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WARM AND DRY weather conditions occurring through mid week will transition to hot and dry during late week, with widespread triple digit heat becoming increasingly probable Friday through Sunday. Elsewhere, a marine airmass will keep coastal areas cool, though periods of afternoon sunshine will be possible mid to late week resulting in moderating temperatures near sea level. (NWS)
JIM SHIELDS ON COUNTY COUNSEL'S POT INITIATIVE OPINION
(Original Opinion Conclusion)
“If a referendum petition targeting only Footnote 6 were to gain enough signatures, there are three possible results as to what a court might do. First, it is possible that a court might conclude that a referendum as to a single footnote is impermissible, and rule that the petition is invalid. Under this scenario, the ordinance would proceed as if the petition was never circulated. Second, it is possible that a court might find that the referendum petition is valid, but that Elections Code section 9145 requires the prior ordinance to be repealed before enacting a modified version. If so, then implementation of the remainder of the ordinance may be delayed for several years while the County undergoes environmental review. Third, it is possible that a Court might determine that while Footnote 6 is suspended and/or repealed, the balance of the ordinance continues as originally enacted. Of these three possibilities, I believe that the first is the most likely, but the lack of any authority directly on point and the significant ambiguity in this area gives me a relatively low level of certainty.”
* * *
I’ve purposely deferred addressing CoCo’s legal opinion(s) because you rapidly begin to lose people’s interest with discussions on legal theories, precedent, etc. We’ve been going back and forth exchanging precedent, relevant citations, and dicta on this bogus issue for the past three weeks. He modifies his opinion each time I give him citations trumping his different opinions. We anticipated the County would probably attempt this tactic, so we were prepared for it. Yes, there is a Severability Clause in the Ordinance and I’ve cited that fact to refute Curtis’ claim that the 10% Rule is not severable. Curtis actually signed off on the format of the Ordinance, including the Severability Clause. As someone who has negotiated hundreds of major and minor Collective Bargaining Agreements, I can tell you we always included Severability Clauses in each and every one, for obvious reasons: You don’t want the entire CBA, or in this case, Ordinance, struck down on constitutional or other legal reasons, such as a referendum.
Here’s the clause:
“Section 14. Severability. — If any section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase or portion of this ordinance is for any reason held invalid or unconstitutional by a decision of any court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this ordinance. The Board of Supervisors hereby declares that it would have passed this ordinance and each section, subsection, sentence, clause and phrase thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections, subsections, sentences, clauses or phrases be declared invalid or unconstitutional.”
Likewise Curtis’ argument that the 10% Rule is too “narrow” an issue for a referendum is laughable. The primary purpose and objective of the New Ordinance is cultivation expansion. The only reference to the singularly major foundation of cultivation expansion in the Ordinance is the 38-word sentence tucked away as asterisk 6 in Appendix A.
It’s a footnote, albeit the most important footnote in the entire Ordinance. Without that footnote, by definition, there is no expansion.
By removing through referendum repeal of that footnote, everything else in the Ordinance remains effective and unchanged, including the zoning table set out in Appendix A.
By the way, the circus is definitely in town now. The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition apparently is working with somebody here (we suspect it’s one or perhaps several of the big growers) to cause probs for Referendum. We also anticipated that but I thought they’d wait until dust settled on signature gathering, and then start their campaign once election is set. So they must be going for an early K.O. to keep us off the ballot. Here’s their opening salvo: Citizens for Sustainable Agriculture FPPC#65279; Defending Mendocino County’s Future. Mendocino is finally headed in the right direction on cannabis. A referendum will provide years more of illegal grows, stolen water & political fights while our community suffers. Act now to protect our future.”
— Jim Shields
A MAN called for help this afternoon when he apparently became stuck on Frog Woman Rock about 300 feet up. Frog Woman Rock, formerly Squaw Rock, is south of Hopland and a prominent Mendo landmark on Highway 101. I've never heard of anyone attempting to climb its face, but it won't be easy getting him down. Stay tuned.
A COMMENTER thinks the towering boulder might now be called Idiot Rock. Lyman Palmer's 1880 "Mendocino County History," a history composed, of course, without consulting the Indian old timers who knew all about the monolith, which was and may still be, important to them, says, “This early landmark, also called Lover's Leap, is associated with the purported legend of a 19th-century Sanel Indian maiden, Sotuka. Her faithless lover, Chief Cachow, married another; all three were killed when Sotuka, holding a great stone, jumped from the precipice upon the sleeping pair below.”
