OT but a welcome bit of brightness

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David Hare-Scott wrote:

no. i think deflation or steady state on prices is as preferable to some people as inflation is to others. i think the policy of pushing the system to have some inflation is actually destructive in the long term, but the governments/social tinkerers at present like to hide all sorts of inefficiencies by using this. also it is a transfer of wealth indirectly (not very efficiently either) from savers to debtors (usually this means from the elderly to the young).
the crap results are crap because the system is crap front loaded from the start. garbage in, garbage out.
as for sticking to any one point, heh... i'm in a rambly mood tonight.

but it isn't the capitalist system that makes hyperinflation, it is the governments and the managers of the money supply that abuse their powers and then the reaction of sane people to that abuse.
riots are a whole different matter, a response to injustice in some cases is the desire to correct the injustice.
i couldn't give you any system other than complete behavior and emotional control which eliminates riots or unsatisfactory outcomes to some people.

i don't know if it really is a side track to point out that one of the possible crappy outcomes of tinkering is prolonged pain and poor economic performance. it isn't a hard science any more than medicine is. the Japanese real-estate bubble, when it finally burst, is pretty much still on-going in being corrected. they've dragged their fixes out for close to 15 years and they've pretty much had the poor economy, market and close to a depression as a result.
i think in the future many economists will call that the Japanese Great Depression.

that capitalism requires profit? well how many times can i disagree with that as it's pretty clear to me that the system doesn't magically stop when companies go non-profit or have a bad year. even in the worst parts of the Great Depression there were still companies in business, there were still people buying and selling things. it really wasn't a problem of capitalism, but many failed policies and the lack of banking regulations. then about 80 years later we ignored the lesson and made banking regulations too lax and once again the economy took a severe hit, but in that mess there were a lot of opportunities for the smart person willing to take risks.

no, i only claim the system keeps working. it is a dynamic system that also has many conflicting forces just like there are many different actors with varying degrees of influence.
i suspect the future is going to be full of many unsatisfied people. we're not a species geared towards contentment. it's not a skill that is taught, valued or explored by many. i think i've done fairly well on that count though, perhaps others can learn from what i'm doing...

i think you ignore the fact that for the most part actual production of real things is a very minor part of capitalism these days. i.e. the values have already shifted. most people could be considered unemployed or under-employed because most of what they do is shuffle information, provide entertainment to others, they really aren't producing tangible things. there are millions of workers who simply have given up looking for work. anyone over 50 has a very difficult time. these people aren't included in the unemployment statistics in the USoA unless you happen to find someone who's really looking at the whole trend. that is just one example of how the system shifts as the values shift. this has happened several times in my life-time. i don't expect this process to disappear.
(for a good example of how the current numbers are being jiggered take a listen to a program from This American Life called Trends that was on about a month ago)

i don't make that claim either. i've been a student of the markets and history to know better. the only argument i'm making is that the system continues to function without growth. we've had many periods of deflation or stagnation and in those cases the markets worked, people bought and sold things and the world did not end. yes, it hurt some people and was painful, but that doesn't show that the system didn't function. what it did show is that people don't normally have any long-term thinking for retirement or very much discipline when it comes to savings and investing.

we have a government that has been running on debt for eons, and it's still chugging along. we have quite a few companies (public and private, non-profit or not) and organizations that will continue along quite fine even if they continue to lose money for a period of years.
i do agree that the speed of things has greatly increased, but that negative also has a positive in that the whole system can react to new values much more quickly. we are building a world-wide system because the kinds of problems we are now having to solve are world-wide. not that i'm saying it is perfect by far. there's a lot to be said for needing better regulations and some stops in place for when it oscillates too far out of kilter. people who put in automatic trading are simply nuts as far as i'm concerned.

no, there is no assumption of orderly because you are talking about people here. people panic and freak out over all sorts of things. all i assume is that the system continues to function.
i agree with you about the lack of many people to plan for the future. i don't know how this is going to play out. it may not be very pretty, that i do agree with. yet, through it all there will be economic activity that continues. it won't be based upon resources which no longer exist. it will be reflecting possibilities of exploration for new resources and also likely increasing values of recycling technologies and work in that area.
the longer term, simply put, is very similar to what happens if you read about the history of science and some of the really long-fought dragged out disagreements. the scientists died out and the rest of the scientific community went on with what actually appeared to be working. they still don't have the full answer in many areas of science so in effect there are many avenues still open for arguing about physics and cosmology and ... this is what will be happening with respect to climate change deniers. eventually they die out and are replaced by more aware people.
in the USoA a great number of farmers are quite old and will be retiring. some of that land will be put to use by younger people who have a better idea of how to do things to preserve the topsoil and produce food in ways that don't rely upon so much inputs. it may take 100-200 years, but it will happen. it's just how it goes. farmers who destroy the land will eventually be forced out of business. then there will be a chance for remediation. techniques exist for pretty much any circumstance if you have the time and patience.

i'd say that you didn't live through the Crusades in the Middle East or many other times of rapid change. we're in for it. no doubt. i still say that the capitalist system will continue on in some form or another and it won't require growth. it just requires people buying and selling. that's not faith. that's facts. people trade things for other things. as long as people exist they're not going to stop trading. i don't understand where you come up with the idea that entire economic system disappears. we have plenty of examples from history that show that empires rise and fall, but trading/commerce/markets/money/exchanges/etc. all continue. for many years after the effective end of the Roman Empire in Europe they still used the Roman coins and tables of values for many purposes. it worked well enough and so it went on.

