Sunday, December 18, 2011

Good Sunday morning to you all.  Oh my, how time has flown.  Only a week till Christmas.  And two before this year ends.   I don't do resolutions.  I have always found that resolutions, like rules, are made to be broken.  I will begin the serious work of planning what I will plant in the gardens starting in January and when I will start the seeds.  Hmmm--I should probably get the seed starting trays in before we get a heavy snow that I would have to shovel to get into the shed.  And start making the newspaper starting pots.  I want to see how that will work out.

I saw the obituary for Vaclav Havel first thing this morning.  I remember watching the news of the Czechoslovak revolution in the 1980s.  I was a history grad student in Colorado at the time.  Now I am one who has to remember that what used to be Czechoslovakia is now Slovakia and the Czech Republic. How the map of Europe has changed in the last thirty years.

Now that the U.S. has declared victory and left Iraq the assessments of the costs and gains begin.  I think this one pretty well sums things up.  I think the key is near the end where the author writes that there is "simply no conceivable calculus by which Operation Iraqi Freedom can be judged to have been a successful or worthwhile policy."

Thanks, Kay.  I am glad I am not the only one to have trouble with the cf bulbs--and I don't have implants.  I don't mind being eco-conscious but not at the price of serious eye strain.

A couple of days ago I linked to the report of the historically low levels of the Danube.  This comes from a world away in drought stricken south China.  Xinhuanet posted a rather dramatic picture in its story from the same region.

All of the news this morning are ecstatic over the Senate's approval of a 2-month extension of the payroll tax 'holiday.'  I for one am not impressed with either the news media's ecstasy or the measure itself.  Here we are again bargaining over a month or two.  But I am also not impressed because the measure isn't final.  The House has to vote on it and those idiots are balking.  The Senate attached what will, if the measure finally passes, either be a gift to the oil industry or, they hope, a club to beat Obama with in the fall--a.k.a., Keystone XL.  The House wants more cuts to the health care reform measures and to put in the 'doc fix' so doctors who treat Medicare patients won't see their payments drop.  As with the debt ceiling extortions, the Repthuglicans will keep playing this game till the next elections.

I follow a number of blogs devoted to container and/or vertical gardening.  I especially like stories showing inventive ways to use items that would otherwise go into the landfill.  Tree Hugger has a nice post this morning showing one idea from Turkey.

Golem XIV presents a truly Byzantine labyrinth of financial details that should make anyone nauseous. He also explains rather clearly why MF Global's clients will be very lucky to get much of their supposedly sequestered funds back.  What is even more sickening is that this 'looting' is very, very legal.

I wonder how many remember the scene at the end of War Games where the computer learns that in some games 'the only winning move is not to play.'  That is certainly the case with Tic-Tac-Toe or Thermonuclear War and, maybe, in modern finance as this story from the Guardian demonstrates.  I get the feeling that most of us are merely turkeys to be plucked and trussed to our financial lords and masters.

1 comment:

Kay Dennison said...

You're welcome!!!! I refuse to change to cfl! If I do, I'll be in a world of hurts. Loved the link on Iraq -- very well said indeed. I never saw the sense of being there in the first place. And I sure as hell don't think we need to go to Iran as some of our thugs have contended.

I wish everyone had doctors like mine who earn a good living but still are dedicated to caring for everyone. I see nary a Mercedes in their parking lot!!