UPDATE 2:12 p.m.: The Incident Commander reported the climber was successfully extracted from the rock face and is now on the roadside receiving medical attention. We're waiting for the details of getting the guy down from the rock.
OAKEY JOE MUNSON, pioneer marijuana planter, told me today, "Anybody who's growing now is nuts. All the greenhouse dope has flooded the market. Prices are through the floor. A lot of people can't sell what they're sitting on, and they're sitting on a lot."
MERE ANARCHY LOOSED. Oakland's police chief, LeRonne Armstrong, said there were so many shootings and deaths on July 4 that police were not able to deal with the illegal fireworks and sideshows that were also cropping up throughout the city. There were seven shootings that began Sunday evening and didn't conclude until about 10 a.m. on Monday.
HOW ABOUT BIG AG?
I keep reading about the seriousness of the drought and the need for conservation of every precious drop of water. Homeowners and the general public are encouraged to water plants and gardens less, take shorter showers and only have their car washed at a station that recycles its water. I am all for these measures and will do what I can to help out.
What irritates and confounds me, however, is the fact that the general public only uses 20% of our available water. Agriculture uses the other 80%. So far I have heard nothing about what agriculture, and especially the giant ag conglomerates, is doing to conserve water. Let’s hear what they are doing.
CATCH OF THE DAY, July 5, 2021
FELIPE AMBROSIO-ENRIQUEZ, Woodburn, Oregon/Ukiah. DUI, no license.
JESUS BELTRAN-CHAIDEZ, Ukiah. DUI.
AMANDA CHAPMAN, Ukiah. Domestic battery, assault with deadly weapon not a gun, false imprisonment, criminal threats, damaging communications device.
VERONICA HERMOSILLO, Ukiah. Assault with deadly weapon with great bodily injury.
ROMAN LOPEZ-JIMINEZ, Ukiah. DUI, pot possession for sale.
ERICKA LUMIERE, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, failure to appear.
ADAM PEARSON, Ukiah. Battery, probation revocation.
JUAN SAAVEDRA-GUITIERREZ, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, criminal threats, damaging communications device, protective order violation.
MIGUEL SANDOVAL-ROMERO, Gualala. Domestic battery.
ANTHONY SOLLINI, Fort Bragg. Domestic battery, resisting.
TASHINA TILLMAN, Willits. Trespassing-obstructing business, resisting.
DONALD WAKELAND JR., Upper Lake/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
JEFFREY WICHERS JR., Ukiah. Arson of property, arson during state of emergency, vandalism.
LUIS ZAMORA, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
INTO THE QUAGMIRE with Donald Rumsfeld
by Patrick Cockburn
“A ruthless little bastard,” was President Richard Nixon’s verdict on Donald Rumsfeld as recorded by the Watergate tapes – and everything in his career, supremely successful until the Iraq war, confirmed that Nixon had read him correctly.
Rumsfeld relished such tributes to his toughness, but he was above all else a skilful bureaucratic warrior in Washington and never the warlord he pretended to be. As defence secretary between 2001 and 2006, he gloried in his role as America’s military chief avenging 9/11, but his arrogance and inability to adjust to the realities of the Afghan and Iraq wars produced frustration or failure on the battlefield.
Manoeuvre though Rumsfeld did to avoid responsibility for the Iraq war, he became the living symbol of America’s plunge into the quagmire. Typically, he responded to this by banning his staff at the Pentagon from using the word “quagmire” along with “resistance” and “insurgents”.
Rumsfeld started his career as a Republican Congressman from Illinois and moved on to serve four Republican presidents. He headed the Office for Economic Opportunity under Nixon, became defence secretary and ambassador to Nato in the Ford administration. As President Ronald Reagan’s special envoy to the Middle East, he travelled to Baghdad to shake hands with Saddam Hussein and assure him of US support in the eight-year war that the Iraqi dictator had launched against Iran. His camaraderie with Saddam reflected American strategy at the time, but it also showed Rumsfeld’s liking for people with power and his dismissiveness towards those without it.