no, i'm simply stating that it's pretty clear that economies continue to function even when they are not growing. we've had recessions and depressions yet the economy still worked. yes, it wasn't what everyone desired, but it didn't vanish either. what did happen is that new values were created and then the market follows those forces as people act on the new information and make different decisions. it's not hand-waving away when we have plenty of historical examples.
if you want to see the most recent example look at how the shift in the world economy has gone from manufacturing goods to the information and services. what it took was people putting enough value on information and entertainment. the change happened.
a great deal can be said that this is a temporary change and at some point in the future there will be some return to a more reality driven system. i sure hope so. in the meantime we have the system that reflects the values of the people in a large part if they continue to stick their heads in the sand and consume more than the planet can support then there will be a backlash, a collapse and a great deal of pain and likely some wars, death, diseases, starvation, etc. all through that there will still be a market, there will still be trading and there will still be losses.
constant economic growth reported right now is often false if you actually figured in costs of the pollution, destruction of the environment, diseases, wars, debt, etc.
if you really want to get critical, go there and do the analysis. it's all manipulated by governments bent on ignoring the known costs.

that is where values come in, and those values drive the choices and those choices drive the market (all to some extent, it's not perfect, there's conflicts and false information).
right now the values needed for a sustainable future are not widespread enough that all the people carry them and act on them. but as time continues the older population dies out and the newer population carries on with better information. it may not be fast enough in many cases and there's going to be a big mess in terms of wrecked infrastructure and changed coastlines and losses in land/topsoil, but eventually the system does correct itself, as a closed system, if we're going to survive, it's a certainty that is how it goes. how many lives lost, how much damage is done to the other species on the planet and how that may cause further collapses is hard to say with certainty, but it's not looking pretty. still the market will continue, people were trading long before modern industrial capitalism came along, it will continue long after. as long as people are interacting it's almost guaranteed.

i don't know. i can't prove anything about the future. get a few nutjobs and nuclear weapons running around and suddenly we have a whole different set of values (clean air, filtered water, perhaps living underground in some form or another, dunno).
good time, the planet has been going on for millions of years. it's not going to disappear. if we have an entire collapse it's pretty likely there will still be some people left to keep on going. hopefully they'll be smarter.

i'm not saying that at all. if you've read what i've written here you know i have a lot of concern for the environment, for how people will figure out how to feed themselves, etc. i don't have any claims for how the transformation comes about. i do know that markets will be a part of that. i don't see them disappearing as long as people are around.

it's been done to some extent as an example already (the shift to information technologies and entertainment) as values and desires shifted to these intangibles. i'm not sure to what extent that kind of intangible creation of value is possible, how far it can be pushed from actual reality and what it will be like as forces to drive the market or how that will all play out in the longer term. i suspect reality will be the stronger force in the end and that more people will have to grow their own food and find ways to conserve energy and other resources. an accurate accounting of pollution (in all forms) will be critical in getting the market to reflect what reality is showing us. as we have more observations and scientists (and regular people involved too) involved we get a better chance of making progress.
what the absolute closed system population of the earth can sustain, i don't know. i also don't know what size economy is needed to make sure that everyone gets most of their actual needs met (ignoring the argument about desires vs. actual needs).
there will also be very hard fights to be had over expending resources for space flight, colonies on other planets, doing research on pretty much all sorts of hard to immediately justify science. these will be fights for the future of humanity. then there will also be fights over wild spaces, species diversity and conservation vs. human needs, etc. i don't know how these will work out. i hope they work out that we have a planet still full of wild areas and a more limited population that knows how to live in a responsible manner. one that also has enough resources to get into space and pressing on with getting to other planets and solar systems (perhaps we'll never actually have to live on a planet again if we learn what it takes to live in a closed system smaller than a planet). it's too early to know. i'll be long dead before the answers to these questions are in, but i'll put my values behind the choices i can influence now (treating the land well, conservation, etc.) that can reduce the pressure on the rest of the planet. as best i can. with what i learn. like anyone else who's paying attention.
i do have both hope and faith that humans will be around, where there are people there will be trading of one kind or another. not all trades are profitable to all. not all economies will do well. some people will be unhappy and others will be just fine. the assumption that an economy must grow is false. in a closed system an accurate market will eventually be fairly fixed. what is lost as friction is made up for by advances in knowledge or efficiency. at least until the sun runs out we have at least a large source of energy to draw upon and a lot of recyclable materials to work with.
i've written elsewhere that i support taxes inversely and exponentionally related to how much a produced item is renewable/recycled/recyclable. that adjustment to any of the large economies already (even if phased in over a period of years) would do a lot to offset damage done. that money could be spent on reclaiming and restoring areas for environmental needs. we have a lot of space that is currently being wasted that can be reclaimed and put back into soaking up CO2 again and providing more habitat for wild species.
if it comes to a great collapse then the wild areas return and the topsoil regenerates at some rate. any bare spots that can support life will get used in one form or another. life is pretty tenacious.
i don't consider what i have as faith, i have both science and history that show what happens after collapses. it's not pleasant, sure, but some survive and carry on. short of complete nuclear blasting of every weapon and short of large comet strikes and super-volcanoes and the sun burning out, i'm pretty sure some form of humanity continues. it may be the case though that we find other forms (if genetic tinkering gets to be widespread we may take on all sorts of strange forms -- i dunno the future exactly) and that gives us more chances to continue too.
c'est la vie,
songbird
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I was taking the day off, and thought I'd embroider on your conversation with David. Below is my abbreviated response.

