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  • in reply to: Debt Rattle Mar 26 2014: This Is Why We Are Doomed #11991

    This story is from the Guardian from April 2013, but it still has merit.

    The world could be heading for a major economic crisis as stock markets inflate an investment bubble in fossil fuels to the tune of trillions of dollars, according to leading economists.

    “The financial crisis has shown what happens when risks accumulate unnoticed,” said Lord (Nicholas) Stern, a professor at the London School of Economics. He said the risk was “very big indeed” and that almost all investors and regulators were failing to address it.

    The so-called “carbon bubble” is the result of an over-valuation of oil, coal and gas reserves held by fossil fuel companies. According to a report published on Friday, at least two-thirds of these reserves will have to remain underground if the world is to meet existing internationally agreed targets to avoid the threshold for “dangerous” climate change. If the agreements hold, these reserves will be in effect unburnable and so worthless – leading to massive market losses. But the stock markets are betting on countries’ inaction on climate change.

    OtherWords / By Brett Fleishman

    Why Hasn’t Wall Street Imploded Over “The Carbon Bubble” Yet?

    Shell reveals that fossil-fuel companies have more product than they can sell and their value is based on total reserves. That means fossil-fuel assets are significantly overvalued.

    in reply to: Debt Rattle Mar 26 2014: This Is Why We Are Doomed #11990

    We may be “saved” by an economic collapse.

    This is long, but worth noticing.The following is an email from – their divestment group. Thought provoking.

    March 27, 2014

    Royal Dutch Shell buried a bombshell in its recently released 2013 annual report.

    Amid 200 pages of predictably and mind-numbingly dry text, the world’s seventh-largest oil company foreshadowed something big. Here are the exact words, which Shell buried in the report’s “ risk factors” section:

    “If we are unable to find economically viable, as well as publicly acceptable, solutions that reduce our CO2 emissions for new and existing projects or products, we may experience additional costs, delayed projects, reduced production and reduced demand for hydrocarbons.”

    Believe it or not, Shell — of all companies — gets it.

    Shell gets that unless things change quickly, another big financial market bubble has the potential to bring people to their knees.

    It’s called the “Carbon Bubble,” and it’s a very simple equation.

    Fossil-fuel companies already hold more coal, oil, and gas reserves than people and industry can possibly use before climate change reaches the point where life as we know it can’t continue.

    Simply put, these companies have more product than they can sell. And their value is based on their total reserves. That means fossil-fuel assets are significantly overvalued.

    Why hasn’t Wall Street imploded over this yet? Well, remember how “nobody” could see the housing bubble coming?

    The truth is, Wall Street is still profiting from fossil fuels. And when economists and analysts tried to warn people about the housing bubble, just like some of them are now attempting to do about the carbon bubble, their foresight fell on deaf ears.

    And if memories of the last economic crisis or even the phrase “market bubble” give you goose bumps, ask yourself how exposed you are to investments in oil, gas, and coal — the three kinds of fossil fuels. Does your pension plan, retirement plan, or family nest egg invest in the likes of Shell Oil?

    As a senior analyst for, an activist organization that fights climate change, my job is to help persuade college endowments, city pension funds, and foundations to divest from fossil fuels.

    In my conversations (really they’re debates) with boards of trustees and treasurers of multibillion-dollar pension funds and endowments, the biggest concern is always risk and return.

    People charged with these investment decisions want to maximize returns.

    Well, as our ability to burn carbon safely diminishes and the reserves of fossil-fuel companies increase, those investments will continue to become riskier and less profitable.

    The logic is so clear, even Shell doesn’t think they are a good investment. The oil giant is looking for “ viable solutions to reduce” its own CO2 emissions.

    Shell’s not the only oil giant reckoning with this reality. Bowing to shareholder pressure, ExxonMobil just announced plans to produce a first-of-its-kind report showing how the growing trend in climate change activism is destabilizing their financial security.

    “The deal is a big victory for the relatively new movement by some investors to get energy companies to consider how climate change policies will affect the bottom line,” according toPolitico Morning Energy.

    If you do one thing for your future, consider divesting from fossil fuels. It’s a great way to minimize your vulnerability to a serious financial crisis while investing in a more hospitable future for your children.

    in reply to: Debt Rattle Jan 30 2014: No More Humming Along #10935

    Thanks, Ilargi

    These rattles are great for me as I don’t currently have time to sort through various news sources. Looks like all TAE has said about deflation is happening. You allow me to keep watch. I’m hunkering down in Oakland/Berkeley CA, hoping for rain, planning raised beds and not planting as much as in the past. My chickens should start laying again soon.

    Most people are still living in denial about the economy not lasting well.

    Seems like alternate energy is going to be human muscle power. So I walk more and drive less, and try to get more fit.

    I’d like to help my daughter pay off more of her mortgage that she felt she need to have, renting hasn’t been part of her dream. But if/when the banks tank, what will happen? Is it worth it to continue to whittle away on a 30 year mortgage to get it down to 15 yrs, but where will we be in 15 years? Since I”m still working after “retirement” at businesses that are doing well financially, I wonder what to do with this money. I don’t really need it, but where to put it? I guess into her mortgage.

    Thanks TAE for being a sane brain I can tune into.

    in reply to: How To Stop Jeff Bezos From Filling Our Skies With Drones #9533

    Won’t disturb stork baby deliveries, cuz most babes are over 5 lbs.