It was Iraq that turned out to be his nemesis. He promoted his public image as the man who did not blench when al-Qaeda flew a plane into the Pentagon on 9/11. He had personally rushed to succour survivors, though witnesses later said that stories of his heroism were exaggerated. By that evening he was giving a press conference from a bunker in the Pentagon demonstrating that, though President George W Bush might have been evacuated to safety, his defence secretary was standing tall.
Within hours of the al-Qaeda attack Rumsfeld was looking to use it as justification for a war against Iraq. He sent a note to General Richard Myers, vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, looking for “best info fast … judge whether good enough [to] hit SH [Saddam Hussein] @same time – not only UBL [Usama bin Laden]”. This detail – along with much else in this piece – is derived from Rumsfeld: His Rise, Fall and Catastrophic Legacy by Andrew Cockburn.
Rumsfeld sought in his memoirs to evade responsibility for launching the Iraq war, claiming that President Bush had never asked him if he was in favour of it. The excuse is absurd since the defence secretary had constant one-on-one meetings with Bush who might well assume that the man in charge of gathering America’s armies for the invasion was in favour of doing so.
Rumsfeld enjoyed flying around the world in his giant C-17 transport plane, addressing assemblies of US troops, but he was essentially a palace politician. Not only did he have access to the Oval Office himself, but he fought determined campaigns to exclude other top officials from meetings with the president. He was even upset when Jerry Bremer, the newly-appointed US viceroy in Iraq, had a private lunch with Bush in May 2003.
Rumsfeld never had much understanding of Iraq or Afghanistan and probably did not think that he had any need to do so because the military might of the US appeared overwhelming. He reacted furiously when the chair of the joint chiefs of staff, General Eric Shinseki, told a Senate hearing that several hundred thousand troops might be needed as an occupation force after the invasion.
Rumsfeld’s pretence that he did not favour the Iraq war is easily disproved, but a better line of defence from his point of view was that almost no members of America’s political-military elite were opposed to the war at the time. Critics counter this by saying that military officers whose promotion was in the hands of Rumsfeld were unlikely to express scepticism about his plans.
Rumsfeld produced a much quoted but fallacious explanation which was used to explain why the US was so often caught by surprise by disastrous events in Iraq. He said that some facts were known and others unknown facts, “but there are also unknown unknowns—the ones we don’t know we don’t know”.
Rumsfeld said this in 2002 in relation to the shortage of evidence for the presence of Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq and it briefly won him a reputation for intellectual brilliance. But it masked the damning fact that there were “known knowns” about Iraq that were good reasons for believing that regime change would lead to a prolonged military and political crisis.
I remember a leader of the Iraqi opposition, who was very keen to overthrow Saddam, saying to me a few more months before the invasion that “I just hope that the Americans do not realize what they are about to do is not in their interests.”
(Patrick Cockburn is the author of War in the Age of Trump (Verso).)
WILL THE RUSSIANS SINK a British Ship the Next Time Around?
"While the general population is kept in total ignorance, western political elites are mostly composed of folks with very strong narcissistic tendencies combined with a total inability to learn from mistakes (both theirs and those of others). Needless to say, history does not inform these people either. Finally, since these folks can never admit a mistake, however minor or serious, they cannot change course; doubling down over and over is pretty much all they are capable of.”
THE COAST IRRELEVANTS' PHOTO SHOOT
Thank You to everyone who came to our first in-person meeting on 7/1 with Supervisors Ted Williams and Dan Gjerde. Meanwhile, here are 2 events for immediate attention:
Deadline For Democracy Event At Fort Bragg Town Hall At 5 Pm On July 7. Our message to Senators: "Pass the Voter Rights Bill Now!"
Indivisible Mendocino Hosting a Photo Booth with Senators Dianne Feinstein & Alex Padilla (cardboard stand-ins) set up for group & individual picture taking
Local residents and visitors will gather to get the message out loud and visible: Our democracy is on the brink! Our senators must pass the For The People Act, S1, NOW to save voting rights in America. Attendees can have their photo messages taken with (cardboard versions of) Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla. Photos will be sent to the senators and beyond via social media.
The For the People Act, S1, needs to be passed by July 30. It includes critically important democracy reforms such as new voter protections and election security provisions as well as a provision that bans partisan gerrymandering and requires states to establish independent redistricting commissions to draw fair Congressional maps. Many progressive organizations have declared this "Deadline for Democracy."