More accurately, from Main Street to Wall Street. The impoverishment of the elderly, and the young, moves ahead in tandem. What geezers lose in Social Security isn't going to education. It's going for more weapon systems to use against the enemies of business, foreign and domestic, and oil depletion allowances, rebates to G.E., and weaponized, agricultural subsidies.

By George, I think you got it.

The right lever seems always be handy. Since its birth 200-300 years ago as the dominant economic system, Capitalism has always been an unstable system; unstable in the precise sense that it suffers from a business cycle. A constantly recurring cycle of sudden breakdown distinguished by rising unemployment, mass bankruptcies of enterprises, idling of productive capacity [such as] tools, equipment, and raw materials, followed by an upswing. These cycles have never been controlled or overcome. They vary in length and severity. Some are short and shallow, while others such as the one we're in now are deep and long lasting.

And prey tell, who controls government? Lobbyists? Who controls lobbyists?

<http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/24/opinion/krugman-japan-the-model.html?r ef=paulkrugman&_r=0>
By weak you must mean all those that lack well heeled lobbyists.

Never the less companies must consistently grow, and have profits for their investors. This means reducing costs, and "increasing" market share.

When the markets are manipulated?

Manipulating the rules isn't a system.

It must be wonderful to be that naive.
Until we have price fixing between corporations, and lobbyists that promote loopholes for large corporations at the expense of small business. Lower taxes, means cheaper borrowing, which is an advantage to the large corporations over smaller ones.

Are you suggesting that victims of hurricane Sandy, or the tornadoes in Moore, Oklahoma, or the explosion in West, Texas, or midwest droughts, or developmental disabilities, or disabling accidents, or lose work due to cancer don't deserve support from the rest of us? Really?!!
In listening to the program, I didn't hear that there was any fraud involved.
(I've noticed in the past that you seem to think that there are many common citizens who are free-loading.) <http://thinkbynumbers.org/government-spending/corporate-welfare/corporat e-welfare-statistics-vs-social-welfare-statistics/>
[It isn't an equal market for all when one party can exert influence the transaction surreptitiously]

And then there were all those commercials from banks about tapping the equity of your home for renovations, a new car, vacations.
<http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/05/us-suicide-economy-idUSL5E8M46 3M20121105> Americans' suicide rates up since economic crisis began ====yes, it hurt some people and was painful, but that doesn't show that the system didn't function.
No it seems to have functioned just fine.
We are now in the 6th year of this global recession/crisis. Unemployment is at an all-time high in many European countries, while here in North America youth unemployment continues to steadily rise. All the while corporate profits have exponentially increased with little if any trickle-down to the masses. Uh-huh.

It sure would be illuminating if you could give a source for that pronouncement. What we have seen for an awfully long time is government running at a loss because of it's giveaways to large corporations. Whether it is the contract basis for weapons from our military-industrial-complex, or putting in new locks on the Mississippi, that will allow larger barges to supply Cargill, and ADM with their government subsidized grains a few cents/pound cheaper.
As for business failure, I an loth to offer a citation as this is not an academic paper, but merely a couple of cloth heads yacking at each other, BUT <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_business_failures#1990 Scroll down from 1990 to 2010. You will see that in 2008, and 2009 a number of businesses didn't continue along quite fine. Those capitalist enterprises that did continue along quite fine got government welfare.

You mean like the stock exchanges?

I guess we need a definition of function.

Sorry, what are you talking about? Science is always open to amendment, based on the accepted "facts" to the most inclusive answer. The more questions your model can answer the better the model.

And many more who believe, may die as well, as fossil fuel extractors spend huge amounts of money to obfuscate the impact of "green house gases", as did the manufacturers of PCBs whose products destroyed the Earth's protective layer of ozone, operators of "acid rain" generating smokestacks, and the purveyors of cancer sticks. They, all, just wanted to squeeze out a few more billion dollars.

Out of time! The high water demands of agriculture in both India (where it accounts for 90 per cent of water usage) and China (where it accounts for 65 per cent of water) will lead to a drop in wheat and rice yields of between 30-50 per cent by 2050, according to the report. It said both countries would be forced to import 200-300 million tonnes of crops. Thailand, and Vietnam rely on river delta for growing rice. You know what's going to happen to those river deltas, don't you? We don't have no stinkin' 100 years to wait. A sane person would be running around like their hair was on fire trying to get someone, anyone in power to do something, because many are not going to go into that dark night softly.

Time out! Any system of economics isn't Capitalism.