    So still jobs for storks.

    in reply to: Nicole Foss : Where the Rubber Meets the Road in America #9504

    Hey Ted,

    I think he was joking when he called you that. I, for one, got a bit of a laugh with that quip. I think there are many people who would seriously mean to call those of us who are interested in the public good – commies. That you care about people is the bottom line and the real name callers are fine with common folks just falling off the back of the truck. Some people would rather save their personal profits and life styles than to help those in need. This blog is where I enjoy hearing from those who care about easing the transition for as many people as possible.

    in reply to: Nicole Foss : Where the Rubber Meets the Road in America #9502

    I think the Professor may be right about the only jobs for the little guy being in the military machine. That has been the standard solution to boost the economy for decades.

    Now if the military machine and budget could be at least partly be diverted to bolster our country’s infrastructure, I might grudgingly be in favor of that. And if part of the military resources were moved to provide actual universal health care, we might see
    an opportunity for our country to get through this time of disintegration as we stagger down the stairway to a sustainable culture.

    I know this sound like pie-in-the-sky, but what else can we do but imagine ways through this messy time.

    I’m hearing of localized socially responsible people going through the west Oakland neighborhood asking if the poor and homeless there have enough food or clothes. These are other residents of that area of Oakland and it is not funded by the city or county.

    We’re on our own now. Or at the mercy of FEMA or other federal agencies, for better or worse.

    in reply to: Why Does JPMorgan Still Have A Banking License? #8982

    I loved reading this post on Zero Hedge today.

    JP Morgan tried to do social media and it turned into the laugh-of-the-day for all kinds of people. They used Twitter with #AskJPM

    Amazing that they had no clue of how funny the truth sounds. The questions are great. Naturally they had to cancel it all.

    I got some really good belly laughs on some of the questions they were asked.

    in reply to: TAE 3.0: What do you want to see? #7838

    I like the idea for a goal amount of money. I’d be ready to help with that.

    Also like the idea about topics for living in a prepared way in Urban settings. We have some good examples of urban homesteads here in the Bay Area. I’ll see if some feelers out there might find some photo/film essays.

    in reply to: Playing Russian Roulette With Someone Else's Head #7837

    This is your best one yet (and there are so many fine analyses here). This gives a sense of the real people stumbling around the banking world.

    Truly Finance Capitalism has taken over our political systems in all parts of the world. It’s like watching a slow train crash.

    Alternate banking systems, like the state one in N. Dakota could be a cushion when it all crashes down. This makes local trade systems all the more necessary for communities. We need to know our neighbors better. Access to our more distant friends may not help in a practical way.

    The slow train crash – I wonder if it will take years as they juggle the hot potato or if it might drop in a week.

    in reply to: Professions & businesses in the years ahead. #7418

    Thanks for bringing this up.

    If I were young and ready to find a career or 2 or 3, I think I would go into survival First Aid, along with Urban Farming. The third career would be to join or organize a spiritual group with little dogma, like a pagan type of group with a focus on helping the community.

    The Lifeboat/Community section here has an thought provoking article on the subject of Community.

    One of Stoneleigh’s points has been about making community. I believe that one of the main strengths of humanity has been our ability to form sharing groups. Our current US atomization of nuclear families is really contrary to the village forming ability probably coded into our DNA; our current capitalist system needs to have a mobile ‘surplus army’ of workers to relocate and re-educate themselves as necessary.

    The article in the Lifeboat section looks at various ways people have survived with a cohesive group life style and thoughts. Preeminent are the Jews who survive by their self recognition and traditions of hospitality. He notes the Amish and also Quakers for more worldly cohesion along with their trad of hospitality.

    < Quakers have traditionally valued group self-sufficiency, but not valued individual self-sufficiency except in spiritual matters and then only to a moderate degree.>

    Another model he goes into is the Open Source movement in the IT world.

    in reply to: Quote Of The Year. And The Next. #6738

    Overpopulation as a cause of reource depletion is an illusion.

    I can’t find an electronic graph version of this world bank info, but I’ll try to put it down without the graph.

    Percent of world consumption

    0.5 1.0 1.4 1.9 2.4 3.3 4.8 8.1 17.6 59.0

    1(poor) 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

    So even if we killed off the bottom 50% of the population, we only save slightly over 7 % of resources. It’s the top 10% that are using almost 60% of all resources. And I’d guess that includes a very large part of the US middle class and up. Course, the middle class is sinking back down into its (wishing it was) working class roots. 🙁

    in reply to: One Inch Below The Surface (America, You're Being Punked) #6735

    Ilargi – “Like, where’s the media attention for the reports about the FBI, Homeland Security, the Joint Terrorism Task Force, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Domestic Security Alliance Council and the Federal Reserve all teaming up with Wall Street banks to bring down the Occupy movement?”

    You make further important points.
    Free speech = being a terrorist.
    “the state apparatus serves those who hold the power and the money”
    CIA nominee John Brennan = Dr. Drone

    Last fall some local cities wanted to buy armoured vehicles and even paraded them at the last few Occupy rallies. Berkeley voted down armoured vehicles.(Though I expect some city nearby has managed to keep one of the free samples they got from HLS. What are they to do with all the equipment and personel brought home from Iraq?)

    I can only hope (hopium?, anyone?) that the Alameda County (Oakland is one of the cities in the county)Board of Supervisors realizes that the Occupy movement is “watching” them back. We are alert to the possiblility that the Sheriff’s Dept wants to divert prisoner re-entry money from community service groups to use to fill the budget gap. Guess what they want to buy? Drones!!!

