, they were not opposed because everyone, from the bottom to the top, realized this.

  28. openly hidden

    you said: In all countries, revolutions and rebellions work only if they attract large numbers of military people who then turn on their bosses.

    Comment by emsnews — December 30, 2008

    in this administration, “the military” has changed so much. what are all the private contractors….blackwater? …. fighting as mercenaries change things now. they outnumber regular forces in places now. do special-operations even. how about some national guard unit serving three tours in iraq? are these now competing centers of potential military power. and what is the taliban for instance if they are not basically unsophisticated, obsolete armed civilian army now. and what about a military that relies on so many “foreign” members now.

    david. i spent at least 50 years looking for “the truth” for i always thought something must be wrong…it all can’t be me. amazingly enough, me spending the interesting part of my life like this seems to have helped my “career”! hahaha. the truth sucks i think….maybe the baby jesus doesn’t love us so much. just yesterday i was reading during the french revolution, 170,000 frenchies were murdered for i guess supporting disobedient priests. men,women, and childred were stripped naked, tied together, and drowned in a river. what kind of person obeys orders to do that i ask. my maternal grandfather was dropped off in new york by his own dad when he was 15 all alone right before the russian revolution. his dad went back and my grandpas entire extended family of mostly farmers then disappeared. maybe the truth has nothing to do with love at all. i think we are here to learn our lessons. and i wouldn’t be surprised about anything horrible anymore. and the farmstead and the greenhouse was horrible for me to look at. how can this be i wonder. f*** me, i will never smile again.

  29. “f*** me, i will never smile again.”
    :
    I doubt that big time, but i suppose it is a possibility! :mrgreen:
    :
    Peace openly hidden – I like your style.
    Ken

  30. emsnews

    The reason why so many people came to America was to escape religious and imperial wars. Still is true today, incidentally. And economical reasons. But then, this invasion from the outside ended up utterly destroying the natives who were totally stunned by the sudden appearance of desperado strangers seeking to take over.

  31. Come on over to good-ole NC and we’ll play a game of bridge (or any card game for that matter) together at the table. It will be fun.
    :
    Signing off on the 30th – I’m sure glad I got the comment to the agency in – the deadline was approaching!
    :
    Peace,
    Ken

  32. Paul S

    BigKev: You may be interested to know that in my home state, we have just completed 5 years of having a concealed carry law (about 34 other states have similar laws). This means that a citizen–after taking training– is allowed to carry a firearm (handgun) at any time. On his/her person, in his/her car. A study was done to determine the concealed carry laws effect on crime. Result? Zero negative effects. The homicide rate and other violent crime rates did NOT go up. What does this actually mean? It means what supporters of concealed carry laws have been saying all along: the criminal element ignores gun laws. Washington DC has very severe restrictions on guns. Washington DC is frequently the murder capital of the WORLD. New York City. Same thing. Detroit is also in the running for the title Murder capital, as is other cities such as Atlanta GA. High murder rates and severe gun laws can and often do go hand in hand. Things in the cities tend to only improve with longer prison terms for violent offenders. And in NO WAY do I advocate violence, but it is NOT advisable to bring a knife to a gunfight. True, dead is dead,but you need to match any potential adversary in firepower. It is also instructive to look below the surface at the homicide figures in the United States. Nearly 49% of homicide victims are black, nearly 95% of whom are killed by other blacks. This is Politically Incorrect to point this out, but the figures are accurate.

  33. I am unable to understand this post. But well some points are useful for me.

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