Bartering isn't Capitalism. Food rots, animals die, art goes out of style. The experience of wars tells us that people will exchange a Picasso for a hamburger, because the participants aren't on a level playing field. This is called "Predatory Capitalism". Is gambling Capitalism? The commodities futures exchange will allow you to bet of the value of wheat or corn, or any other commodity. This is where we got into trouble with derivatives based on mortgages. This is also called "Casino Capitalism". Again, Capitalism is using capital to create more capital.

Thing is, Capitalism is only about 300 years old. What you are talking about is barter.

Because of labor laws in the industrialized countries. Try to talk an American, or an Australian into working for $3/day in a Bangladesh sweat shop.

in the meantime we have the system that

That's because it is marketed to us in slick advertising as being desirable. Processed foods made from refined ingredients aren't "time savers", if you include your hospital visits. Or the latest electronic toy made from rare earths, that cause wars from Afghanistan to the Congo. Feed your ego, the environment will take care of itself.
Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) argued that his belief that global warming is a hoax is biblically inspired. "Genesis 8:22 says "as long as the earth remains there will be springtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, day and night." My point (Inhofe's) is, God's still up there. The arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous."
And this is what passes for a leader in the U.S. today.

You say that like you don't have any descendants, no kids, or grandkids.
We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children. ~ Native American Proverb

Because it is advantageous to their benefactors.

Entropy? Friction maybe.

Aw, the BIG "if". Have Pakistan, or North Korea lob a couple of nukes into that mix, and it will be tough, even on the cockroaches.
One hundred thousand years from now all the plastic beer can holders will have broken down, and life will get a chance to start anew, without us.

Again, bartering isn't Capitalism.

Your solutions seem to need a couple hundred years to realize themselves, but the problems will be very noticeable by 2020 as we run out of clean water. Did you happen to hear that news clip about "Fracking". Five years ago, "Fracking" was exempted by law from water pollution.

Amen, Brother, Amen!
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God? ~ Epicurus

You don't seem concerned.

It's like your talking about the "Free Market". You don't have to know anything about the "Free Market", because it corrects itself. History shows that the so called "Free Market" is a rigged market.

How many people and observations do you need? Ninty-eight percent (98%) of climate scientists say we are in for a fall, yet we are told,"some say yes, and others say no". It's not like that. Ninty-eight percent (98%) say watch out! Yet, Inhofe, says "God is with US", and the fossil fuel extractor's shills tell us it's a hoax. It doesn't seem that observations and scientists influence us much at all.

The homeless, hungry, and the sick and the dead, who are of no concern to others.

It seems as if it is a closed, finite system with no room to grow, except to devour our own. As the rich get richer, the poor get poorer. Have an answer for that?

Pollyanna strikes again! A recitation of your beliefs doesn't encourage my hope. Maybe I'm just old school in that I like to prepare for the worst, and hope for the best.

Yet the business paradigm is privatize the profits, and socialize the cost, like with air pollution.

And it will happen just as soon as you can make it a source of corporate wealth.

At least on the single cell level, it is.

Other species have come and gone. Things like us, in one form or another have been around for about 2.5 million years. Homo sapiens have only been around 300,000 years. Don't let hubris cloud your Weltanschauung. The dinosaurs had it down pretty good, but then things went to hell very quickly. Yes birds survived that one. I wonder which mammal will survive the next?

That's all Folks.
It's the Best of All Possible Worlds.
--
Remember Rachel Corrie
<http://www.rachelcorrie.org/
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songbird wrote: Do you acknowledge that capitalism produces unacceptible

Show me where there has been zero growth or contraction under capitalism for any length of time. Now tell me what the unemployment was like then. That is the boogy man the financial controllers and leaders are all scared of.

Sounds to me that you are not a true blue free market capitalist at all. You want it reined in. If it is a naturally correcting system then why is this necessary?
Because the ways that capitalism does its corrections if left unattended are not acceptable to you. You also point out that the controls that are used are not always effective. Wouldn't it be simpler just to admit that the system is broken?
values will

You are confused between the level of employment in a business sector and the resources it demands. Despite the swing from large employment in agriculture, then industry and now information and services all those workers who don't actually produce material goods still want them. The mechanisation of agriculture and industry have if anything added to the material resource requirements of the economy.

What you define as 'continue to function' would result in such social costs that no politician who wants to stay in office would say the situation was satisfactory. I would be the same as I wouldn't want to be lynched by an unemployed mob either.

But it will function so badly that you have bent the meaning of 'function' so far out of shape to be useless. I begin to think that in many ways you actually agree with me but you are too emotionally wedded to the American Dream (the one based on a high expansion, high consumption capitalist system) that you can't give up on staying with capitalism and claiming that it will 'work' no matter what.
David
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David Hare-Scott wrote:

i'm not able to do that research at the moment, i'll put it on my list for this winter (along with Capitalism/Marxism and other related topics). i have a general recollection of periods of time in the late 1880s where the uSoA had a poor economy and some recessions and deflation, but i wouldn't be surprised if you couldn't find reasons to object to those examples (not suitably industrial enough, or poor labor statistics or no statistics at all).
i think periods of the Great Depression were deflationary and the unemployment numbers didn't change that much (the damage had already been done), towards the end, i just have no stats on hand here and i'm not interested in that kind of research ATM. i'm more interested in sustainable agriculture/gardening topics and the related sciences...

