Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Good Wednesday morning to you all.  My goodness, how gloomy our skies have been of late.  Yesterday the sun teased us for a brief moment before sneaking back behind clouds.  We haven't had any much snow.  I almost forgot the few light flurries yesterday.  The temps were much too warm and the flakes way too few to accumulate.  The plants in the outside containers are still doing well.  I got the first of the seed wish books yesterday--the Baker Creek catalog.  They sell a fantastic number of heirloom seeds and I have several marked for possible purchase.  Gardening never really stops.  If you aren't actually working in the gardens you are assessing what you did last season and planning what you want to do next season.  (Hey, Hey!!  We have sunshine!!

Huffington Post presents a familiar argument this morning:  we would all be so much better off and more people would have jobs if only the big companies would use that mind-boggling cash reserve and hire people.  Maybe--maybe not.  Focusing on the cash reserves of the big multi-national companies and financial institutions ignores the other side of the problem--a consumer economy where the consumer can't consume.  And it also ignores several other facts.  For most of those companies, their profits don't depend as much as they once did on the U.S. markets.  And those companies are more often now engaged in something other than producing tangible products or services for sale to the consuming public.  Just this morning one of the big banks announced another lay in their investment division and back offices. Thanks to computerization and automation our big companies have been able to get along with far fewer workers but, contrary to the apologists for modern technology, the companies spawned by new technology never created as many jobs as were lost.

I have followed the stories, like this NY Times piece, detailing the problems of the U.S. Postal Service for some time.  As usual, I have conflicting thoughts on the matter.  I can't remember a time when we didn't have mail delivery six days a week.  I can very well remember the time before e-mail when the only instantaneous means of communication was telephone.  I can also remember a time when rural phone service was expensive and often involved party lines.  On the one hand I don't much like the potential loss of mail service or the inconvenience for rural and small town people who depend on the U.S. Postal Service.  They have already lost bus service and air service.  On the other hand, for me, the service has become less a service and more of an annoyance.  Our mail is now 90% advertising of one kind or another.  And every bit of that goes directly in the trash.  However, in the back of my mind, is the nagging concern about another bit of our 'infrastructure' crumbling away.  And the question of whether this country is still, truly, really a 'superpower' in anything other than our possession of the most nuclear weapons in the world.

Toby Wollin at Firedoglake summarizes the Huffington Post summary of the report on the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster that has been all but forgotten by the national media.  I am cynical enough that I am not at all surprised that the deaths of 29 miners as a consequence of repeated safety violations in the name of production hasn't yielded any action by our elected (mis-)representatives.  They are far more interested in making our economy safe for predatory capitalism.  I am not even surprised at the where number of violations.  I am totally blown away by the size of the report--80,000 pages.  I wonder if the verbiage is merely a means of obscuring the facts--a way of burying information in a blizzard of words.


Kay Dennison said...

It's all done with mirrors and they've dumbed down education enough that a LOT of people buy it.

Looking to the Stars said...

hi, our weather here has been very cold with lite snow flurrys. Very strange, we usually get at least an inch of snow when the weather is this cold.

I remember those things also with the post office. It will be strange not having sat. delivery.

I agree with Kay they have dumbed everybody down. Its the only way they can get people to buy their b.s.

Went to fb and posted this years pic, accepted all castleville invites espically yours. But, I had a shocker when I got on, a message from an old boyfriend. I broke up with him 21 yrs ago and never looked back because he was nuttier then a fruit cake. I was so shocked and scared that he had found out my married name and found me. I shook for 2 hrs, this guy is a big time stalker. I am debating about closing my fb page. the message was 10 months ago but I still don't like it.

Well, anyway so much for my stupid soap opera life, lol. take care