    I went to their meeting yesterday due to an email from one of the Occupy group lists I’m on. Now I’ll be watching them too. I think it can go both ways. I know I’m likely to be on their list of “subversives”, but I cannot quietly ignore the direction they are likely to head. It wouldn’t take too much for a full blown Occupation of the Alameda Co BOS, like we did to the Oakland City BOS. The People will show up again when they try to buy drones. They claim there will be a discussion open to community comments.

    Our time will come.

    But guns won’t be necessary. Just ask Ghandi.

    in reply to: Obama Has Once Last Chance To Become A Great President #6690

    I’ve been reading a bit about the Fall of the Roman Empire, but now I wonder if more useful lessons could be learned from studying the Fall of the Roman Republic. Perhaps the buying of votes is all it has taken to make the loss of a functioning republic certain.

    We might even have one “good” Augustus, before the raving maniacs that followed him. Course we could go straight to the maniacs.

    Homeland “Security” gives me the creeps, big time. What a recipe for frightened conformity. A maniac could do a holocaust so easily with that.

    Oh, and have as happy a new year as possible. I’m still enjoying my abundance of eggs from my chickens. Perhaps they can be my urban barter coin.

    in reply to: Impotence, Leverage and Central Banking #6623

    I may not agree with much of Zero Hedges politics, but they don’t pull any punches on the economic future.

    Their guest post from Brandon Smith at, while somewhat alarmist about direct impact of the melt-down, has good evidence with the Dry Baltic chart near the end of this piece.

    Hmm, maybe Santa can bring me some non-GMO seeds for Xmas.

    in reply to: Impotence, Leverage and Central Banking #6594

    Here is an interesting bit on the home front in the US. Good charts even if I don’t know how to give you real links.

    He is giving a guess that things will tank in early to mid 2013.

    Charles Hugh Smith
    The Two Charts You Should See Before Risking a Dime in the Market in 2013 (December 17, 2012)

    ‘As a lagniappe, there is a third pattern suggesting a major decline just ahead: Three Peaks and A Domed House Pattern Signals An End To The Bull Market.’

    in reply to: The Automatic Earth presents a brand new Nicole Foss 4 DVD set #6567

    Stoneleigh and Ilargi –

    I’ve ordered my copies of the DVD and can hardly wait for Santa to bring it to me.

    You guys keep me posted on the collapse of the global economy. Now it’s just the learning curve on raised bed gardening and trying to become somewhat food secure with it. My chickens are a treat with a fresh egg a day and others to gift and trade to friends and neighbors.

    I think I’d like to see a bit more on Urban gardening networks and other prepping skills. I’m especially interested in water and its upcoming shortages etc.

    Much as I’d like to live on a farm, I have a business (for now) in town and friends and family. We have some downstream (5 yr) plans to go together with a friend and his family to possibly find a good farm for us to go in together on. Since he is a USDA regional supervisor, he can keep his eyes open for a good opportunity. I just hope that 3 – 5 yrs can give us enough time to transition.

    Again thanks for all your hard work in keeping the rest of us up on the unfolding financial and energy events.

    in reply to: Optimism Bias, #6449

    Optimism about ones community is essential to my efforts. I’ve been collecting articles about the Localization of Food, Urban Farms, and Occupy-the-Farm (UC Berkeley has been using this land for GMO funded projects).

    One of my favorite articles right now is about the use of Chinese brake ferns to suck the contamination of arsenic out of the soil and into its fronds. The remediation of urban soil is a high priority as we work towards urban farms. The example of Havana Cuba after its loss of Soviet aid, had them plant the city and it now provides about 70% of its farm needs, so they say.

    My optimism is about the Transition to greater urban sustainability. Some say that cities will be terrible after the SHTF, but the Occupy coming together of people and networking has been impressive here in the Oakland/Berkeley area.

    in reply to: The IMF -Inadvertently- Condemns The Eurozone #5942

    I googled the question about Buffet and others of the 0.1% selling bank and consumer stocks, and found this:

    “Despite the 6.5% stock market rally over the last three months, a handful of billionaires are quietly dumping their American stocks . . . and fast.

    Warren Buffett, who has been a cheerleader for U.S. stocks for quite some time, is dumping shares at an alarming rate. He recently complained of “disappointing performance” in dyed-in-the-wool American companies like Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, and Kraft Foods.”

    No surprise that the Stock market is in a huge Bubble. So if the the biggest rats jump ship before the small ones, it’s no surprise to me or likely to any of the commentariate here.

    Near the end of the article is this:

    “Editor’s Note: For a limited time, Newsmax is showing the Wiedemer interview and supplying viewers with copies of the new, updated Aftershock book including the final, unpublished chapter. Go here to view it now.”

    This part of the article turns it into an infomercial. Guess his book wasn’t doing very well otherwise.

    in reply to: Hungary Throws Out Monsanto AND The IMF #5941

    So here’s an interesting French judgment against Monsanto.

    The horrifying part of the article mentions that this herbicide is still in use in the good ol’ US. 🙁

    “Monsanto Found Guilty of Chemical Poisoning in Landmark Case

    A French farmer who can no longer perform his routine farming duties because of permanent pesticide injuries has had his day in court, literally, and the perpetrator of his injuries found guilty of chemical poisoning. The French court in Lyon ruled that Monsanto’s Lasso weedkiller formula, which contains the active ingredient alachlor, caused Paul Francois to develop lifelong neurological damage that manifests as persistent memory loss, headaches, and stuttering during speech.