no as i find slavery deplorable, a true blue free market capitalist says all is market and all vices/sins are possible/exploitable and taxable. sometimes i find that leaning appealing as then the government can be turned into a more taxed approach to where all is permitted but it is taxed more highly as the evidence of damage accumulates. so the actual cost to those not involved in the practice is isolated or even the wider population has a better or improved life because the few who insist on the more damaging approaches to life pay a disproportionate tax. so they are used to advance society as they destroy themselves. unfortunately, taxes rarely go for programs they are intended to (c.f. the lotto or tobacco settlement monies).

i want it changed to reflect the costs of pollution and the depletion or destruction of resources. that is just encouraging the system to reflect the true costs so that it can work better at eliminating them.
it does not "correct itself" by direct fiddling, it changes by getting a large enough group of individuals (who make up the market) to change their actions. the government plays catchup most of the time. rarely are they out front in terms of policies. climate change being a large example in point.
given a free market i can invest in companies which do what i want (for the most part) and if i can convince enough others to shift their decisions in a similar manner then i can drive up the financing costs for companies which don't do things as i'd like. the more accurately i can make a polluting company reflect the damage the more likely it will change ways. make the cost high enough and it can't continue and we get a market response to a societal value completely apart from any governmental lack of decisions on pollution (this is pretty much what is happening now, but it is a slow process).
the companies already ahead of the shift are those that reap the rewards as the value of what they are doing is recognised.

it's not capitalism which does the corrections it is the sum result of the decisions of the market participants. so the market reflects the values of the people in various (and conflicting ways). if i were a dictator i could eliminate a lot of noise and wasted energy, but like you say i'd be lynched so what's the point of such a game other than kicking around ideas trying to find a better way.
my own ideas of a better way leaves capital markets in place, but forces all costs of pollution or lack of recycling and destruction or depletion of resources to be built into the taxes and prices of products (also allows for wild spaces and taxes to refurbish damaged areas, demolition of unused buildings and replanting with trees or other suitable species). if you manufacture an item, it comes with a built in recycling fee and a pollution fee (which gets adjusted as more information becomes known, as pollution improves, etc). also all products sold are returnable to the manufacturer (as long as they are in business (for no additional fee), once they go under then the recycling is covered by a more general tax). this way electric cars could be put into use more quickly and the recharging done with wind/solar energy as much as possible. getting off the fossil fuel burning route is critical right now. adding a carbon tax above the damage rate (so that CO2 remediation and removal projects can be funded and gotten going).
so yes, not at all a free market person as i would also rewrite chunks of the US constitution and make other changes to many laws i find wasteful along with many subsidies which damage the environment or topsoil (and increased enforcement of violations and remediations).

i don't claim it functions perfectly. so yes, that means it is broken in various ways. some ways i find pretty horrible (that a few people could cause wars that cost trillions of dollars and kill thousands). i'd put the bill for those at the feet of those who carried it out not the wider population or future generations.
i'd also redo much of government as wasted or damaging (river management is clearly destroying environment and groundwater along with topsoil depletion, we should be encouraging farmers to not put in yet more drainage (as that turns the ground water into the streams/rivers even faster leading to ground water pollution being even more concentrated or worse in terms of pollution from runoff). there are a huge number of changes that could be done right now that pay off over the long term. most of them shift labor from meaningless paper shuffling to actually doing something which helps restore species habitat and preserves topsoil. even simple stuff like cleaning up vacant lots, tearing down abandoned houses and getting the areas replanted with a variety of suitable species turns the land into a better climate for good things and reduces the negative impression and crimes around abandoned buildings. get that done sooner and we have an actual carbon sink being created as the trees get larger. it doesn't take long for a tree to be a net carbon sink. later harvest those trees and turn them into furniture or buildings for the poor and then the carbon gets locked up even longer (as compared to if it were used as fuel for heating or cooking or...).

and if the market reflected the true costs of having them i couldn't even object. it just means the future society has a much better chance of living a similar good life if we switch from destructive non-recycled production methods to more sustainable ones.

well sure as fossil fuels are behind a large portion of it. if the costs of all of that CO2 (and the damage it is causing already with much of the future damages also built in) were included in the taxes for such products then those material costs would reflect reality (unlike as you say it has decoupled currently). the thing is that reality will get it's due.

yet for some strange reason politicians continue to be elected and unlynched even now in most modern capitalistish societies. my changes would be to eliminate popular elections/campaigns along with pretty close monitoring of money going to representatives (regular audits of them and their contacts to detect any funny changes in income or savings or offshore accounts). but that's even further afield...

no, it's just history that shows me that. if something has happened dozens of times in various circumstances i'd be very silly to not pay attention to the information those events have provided.
my widest claim is that the system continues to function and reflects the values of the society, if the society changes enough and enough actors make different financial decisions then the market itself reflects those changes. the market can drive some effects and gets feedback loops, but those can be worked out in time. i don't see any other system other than benevolent dictator which allows such changes to happen without revolutions. yet we've had close to four revolutions in a few hundred years and the system continues on in some form or another. sometimes with more regulation other times with less, but i think generally it works well enough. not purely how i'd like, but it's got more going for it than the government does in terms of being able to change rapidly once new information becomes widely known.

i don't think you know me that well, but i don't have the time to spell it all out yet again how i live my life.
in terms of reform of the system i'd go for large changes in government (including rewriting portions of the constitution and several other laws). the market would shake and shimmy as people freaked out, but that is a short-term adjustment needed to prevent an even longer term catastrophe.

i don't see a viable alternative that can respond as quickly to new information. we'd need a revolution of huge proportion to change to something else. more likely we'll continue to jigger this one with policy patches and social tinkerings and the whole system will gradually change to reflect the values of the majority that comes along next. i sure hope that majority is more environmentally aware... at present i don't think it is as much as it needs to be that is why i aim my efforts at talking to people around things like gardening because at least they do understand that they can get food from a gardener.
songbird
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Are you talking "white", or "black" slavery here? Somehow, I get the feeling that economics should take a backseat to morality.

