Here Thar Be Monsters!

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31.12.10

A Rearview Look Ahead

You may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
You may find yourself in another part of the world
You may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
You may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
You may ask yourself: well... how did I get here?

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the money's gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground

You may ask yourself
How do I work this?
You may ask yourself
Where is that large automobile?
You may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful house!
You may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful wife!

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the money's gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground

Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was...

--Once In A Lifetime, The Talking Heads

Two items in The Jakarta Post summarized 2010 for me. The first was a front page story about
how Jakarta police will control New Year's Eve traffic by closing roads. Now correct me if I'm wrong, but somehow closing off major thoroughfares just doesn't meet the logic test when it comes to reducing traffic snarls. The other item tells us that the US will pay Norway a billion bux to control greenhouse emissions, and the Weegies will in turn pay Indonesia not to cut down some forest areas in Borneo. Huh?

If I have to choose one word to summarize the year just past, it would be 'absurd.'Arthur C. Clark, the brilliant writer-cum-scientist, called 2010, "The year we make contact." He obviously didn't mean contact between brain synapses. Some of us will be waiting until midnight to find out just what sort of contact he was referring to

In the past year, we have seen America crash in the middle of a 'recovery,' Russia and China make nice without dollars, Europe go into the crapper, southeast Asia rise in prominence, Japan get nasty with its neighbor, the Koreas heat up again, Stuxnet become an actual word, and gold and silver hit the roof.

The European PIIGS have taken the only sensible course of action. When faced with a debt crisis, they immediately piled on more debt in order to pay off existing debt. They are now, of course, more in debt, which is a reasonable position to take in the situation.

The Dow Jones index in the States has shot to the Moon as the economy approaches that magic number of 100$ productivity, the point at which absolutely no one produces absolutely nothing. Meanwhile, the US Treasury continues to bail out those responsible for the global banking crisis by reearding their behavior, and even changing the laws to cover their tracks for them. To fund all this, since no one will buy US debt any more, the Treasury has begun selling itself its own debt, thus reducing US debt to near-junk status while at the same time igniting the fuse on the bomb that will later destroy the economy they are desperately trying to keep afloat.

In Indonesia, where raiding the public funds for personal gain is a national pastime, the Treasury jumped on the global bandwagon of bailouts for no good reason that anyone can see, and bailed out Bank Century to the tune of million of bux, which went nowhere that anyone can find. In addition, government agencies investigating other government agencies have found, surpise, no evidence of wrong-doing.

China is trying to figure out a way to cool its economy without cooling it. The economy is running red-hot from the trillions of bux flooding in, creating a massive and rich middle-class, which in turn wants all the gee-gaws that Western people used to have, which in turn is creating bubbles everywhere. It looks like the Lawrence Welk show over there. The government is tip-toeing around trying to piss on sparks while ignoring the wildfire. Should be fun to watch, at any rate.

In South America, nothing really changes much. Chavez was officially granted dictatorial powers that he has been using for years. Nice job, if you can get it. You can bet Obama has been taking notes. In Africa, all is status quo, with the exception of Cote d'Iviore, which is usually not in the news, but finds itself with feathers afuffle.

Once again, the global climate warming conference debated what to do about, guess...global warming in the midst of the coldest-ever winter in the northern hemisphere, while snow fell in parts of Australia, which is nominally having its summer right now. Two continents have been paralyzed by massive snow-fall. Meanwhile, the conference was hailed for making some headway in global hegimony (see Norway story above). One sensical thing did come out of this conference, however. It was held in Cancun instead of Copenhagen, so the news could at least carry photos of snow-free environs around the meetings.

Gold and silver have shot for the Moon, which is about the only sensible news to come out of the whole year. The same can be expected for the foreseeable future, so I will continue to buy my share of them, as I have done since 1999, when the stuff was $279 and $4.80 respectively. But I'm just some lone nut in the jungles of Borneo, right? What do I know?

So, basically, black continues to be white, alligators don't bite, birds fly backwards, and God didn't make the little green apples in the summertime.

It seems that 2010 was a year of paying for past mistakes. America suffered from the creation of the Federal Reserve System nearly 100 years ago. Europe suffered from a falacious political idea called socialism, which came into being around 100 years ago. Korea suffered from a war that started almost 60 years ago. China and Japan suffered from ancient hatreds and distrusts.Indonesia suffered from sustemic graft and corruption that is as old as the islands themselves, not to mention the accident of geology that places the country atop on of the most active regions on Earth. And the entire world suffered from a hidden effort to rule the globe that is hundreds of years in the making.

Two quotes come to mind, both from the same source: "My people perish for lack of knowledge," and "The Truth sahll make you free." So many mistakes from one simple idea...secrecy.

As anyone who has been married can tell you, the root of all stress begins with hiding information. The sheer amount of information that is hidden from "we the people" is astounding and the systemic stress that is created by hiding and keeping hidden simple facts has led us to so many problems, all of which are bubbling up out of the stew of history this year.

There is a man sitting as president of the US of A right now who was elected on the promise of 'transparency.' Since taking his oath of office, he has done everything in his power to make things 100% opaque. More lies, more hidden truths, more problems.

As C. S. Lewis said, if something becomes completely tranparent, then there is nothing at all. In the end, that is the best option for government. "That government governs best which governs least." Seems if we returned tho thes idea, so many of our current problems would disappear. There's no need for deficit spending when there's nothing to spend money on, seems to me.

So, given the idea that big government exists because we keep giving it more power, I have resolved to simply ignore it altogether. Maybe if everyone joined me in doing that, they would all wilt and fade away. Nice thought at any rate.

A good motto for 2010 would be, everything new is old again. As we close out the 'naugties' and begin the 'teens' decade, maybe now would be a good time to stop making the same damn mistakes over and over again. It's high time to leave the 20th century behind and start something new. We have seen what all the old ideas get us, so let's try some new ones.

It courld happen...

I

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