    Reports indicate that the 47-year-old farmer sued Monsanto back in 2004 after inhaling the Lasso product while cleaning his sprayer tank equipment. Not long after, Francois began experiencing lasting symptoms that prevented him from working, which he says were directly linked to exposure to the chemical. Since Lasso’s packaging did not bear adequate warnings about the dangers of exposure, Francois alleged at the time that Monsanto was essentially negligent in providing adequate protection for its customers.

    To the surprise of many, the French court agreed with the claims and evidence presented before it, declaring earlier this year that “Monsanto is responsible for Paul Francois’ suffering after he inhaled the Lasso product … and must entirely compensate him.” The court is said to be seeking expert opinion on how to gauge Francois’ losses in order to determine precisely how much Monsanto will be required to compensate him in the case. “

    in reply to: You're Dreaming If You Think The Euro Crisis Is Resolved #5808

    I also like charts. Excellent chart. Notice that the fluctuation from 1990 to 2007 is pretty small; now we have some huge fluxes.

    Dave… said
    “I found an intriguing study that suggested a linkage between high food prices and civil unrest in the MENA area. They had a chart I was particularly enamored of…naturally. Here is a link to the study, updated as of September 2012. “

    I think Spain is our next ‘fire in globe”. Volatile there.

    I’ve recently found an interesting site that carries news on Occupy in different countries.

    I may post something from an article from that site as time permits.

    in reply to: too many oil refinery fires #5675

    I would attribute the Richmond, CA refinery fire to negligence on the part of Chevron. They didn’t even tell the people of the city for 3 hours after the explosion that the air was poisoned. Only later did they tell people in the city to close their doors and windows and stay inside. Well over 1000 people in Richmond and neighboring cities were treated in hospitals, that doesn’t take into account those who simply pulled out their inhalers to self medicate their long standing asthma.

    The Northern part of the Bay Area starts with Richmond, and touches on smaller towns to the north and then flows seamlessly into the southern municipalities of El Cerrito, Albany, Berkeley on down to Emeryville and Oakland. I couldn’t smell it, but I know those who suffered from their asthma.

    I just got a flyer at the OWS anniversary in SF, that a branch of Occupy is calling for Operation Chevron Shutdown on Oct 30. After summer trainings, I expect the younger Occupiers are ready to try out some new techniques. I’ll probably go to it and see how it goes.

    in reply to: Bernanke And Draghi Are Not Trying To Save Our Economies #5638

    Adam said: “Of course, we could endlessly way some personal odds against others in an effort to come closer to a prescription for either paying off debt or not, but, it’s ultimately a decision that’s made based on one’s personal situation. That being said, we should be explicit about the class-based nature of this issue. There are a vast majority who cannot ‘get out’ of debt. Purporting that ‘getting out’ of debt is some sort of ‘non-violent revolutionary action’ is classist to its core. How comfortable a position to take when one has access to the resources to do so! “

    This is a really good point. There is an obvious age and class divide here. Younger people are now saddled with Student Loans that can never be shed. Older people may have gotten close to paying off a mortgage started decades ago. As a senior with some money, I now plan for helping kids and grandkid to weather the future storms.

    Then there are Dave’s Plan A and B scenarios. That is more or less how I set up my life plans, with usually about 3 plans on track at a time that include my extended family and friends.

    With some friends who have fallen off the back of the truck job-wise etc, I plan for my extended world of people.

    In reading some of the links to what is happening in NY with debt protests, I found my favorite slogan : “You are not a loan.”

    Stay tuned to the Occupy movement’s activities this month. NYC and SF are sure to have some demonstrations that the “problem” has not faded away.

    in reply to: Those Dutch Tulips Ain't Looking All That Rosy #5598

    To John Day

    Thanks for your continued explanation of GM wheat. Very interesting.

    In reading your links to the various articles I noted one thing.

    You said: “Here is some information from Natural News, including press announcements from down-under and an oral explanation by Dr. Heinemann. (They misstate the location of the University of Canterbury.);

    It’s a good article, but I noted one very important paragraph.

    “CLARIFICATION: This note was added after initial publication to help clarify the status of GM wheat. Currently, GM wheat is not commercialized. It’s not yet found in everyday foods. But the GMO industry is trying to commercialize it while skipping any real safety testing and buying off regulators to declare it safe. GM corn, of course, is already widely used in foods, as is GM soy. But GM wheat is not yet in the food supply. If we don’t resist the domination of the biotech industry, however, it soon will be.”

    So the upshot is to avoid corn and soy at this point, but to keep alert to wheat being sold that’s GM wheat.

    I’m really horrified that more rules aren’t in place protecting the public from these food practices with out many studies proving the safety of modified foods.

    in reply to: Coins and Metal Composition #5572

    Thanks for this info.

    I’ve had a retail shop for almost 24 years and basically, I have never counted the pennies and nickels at the end of the day. While our register tape is often very close to the drawer, there is a real standard deviation of about 1 – 4 %, so the nickels and pennies just don’t make a real difference. We also keep a penny/change bowl at the check out area for people to drop the excess weight into. Often dimes and quarters show up in there too.

    I have been hoping that pennies will be discontinued, and now I hope the nickels will drop out too.