War, fossil fuel subsidies, and other earmarks

Some in Congress would call that new taxes, and you'd be stopped in your tracks.

Investors can invest, or not invest. Those are the only real options that they have.

If you've noticed the Stock Market recently, you'll see that the large firms are doing quite well. The only businesses that need investing are the small businesses which have very little effect on the economy except in aggregate.

AYN RAND: I am opposed to all forms of control. I am for an absolute laissez-faire, free, unregulated economy. Let me put it briefly. I am for the separation of state and economics. Greenspan is Rand's acolyte, who prevented the derivatives market from being regulated (transparency), and led the way to it's crash.
(See Frontline's: The Warning (About Brooksley Born)

As it turns out, the problem is the lack of transparency, without the sucker getting an even break. Then when it blows up, and the perpetrators lose money, the suckers make good the money that the perpetrators lost, so that they can be victimized all over again.
Additionally, this concept of the self-regulating "Free Market" is for the simple minded. We had a "Free Market", and J.D. Rockefeller made it his own. An economy with out regulators is like a football game without referees. I would think everyone would understand that since 2008.

(rolling of eyes)

We all paid for it with our taxes.

The problem is that our overlords don't seem to recognize the real, physical world. They only understand their virtual, economic world.

You mean that there is nothing we can do about being sheared like sheep.

It does reflect the true cost. They get the profits, and we get the costs.

The DOD has made plans for "Climate Change. Why wouldn't corporations already have plans to make profits from this next disaster? The only ones who don't have a plan, are those who rely on politicians to protect them.

By a 54 to 40 percent margin, all respondents say the U.S. is at the start of a longer term decline, where the U.S. is no longer the leading country in the world, rather than going through the kind of tough time the country faces from time to time.
Poll: Congress Has 14 Percent Approval Rating More Americans continue to disapprove than approve of sequestration, now by 56-35 percent
More Americans continue to disapprove than approve of sequestration, now by 56-35 percent
Let's face it, we've lost control of our government.

Public campaign financing would be so much simpler, since we are talking "Pie in the Sky".

Every once in a while, however, politicians do something so wrong, substantively and morally, that cynicism just wont cut it; its time to get really angry instead.
First, as millions of workers lost their jobs through no fault of their own, many families turned to food stamps to help them get by and while food aid is no substitute for a good job, it did significantly mitigate their misery. Food stamps were especially helpful to children who would otherwise be living in extreme poverty, defined as an income less than half the official poverty line.
Wait, were not done yet. Food stamps greatly reduce food insecurity among low-income children, which, in turn, greatly enhances their chances of doing well in school and growing up to be successful, productive adults. So food stamps are in a very real sense an investment in the nations future an investment that in the long run almost surely reduces the budget deficit, because tomorrows adults will also be tomorrows taxpayers.
So what do Republicans want to do with this paragon of programs? First, shrink it; then, effectively kill it.
And why must food stamps be cut? We cant afford it, say politicians like Representative Stephen Fincher, a Republican of Tennessee, who backed his position with biblical quotations and who also, it turns out, has personally received millions in farm subsidies over the years. Look, I understand the supposed rationale:
Were becoming a nation of takers, and doing stuff like feeding poor children and giving them adequate health care are just creating a culture of dependency and that culture of dependency, not runaway bankers, somehow caused our economic crisis.
But I wonder whether even Republicans really believe that story or at least are confident enough in their diagnosis to justify policies that more or less literally take food from the mouths of hungry children. The absurdity of the cuts angers the people they affect. The US can undoubtedly see how Southern Europe is driving itself into the ground with its belt-tightening measures and how unemployment there is skyrocketing. But, here, the country is pulling its own plug.
"Austerity, including sequestration, is the economic version of medieval leeching," wrote Jared Bernstein, former chief economic adviser to Vice President Joseph Biden, in the New York Times in early May. People in the Middle Ages believed a sick person needed to lose supposedly bad blood in order to regain health.
"If we were the pilots who fly members of Congress home, maybe we wouldn't have had our funding cut either," says Keys, the Head Start center director.

Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth. -Lucy Parsons http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucy_Parsons
Even if they got it by gaming the system.
At one time we revolted against a King , and royalty. Only the names have been changed. Government, in the name of the ruling corporations, wants absolute control again.

We have a corporate controlled government, and a corporate controlled media. Sure we have limited free speech for the present, but the government with its mushroom clouds, and smoking guns spooks enough of the population to justify most any crazy notion. In any event it gives the un-beloved Congress the plausible excuse to do things that are against our own good, like the National Defense Authorization Act.

