Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Good morning to all of you. Thunderstorms rumbled through last night. The only we see here are bits of leaves from the taller trees but no damage around here. The gardens are nicely moist and everything is intact. West of here is another story. There they had straight line winds gusting to 100 mph which topples trees and power lines. According to the news some 250k people are still without power and several of the commuter train lines are out because the power lines are down. Right now--we have clouds but earlier we had a couple of brief sun and a brief shower. The temperatures are supposed to be cooler for the next five days--which I definitely appreciate.

I agree with you, Kay. I also feel like crawling into bed and pulling the covers over my head. I saw the news clips of Jon Huntsman's announcement of his candidacy for the Repthuglican nomination for the Presidency. The only thing that I agree with is his assessment that America is a much less compassionate country. Eli at Firedoglake has a nice piece that reflects my own feelings about our 'United States of Bass-Ackwardia."

Well, the common wisdom was right and Prime Minister Papandreou did win his confidence vote. And his government plans to carry through its program of severe cuts to government employees and services, massive tax hikes (in a country where tax evasion is a national sport), and sales of public assets to private interests. What I find really pathetic about this situation is that the money the expect to get from the EU and IMF is a loan that will have to be paid back (sometime) which is more money drained from Greece in the future and the respite the money provides will be only temporary. I am entirely in sympathy with the Greek protestors--all their pain will benefit only the international banks and their share holders. Isn't progress wonderful--we now have the means to turn entire nations into debt serfs for the foreseeable future. I wonder how many other populations will be enslaved to the international banks before we are done.

But of course there is plenty for me to feel disgusted about on this side of the pond. Here is one example. This sounds like the program a lot of consumers followed for the last 30 years (and which some are still trying to follow): max out one card, get another and max it out, into the infinite future. Instead the small banks borrow from TARP and pay off the TARP loans with loans from the Small Business Administration getting out from under the onerous restrictions (especially on executive compensation).

Foreign Policy In Focus has a cute little poem this morning. Ten Little Republicans is first in its line up, so head on over and have a chuckle.

The Mail Online reported that the water industry trade group has sent legal letters to weather forecasting companies in the UK ordering them not to forecast drought warnings and possible 'hosepipe bans. Why? Such warnings might negatively impact the water companies' stock prices. One of the companies that received the letters accurately predicted the recent drought. Talking about killing the messenger!!

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