    Now I wonder what effect will the deflation we expect, have on small change? Will people suddenly find that the jars of pennies from pockets are their bank of the mattress?

    in reply to: Spiritual Musings on Collapse #5570

    Good luck with your blog, Ash.

    I’m glad you will have a place to quote a bunch of the bible. While that is not my path, I’m glad it gives others a boost and you have a place other than TAE to discuss all that.

    I have appreciated your past thinking and compassion for the 99% and your essays that have focused on helping each other in the “coming hard times”.

    Community is an important aspect of prepping for the future and you have frequently stood up for the poor and underdogs of this world. That is one aspect of Xianity that I appreciate. The Catholic Workers are one group that have done some really fine work and the Quakers too.

    Again – best of luck to you.

    in reply to: Hungary Throws Out Monsanto AND The IMF #5422

    This just came to my email today. Interesting that Monsanto is so much of a Goliath with US backing. While I don’t think GMOs are necessarily a bad thing, the problem is the sneaky monopolistic style of Monsanto.

    I don’t know if I’ll be going to this, but it’s note worthy that it’s a point of unification for the Occupy Movement.

    (As far as the leader of Hungry goes, who knows? He may be a dictator with lots of cronyism going on, but he seems to have one thing right about the monopoly company and its supporters in the US and IMF.)


    OCCUPY MONSANTO – Day of Action September 17 – Everywhere

    (Some of us in the San Francisco Bay Area are planning on going to the action in Davis: – If you don’t see an action near you, organize one yourself with the resources below)

    Organize locally to take action for a decentralized occupation of Monsanto facilities around the world on September 17, 2012

    Whether you like it or not, chances are Monsanto contaminated the food you ate today with chemicals and GMOs. Monsanto controls much of the world’s food supply at the expense of food democracy worldwide. This site is dedicated to empowering citizens of the world to take action against Monsanto during the week of September 17th, 2012.

    August 27, 2012

    GCU Media Liaison: Adam Eidinger 202-744-2671

    At least 60 Protests to Target Makers of Genetically Engineered Foods on Anniversary of Occupy Movement

    WORLDWIDE – An expanding network of concerned individuals known as Occupy Monsanto has emerged over the past 8 months staging numerous protests at companies connected to the global trade of genetically engineered foods, also known as GMOs. The network announced today that on September 17, 2012 protests will begin for an entire week in St. Louis, home of the Monsanto Corporation, and across the US including California where voters will decide if they will label GMOs this election and worldwide in Argentina, Canada, Germany, India, Philippines, and other countries where concern over GMO impact on the environment and human health is growing.

    The protests will vary in size and nature but are unified in pushing back GMO food into the lab from which it came. An interactive map with times, dates and locations of the 60+ protests can be found at .

    Occupy Monsanto means to confront the industrial agriculture system head-on. Some protests could result in widespread arrests of people who choose to engage in non-violent civil disobedience. Despite the peaceful nature of these planned protests, organizers are concerned about surveillance of by the US Department of Homeland Security and law enforcement agencies worldwide. Nevertheless Occupy Monsanto protests will feature costumes made of bio-hazmat protective gear that can also protect against pepper spray from police who have routinely attacked occupy protests in the past year.

    “There is something wrong when a chemical manufacturer, the same company who made Agent Orange, controls the US food supply,” says Jaye Crawford, a member of the Genetic Crimes Unit in Atlanta, Georgia that has planned a week of events. Info: .

    “Wall Street and the American political elite have underestimated and even ignored our potential to effect rational policy change on GMOs which would include labeling for GMOs and restrictions on GMO cultivation,” says Gene Etic an anti-GMO campaigner based in Washington, DC. “If Occupy Monsanto’s anti-GMO actions are successful, after September 17 the media and increasingly more voters will ask tough questions about these experimental GMO crops especially within the context of the Presidential election, as that office holds the power to determine American food policy,” says Etic.

    “People are stirred by the evidence that GMO foods compromise human health,” says Rica Madrid, a member of the Genetic Crime Unit of Occupy Monsanto. “Politicians and their sponsoring corporations ignore public outcry over GMOs to protect huge profits over health. Since GMOs’ introduction to the food supply in the mid 1990’s, food allergies have expanded according to Center for Disease Control data,” says Madrid.

    “By purchasing influence via massive campaign donations, Monsanto ensures the essential duties of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are neglected. One example of this corporate coup is President Obama’s appointment of Michael Taylor, former Monsanto Vice-President and legal council for the chemical company, to head the FDA’s food safety efforts despite his obvious conflict of interest,” says Ariel Vegosen, a member of the Genetic Crimes Unit. She adds, “Monsanto is the biggest maker of genetically engineered crops so it must be stopped before it is too late to shift to healthy organic agriculture practices as a result of widespread genetic contamination by GMOs. ‘Coexistence’ as defined by the USDA of Organic and GMO crops is a myth.”

    “At the US State Department it’s apparent Monsanto has duped leaders in Africa to ask the US for foreign aid in the form of GMO technology and equipment,” says Monsanto shareholder Adam Eidinger who last year walked from New York to the White House in Washington, DC with hundreds of other food activists to demand labeling of GMO foods. “The generous use of US tax dollars, endorsed by the likes of rock-star Bono and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, a former legal council for Monsanto, is actually another taxpayer funded subsidy for Monsanto’s pesticide and herbicide hungry crops.”