Yes the environment is overwhelmed, and as far as we are concerned with its ability to support human life, the nurturing environment is dying. Yet, here we all sit in the water, wondering how much warmer it will get.

At least until they see you as something that may go well with wild onions, and french fries.
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Same here.

<
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yScINihX_z8

Hungry is a hard companion.

Certainly not in a contemporary context. Just look at his quotes. These days politicians just keep their heads down, and continue taking the money. Not a squeek about the Military-Industrial-Complex.

He wasn't good at playing games.
"War is a Racket", by Smedley D. Butler.
"I helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil intersts in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested."

I find it despicable and worth fighting against. There are no more countries to colonize, so we are colonizing America. The outrageous treatment of people of color in America, will boon be visited on our paler citizen. The chickens will come home to roost.

As I noted in a different post, it is intrinsic to capitalism. The difference is now we are running up against the finite limit of resources in the physical world (cyberspace is something different). As with agriculture, we ran out of arable land, and now we are reaching the yield limits of our new cultivars. The only resource that we have plenty of is people. That said, keep one eye open when you take that nap.

The thing is that it's not the institutions. The most efficient, and beneficial government would be a benevolent dictator. The results of the institutions of government depend on the love in the hearts of those who direct them. If citizens are simply a crop to be harvested for their tax dollars, like wheat, the results will be different than if there was real concern for the welfare of the people.

The world is full of Asymptotes. Don't let them wear you down.

Yeah, but they bloat locally, not in Charlotte, New York, or San Francisco.

We had early warmth, and dry weather (fire season started a month ago), and even with the days still short here on the north side of the hill, the plants were jumping. Now weather has returned to seasonal (70F), and the tomatoes, and the peppers have stalled. The end of the month is supposed to return warm weather, and I'll be gardening again.

Onions and beets here today, and some landscaping for my Lovey.

Amen, brother, amen.

I'd settle for an afternoon lunchmeat and cheese plater, a fresh baguette, and a $10 bottle of French wine from TJ's.
It's good for my spirit, but anathema to my body. Classic double bind.

And sometimes it comes from being in on the joke ;O)
In any event,
Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. - Plato

Dibble on!
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Billy wrote:

... Sepp Holzer...

??? i'm banned for the evening offline so i can't look this up.

of course not, it is unpatriotic.

lovely...

at the moment around here most are more interested in killing each other. when i was a kid i learned hard lessons about racism. it may matter what people say, but i also pay attention to how they act. in my own family it breaks my heart often enough. i see a lot of "Christians" but not enough Christians, so it goes.

yeah, well i'll just say i disagree, but it doesn't matter if i disagree or not, because it's highly unlikely capitalism disappears.

i'm a light sleeper.

some people in government do actually care. i don't see the current system set up to select caring people though.
...

what are Asymps and why does they need a tote? anyways, my basket is full, time to hit the space bar and answer the next post.

so you're biased against the big cities? :)
...

some things are comfort foods even if they are bad for us. as a child of the tv-dinner generation about anything smoked, nitrated, salted or sugared used to be danger food to me. i've gotten away from most of it except a few weaknesses, but they are no longer regular or staple foods. luxuries a few times a year. funny how times change. in the old days hotdogs sausages were what was made from scraps (all but the squeal) and leftovers and sold for little. now a lot of these sell for as much as a steak...

heheh, much humor around here is rather raw/earthy -- about anything is fair game.

and God needs a vacation...
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Owned, and operated a small 3,000 case winery for 10 years. Our broker was screwing us, and our landlord was about to do the same, so we went to Europe for a year instead.

And then there is Nestle. <http://gogreengogrey.blogspot.ca/2013/04/head-of-nestle-group-peter - brabeck-says.html>
Also see <
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTKn17uZRAE
Bolivia Water Wars The above is a segment of "The Corporation" that was noted elsewhere.
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Wildbilly wrote:

landlord for a winery, oh my...

but what do you think of a large company that does make green efforts (or any company for that matter)? already they are making headway even more than the government is in some areas.

i saw something about that. what a shame.

on the list for this winter.
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Twenty acre minimum to have a winery on agricultural land. One acre of vineyard = $100,000. As it was, I spent the first 3 mo. in Europe grinding my teeth, and then I relaxed.

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Billy wrote:

$2M, ouch, around here 20 acres might run about the price of the one out there, but it's not prime grape turf here (not enough hills, foggy and hot and humid, etc.) anyways. east and west of us there are vinyards coming along. i'm not sure what they run per acre.
ok, so you have actually been a corporate overlord. that means your comments are geared towards the big corporations and not the smaller ones?

i'm still asking this. ;)
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Sorry, I miss conscrewed what you said. Get the DVD.
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Billy wrote:

can you write a summary for the link so i know what you're talking about or referencing? :)
most of the longer messages and replies are written when i'm offline so i'm not usually going to follow a link or look at video.
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???????? Oh, OK.
"The Corporation" is on YouTube in 23 installments. <
http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLFA50FBC214A6CE87