    Occupy Monsanto will be heard at the offices and facilities linked in the GMO food system. In St. Louis a major anti-GMO conference will take place in the same location as the ’12th International Symposium on GMO Safety.’ A lead organizer of the conference is Barbara Chicherio who believes, “‘Monsanto’s push to control agriculture and what people are eating poses a great threat not only to consumers in the US, but to farmers and communities throughout Latin America, Africa and Asia.” Info on the conference is at .

    Media may arrange interviews with by contacting Adam Eidinger at 202-744-2671 or write to

    Visit for more information and to see video and photos of protests from earlier this year. All images and video are available for free and unrestricted use by members of the media.

    Step 1: Choose your target
    There are hundreds of Monsanto facilities for your protest convenience. Pick your poison on our Facilities page…

    Step 2: Form a plan
    Do you want to make signs, banners or props? Will people dress in costumes? Are you bringing tents, noisemakers, media recording devices? Will you perform a chant, speech, or ceremony? There are so many ways to express your outrage at Monsanto’s devastation of our food, health, and environment, and many considerations…

    Step 3: Take action during the week of September 17th, 2012
    Join groups across the world for a global week of action at Monsanto facilities. Make this a week Monsanto will never forget as we unite with a single voice: OCCUPY MONSANTO!

    in reply to: Everything Won't Be Alright #5421

    Dave said –

    “Again – do we have a successful case of anarchist society for a large number of people? 320 million is the number I’m thinking of. I’d like some inkling that the place we’re jumping to is actually BETTER than the place we’re jumping FROM – and that most of us will be able to make the transition alive.

    Communism in the small scale worked fine, but it didn’t scale well; things turned out a whole lot different than people expected it would. Let’s call it the failure of the human element.”

    Why the assumption of the need for a “society for a large number of people?” I think this is a buy-in of Global capitalism thinking. Why not tribal/village/city-state sized society?

    The need for localization will become imperative as the supply chains collapse. This is what the Transitions Town model is about. I rather like the idea of lots of diversity for the up-coming demise of civilization-as-we-know-it. Biology and evolution is based on diversity being a way of survival, so that the tails of the bell-shaped curve become longer to provide many possible points of survival.

    Naturally I hope for a society of social support for its weaker members, but it’s quiet likely that some kinds of fascism with coercive elite will do well too. The fragments of this civilization may be a Dark Ages, but if we look closely at the post-Rome Dark Ages, that was a time of small diverse principalities. Are we looking at that period from the point of view that Big is Better? Could that have been a time of simplification and regeneration in some places?

    Just some thoughts on Small is Beautiful, when it comes to social groups.

    in reply to: Everything Won't Be Alright #5410

    I want to thank you for your stimulating comments.

    While I haven’t read Kropotkin (sp?), I have read David Graeber’s book “Debt” which you have likely also read. He makes some very interesting distinctions on kinds of Debt. I think what most here are talking about is not wanting the dunning phone calls, letters, and contacts to one’s employer that are the one of the worst aspects of becoming bankrupt. Not using any credit cards is no big deal, but so many things seem to depend on having one.

    The other kind of Debt is the ageless one of owing favors among friends and neighbors. This is the kind of Debt Network that TAE encourages people to expand, while they contract their use of money/credit Debt. The examples of neighbor helping neighbors and friends is the example that we all know many instances of. As people “localize their needs” and move away from Consumerism (out of necessity), we can hope to find a better kind of Debt, one of non-coercive mutuality.

    in reply to: Scary Police Guidelines #5308

    That link must have been very interesting.

    Now it has been pulled, saying that people were “misconstruing” it.

    Thanks for tagging them. You may have been one of the reasons they were afraid of public attention to their tactics.

    in reply to: Permanent Growth = Permanent Crisis #5037

    “Like Occupy Wall Street, the film insists that we must “take back” the American Dream. Like OWS, it never seems to grasp the fact that rather than recovering or restoring the A.D., we need to abolish it.”

    Strange that so many think that the Occupy movement is all for the American Dream. What we had here in Oakland and SF Bay Area, seemed more like a Localize and Decentralize movement.

    No one seems to have reported on the Occupy the Farm that happened in the East Bay Area.

    There was about a month where lots of local community people including Transition town groups etc came together to support the ideas of the Occupy the Farm. It was hoped that the Albany City council would vote against the UC Berkeley request for height limit exceptions etc so they could sell part of the track to Whole Foods a non union trendy store. With so many empty retail shops in the area it seems to be madness to build more shops to remain empty like loads of other newly built retail store fronts.

    This was a grand coming together of urban farmers who reject the American Dream of unlimited growth. To me this was a good start of the localizing needed in this area.

    in reply to: Our Debts Must be Redeemed #4864

    Since we’re quoting from David Graeber, I like his quip that just because he paid off his student loan, didn’t mean that everyone should have to – just because he got mugged, doesn’t mean that everyone should be.

    I got to hear him speak last November in SF. He’s a charming bright guy.

    in reply to: Rage Against the American Dream #4764

    Conservatives impacted CA, starting in the 70s when Gov. Regan opened the doors of mental hospitals. Since then local counties and cities, have been responsible for the mentally ill. What do they do with them? Why just wait till they have broken a law and then throw them in jail. (Jails are like businesses, don’t fix it or business will decline.)

    Sometimes an ordinance exists that can lead a schizophrenic or brain-damaged-by-amphetamines person to be put in a mental hospital. They even stay there for 72 hours, occasionally longer, if they are put on meds in a longer term facility. Then they are given a bus ticket back to their city or where-ever, where they can toss the meds.

    I have seen this happen over and over again with one ongoing relative. So where is the “safety net” of kindness and concern? Oh, that is too expensive and might infringe on some personal rights. Locally a young man murdered a man with a flower pot, when he was trying to get into his house where the “supposed girl friend” was. This schizophrenic’s family had been trying to get him help, but he kept being returned to the community.

    I wonder – perhaps this incident of the shooting spree (why are guns so easy to get?) is a mirror of the violence of our society, but I think it is also a mirror of the uncaring, neglectful, drop-them-off-the back-of-the-truck, attitude our society has towards our needy citizens, whether their needs are economic or mental health treatment or drug treatment.

    in reply to: Goodness Gracious! Great Wall's on Fire! #4062

    Steve from Virginia said
    “You have to define ‘assets’, most of the world’s arable land is already improperly cultivated, most of the world’s fisheries are over-exploited, most of the world’s forestry resources exhausted, etc. You cannot redistribute a cut forest or ‘buy’ new topsoil for Ukraine. Once a resource is gone, it’s gone. “

    Excellent point about the assets. They may not be worth as much as they could be, but I think the differential between the top 1% and the bottom 40% is still valid. Certainly the bottom 40% will get the exhausted and poisoned assets. And maybe that is the real point that the top will get enough to live on and the bottom will just die off for lack of useable resources. If we keep to this wealth inequality, that’s the likely outcome. Those of us who get lucky enough to be in the middle will get the dregs.

    On the topic of GOLD.
    I was driving with some friends along the Sacramento river and delta area and our friend and guide who works for the Dept of Agriculture pointed out a lot of “gravel pits”. He said that lots of those are popping up recently, but what they really are is hunts for gold washed down ages ago before the 49ers polluted the river and bay from 1849 – 1860s. So looks worth turning that poor farm land into a gravel pit.

    in reply to: Goodness Gracious! Great Wall's on Fire! #4054

    Steve from Virginia said –
    “What is needed today for industrial expansion is credit expansion not less. Credit is foundational necessity for industrialization, not parasitic upon it.”

    Thanks, Steve fV for the insightful post. I only have one question.

    Why do we ‘need’ industrial expansion’? It seems that might be good/necessary for the system of capitalism. But really what we need more than general expansion is re-allocation of business and the things money can buy. We don’t need new models of cars or new plastic gadgets from China, we need jobs that can give poor people more of the money wasted on ‘middle class’ unnecessary consumerism. the bottom 50 % of the world only gets 1 % of world assets. The top 1 % of the world has 40 % of world assets.

    If 50% of the world is currently living on only 1% of the world assets, then we don’t ‘need’ to be in overshoot. What we need is a democratically equal allocation of all these goods. Again it’s the ‘middle class’ consumerism that is eating us alive, not the population.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #3981

    Wow, this is really a great ink blot. We are all seeing different things or perhaps just different parts of the elephant.

    Not surprisingly I see community efforts, while others see the owners tricking the sheeple.

    I think the “discensus” (as coined by JMGreer) here is a good thing, like a variety of hybrid seeds blowing in the wind. Our diversity will be needed, since there is apparently no “answer” to our predicament.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #3971

    I echo what someone else said – ‘this is a breath of fresh air’. And more than the freshness of it is the call to look for an arrow pointing us to constructive thought and activity.

    Ash said
    “As you may have guessed, my version is not the EASY one to follow. It is not even the one I practice in most aspects of my own life, because I find it much too difficult. Yet, it is still what I believe to be true. Faith is not about a care-free attitude or an unquestioning, dogmatic belief in certain laws or truths. It is about time, effort, logic, critical examination, emotional stability, and, ultimately, free will.”
    If you want to have faith in the survival of humanity through these trying times, you must be dilligently intent on acquiring it through your thoughts and actions”.

    While many here refer to religion for their guide, I look at Free Will and Diligence as the best ways to Faith. Actually I don’t think we need an unreasoned Faith, but a rounded look at our fellow humans. Some see evil and self-serving power hungry humans, the “Illuminati”, if you will, but I more often see neighborliness, community cohesiveness and generous sharing of time, if not resources. For me the whole Occupy movement is a sharing of the pain of all levels of our society as we drop from middle class to unemployed. Out of this movement I have been allowed to see what I think are the seeds of the next urban step of salavage and sharing in the Squatters in vacant buildings.

    Bot said
    “We need to have faith in the people around us. In that way faith is similar to trust. Trust in my mind is the plural of faith and involves a contract between people……I suppose faith’s opposite is despair. The shock of loosing faith could easily lead you there…And perhaps the only antidote is for us to be faithful to the people we love….”

    BotBlogger has focused on the real Faith – in people. I agree.

    Community and people are the best answer. I think we have lots of evidence that shows how important the social aspect of humanity is. Unfortunately too often the power/greed aspect of war and the ‘rich getting richer’ is the focus of history, yet what we don’t see is all the multitude of day to day co-operation and social enjoyment among people – that doesn’t make the news or the history books.

    Luk said
    ..We do need to believe in the possibility of a fair society, that impossible dream from the new testament : ‘a community of believers, sharing everything’

    I don’t know that we all need to live in communes, but the co-operative spirit is very much alive in the Occupy Movement. When the UC Berkeley Farm was occupied, many many people from the nearby parts of Berkeley and Albany came out to donate food and supplies to the farmer/occupiers.The local Transition Town elists forwarded info on events at the Farm. for me this is the icon of the ‘I Can’ of Occupiers.