It is the same as the DVD.
I think you'd be better off with the DVD, all things considered.
The Corporation 2003 NR 145 minutes
Filmmakers Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott explore the genesis of the American corporation, its global economic supremacy and its psychopathic leanings, with social critics like Noam Chomsky and Milton Friedman lending insight in this documentary.
Cast: Mikela J. Mikael, Noam Chomsky, Milton Friedman, Michael Moore
Director: Mark Achbar, Jennifer Abbott
Genres: Documentary, Social & Cultural Documentaries, Political Documentaries
This movie is: Cerebral, Controversial
Format: DVD
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Corporation_%28film%29> The Corporation is a 2003 Canadian documentary film written by University of British Columbia law professor Joel Bakan, and directed by Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott. The documentary examines the modern-day corporation, considering its legal status as a class of person and evaluating its behaviour towards society and the world at large as a psychiatrist might evaluate an ordinary person. This is explored through specific examples. Bakan wrote the book, The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power, during the filming of the documentary.
Film critics gave the film generally favorable reviews. The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 91% of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 104 reviews.[3] Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 73 out of 100, based on 28 reviews.
<http://dvd.netflix.com/Movie/The-Corporation/60034810?strkid 5545367_0 _0&strackidc95b8cdbaf6f550_0_srl&trkid"2336>
MEMBER REVIEW This is a wonderfully edited documentary about the effects that corporations have on society. It's highly informative without being boring. The first point that should be made is that everyone should see this film because the topics in it effect all of us. It doesn't matter what your political, economic, or religious status is- if you live on this planet, you will be directly effected by corporations for your entire life. Far from being the benevolent providers of goods and services that make our lives worth living, corporations are by definition voracious predators who must continually feed their appetite for more. This movie is not necessarily anti-corporate. It's pretty objective and presents the truth straight from the CEO's mouth. The single most important thing that you walk away from this film with is the understanding of why things are the way they are in America and other capitalist societies. Most people don't think about these topics very often, but when you start to put the puzzle pieces together, you realize that our way of life can't possibly be sustained. This raises important questions about what we are going to do about it. Further, the movie gives you a pretty good understanding of the laws governing corporations. These laws basically force companies to continually grow, whether or not it is sustainable. To most people, the idea that a company has to continually grow larger seems to make sense. But what if that company harvests resources that belong to all people and are in extremely short supply? You know, things like air, water, trees...the stuff that the creator gave to all mankind. You will be watching nature get pillaged to benefit the few until society awakens from it's haze of denial. This film is the start of that awakening.
Voila, the concise summary.

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The first one has Noam Chomsky, so you can hardly fail to learn something new.
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Billy wrote: ...

yep, should be fun.
arg! weather forecast has more rain coming. looks like flood weather for some folks down stream and in town. the water is already up to the levees in several areas.
the wetlands have a few more feet of capacity, but that won't do much good with the ground already being saturated.
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Until about a decade ago, we had one town that flooded nearly every year. Only place I ever knew where flooding was normal. People started putting their houses on 20' stilts. Then the Corp. of Engineers put in flood control, and the river has been very sedate ever since. Not that I wish flood victims harm, but we used to enjoy the floods. It would close the main road, and the silence was golden. Additionally it was an enforced vacation, where for a couple of days you just had to sit, and watch the day slowly go bye. If we got very lucky the power would go off for a day or so. Not enough to ruin what's in the freezer, just enough to give a feeling of sanity to the neighborhood.
That said, a few years back it rained until June. Mud everywhere. No fun, and the garden was late.
Is this normal weather for you?
We just had a 3 day wind storm, which is unusual for Northern California.
Hope everybody that wants to stay dry gets their wish.
Good luck.
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Billy wrote:

we camped quite a bit when i was young so bouts of roughing it don't bother me either. right now i'd welcome a few days of quiet time.

i'd not enjoy mud season in hilly country.

not compared to the past few years, but going back further this would have been a more normal.
the good point of having more rain is that the lakes need the boost. not much snow the past few years and those hot and dry summers...

holding out so far, more rains this morning and tonight. there was a break that has let some sink in. for us locally we're fine. it is still the town down slope from us that will be more of a risk because it has two rivers flowing through it that have to push against all the other water coming from both the north and the south via other rivers and there's only one outlet to Lake Huron for all those sources. add to that how flat the area is and that makes for some interesting times.
the last time it flooded the town was in the mid-90s. i think that is when they put in the levees (i wasn't around then). i'm not sure we're going to top the levees this time with a break in the rains coming over the weekend. we'll see...
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Depending on local laws (they are verboten as possible invasives if they escaped in some places) you might look at tilapia. They do well in small-ish container aquaculture systems, breed like rabbits (the invasive if escaped argument is not void - don't let them escape) are omnivorous and grow fast. Or check with your ag extension people to see what they suggest and/or what's legal in your state. Hybrid aquaculture/hydoponic arrangements seem to work as well.
Be sure to eat one before you commit to raising any, but fairly decent flavor (to most people who eat fish) is part of their appeal.
Trout are fine if you have the conditions, but few people do, and providing them with happy circumstances artificially is expensive.
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Ecnerwal wrote: ...

i'll pass, thanks, i'm not that much into aquaculture and even if i were this isn't a site well suited for it.
i'm much happier not having to deal with most of the farm animals. worms are good enough for me. i like that they don't need a huge amount of care. it fits well with my keep it simple approach to gardening.
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