    Fuzzy said
    Building an artificial cage (natural ones seem to work on occasion) to keep anyone from getting too much power and subsequently wrecking society might be possible, but without taking this trait into account I feel as though we’re basically taking a shot in the dark.The only other solution I’ve been able to think of so far is to get enough people to really understand this, making them freely choose to limit the power they compete for and to act as a normative force whenever someone takes more than they should.’

    That’s why laws and regulations are necessary – to limit people with power. Certainly self-regulation of Banksters has failed. The imperfections of greed will continue, but when people co-operate the scarcity mentality of greed is less necessary. Our media and capitalist consumerism promotes that “need” for goods, that addiction. When the coming Crash hits the fact is we will just go ‘cold turkey’ and money for the unnecessary dries up. Probably most of us here on TAE have quit buying on impulse and are using our cash for prepping. All those people whose unemployment has run out or who have taken early retirement sure have tightened the belt. I agree with Ash here –

    Ash said
    The key thing to understand is that we all have the tools necessary to change, and to free ourselves from our material desires and addictions, constantly reinforced by the system.
    …but I think there are good reasons to believe that humanity’s most trying times could produce its most passionate push for personal freedom and love towards one another.

    These ‘trying times’ will likely bring out some interesting responses to what RE says below.

    RE said
    “Finally, the toughest thing to deal with in terms of Prep is the Political consequences in the near term here of increasing Fascism, the likelihood of War and Conscription coming down the pipe and how to negotiate that shitstorm while it is underway. Finding good solutions to that is much tougher than just the paradigms for living afterward if you survive are.”

    I expect that the social side of people could turn into ‘underground railroads’ for the issue of prisons and conscription like it did in the 60s & 70s. In city neighborhoods where there are a lot of vacant/foreclosed on houses, already neighbors are supporting the squats and recommending good places to use. The hardest challenge will be prison camps for squatters and occupiers. Perhaps we can hope that the economics of it all will close down prison for victimless crimes.

    Sorry if this is rambling, but there were lots of good points I wanted to respond to.


    Good thread of discussion.

    Ash said:
    “The only thing that changes is that financial speculation, fraud, misrepresentation, embezzlement, etc. became more common because the system NECESSITATED those things. We should actually view these developments as a form of desperation on the part of the elites who are trying to maintain the current system…”

    A recent item in ZeroHenge suggests the end of 2012 into 2013 as a time for the US unwinding. Certainly TPTB will keep all those plates in the air as long as possible, especially with the November election. They are getting more and more desperate, with more and more “consolidations” of companies as growth at any cost is pursued.

    Something Greenpa gave as a link was to the underground market and the new “networking” of workers companies. It makes me think that is the next wave of “growth” companies as we get in to a Salvage economy.

    I’m still an optimist about the things that will grow out of the decline of capitalism. There was an inspiring OccupyTheFarm situation in Berkeley area. A long running debate on what UC should do with selling it to a Big franchise grocery store and for a ball park, OR to set up a community farm in that area. Naturally the Occupy group was evicted after a few weeks of getting their crops started, so that the UC profs could do their classes. (3 out of 4 profs wanted the Farm to stay and share together, but…”ringleaders” were arrested and others evicted.)

    The Oakland/Berkeley area has TransitionTown groups along with numerous Urban Farms. (I have my chickens almost ready to start laying.) The whole urban farm movement is growing here and to me that is a good sign that some people at least are awake to the impending descent of capitalism. The OccupyTheFarm gathered a lot of support here and is a sign that alternate structures are developing.

    With so many young people out of jobs and homes, abandoned houses are more and more being squatted complete with raised bed farming. It seems as if all this is completely under the radar of TPTB.

    To me this is a very positive development of co-operative support among people.

    PS Glad to seem some names from the old site again.

    in reply to: China is Missing Its Own Targets #3509

    “A population already squeezed to death by high costs of living, horrible conditions of working and no return on savings, only to see the same destructive policies implemented over and over again, will not be a happy population for much longer.”

    I’ve read some amazing articles on the massive unrest in China. Not just the 18 girls who committed suicide from jumping off the top of the factory, but massive numbers of strikes and demonstrations that seem to never be mentioned in MSM. I’ll look for info on these.

    China has a past where workers were honored (at least by lip service) and they fought back against the Japanese and later over threw a government. Conditions are so bad today, I expect we only hear the tiniest amount of info from TPTB there.

    in reply to: DNS outage #3484

    Ahh, now I understand what happened to the look of the blog. I had the bookmark still at dot org.

    Thanks for the clue.

    in reply to: We're Not Gonna ____ It #3433

    Only 40 – 65 people arrested? Jeeze, Oakland had more than 400 kettled and arrested on Jan. 28 with injuries no one bothered to mention.

    I was on the Medic response texting line on May 1 and there were at least 2 head injuries when only about 15 targeted people total were arrested.

    Still 3 – 6 thousand demonstrators is not really small. What I notice the most though is that, people are not really angry enough for really big demonstrations like the ones last fall where we were all so angry at the Banksters. This was just a symbolic demo.

    When we start to bail out Businesses like Exxon/Mobile that are banking on economies of spread as they gobble up more and more diverse kinds of business, then the S… will really Hit The Fan and people will pour out onto the streets.

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