The Date For The Governor's Recall Election Is September 14
Check out this short video about the importance of "JUST SAY NO" from the Campaign to Stop the Trump Republican Recall of Governor Newsom
Stop The Trump Republican Recall Link <https://youtu.be/ObkSqE_rB7I>
WHAT BOOK SHOULD I REVIEW NEXT?
by Matt Taibbi
Earlier I had a stack of books on pre-order that I planned to read and review for the site, and with the review of Nice Racism, I’ve come to the end of that stack. I’ve been dreading the idea of reading an electoral post-mortem like Edward-Isaac Dovere’s “Battle for the Soul” — although it might be interesting to see if I could write a whole review based on a cover, since the one for that book is hilarious on its own — but would defer to readers if they think it’s worth a look back in that direction. Other recent new political books include “After the Fall” by former Obama aide Ben Rhodes (feels loathsome, but you never know) and Michael Wolff’s latest insta-book “Landslide.” Nothing jumps out at me as being terribly intriguing, so I appeal to you — anything you would like to see reviewed?
One pill makes you larger
And one pill makes you small
And the ones that mother gives you
Don't do anything at all
Go ask Alice
When she's ten feet tall
And if you go chasing rabbits
And you know you're going to fall
Tell 'em a hookah-smoking caterpillar
Has given you the call
When she was just small
When the men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you've just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving low
Go ask Alice
I think she'll know
When logic and proportion
Have fallen sloppy dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen's off with her head
Remember what the dormouse said
Feed your head
Feed your head
— Grace Slick
ON LINE COMMENTS OF THE WEEK
 There won’t be any revolution until the general population loses what is valuable to them. That includes abundant food, social media, computer games and tv. Technology has so removed the average person from the means of production that they don’t even consider what’s really happening. In this new world, injustice and rotten politics don’t matter as long as someone can watch their favorite tv programs, eat when they want and text their friends. Life is hard when you factor in material and emotional needs, so escape has always been desirable, and technology now has evolved to the point where it can provide escape for most people. But when supply and power lines break down, you’ll see widespread rebellion (real insurrection).
 People became possessed of the most amazing ideas, not only the rich and the powerful but especially them, especially in this period of flux after communism did a faceplant, as the USSR went down the tubes, as Yugoslavia broke apart and then flared into a nasty war and many other happenings. Happenings like that massive economic reshuffle called globalization. It seems that all this went to certain people’s heads making them draw the most extraordinary conclusions.
The central animating idea was that any significant decision-making ought to take place in corporate boardrooms and not in government offices or national legislatures. A lot of people at the upper end of American society thought this, not just those in C Suites. But the more things change and the more they remain the same…. It’s men that command men with guns that rule.
Over on this side of the pond, a similar sentiment took hold where multitudes of ordinary people took severe exception to this notion that they count for nothing, that their needs and interests don’t matter, that they’re all racists and idiots and deplorable anyway, and according to the traditional right-ward side of the political spectrum, they ought to accept their diminished economic circumstances with smiling equanimity as good patriotic Americans. Because that’s what the market sez. Well, phooey to all that.
Which places us where we’re at now. The whole globalism scheme was cockamamie from the start, with no economic sense behind it, with engorged corporate balance sheets looking like gigantic, bulging financial aneurysms ready to blow on the one hand and half the population that can’t make the rent on the other. Cockamamie or not, American Oligarchs and their Deep State errand boys are fully invested and are defending their newly found prerogatives tooth and nail. A good thirty years and more have been spent plus uncounted billions on this dispensation of things and no mere election and no one such as Trump is going to un-do it. Or even challenge it.
But the system they’ve devised is barking mad…
If history is any guide, and it usually is, this won’t end well for American shot-callers that screwed up so massively, nor the nation-state that they purport to run. Events are out of their control, and to a great part of the American populace, they look ridiculous. And if they want to stay on top, they can’t afford to look ridiculous.
 Truth of the matter is that we really don’t know very much about anything. Can’t trust the MSM, can’t trust what websites say. What sources can we trust? So it’s very difficult to come to the truth. All we can do is hope we’ve found answers to the best of our ability. I’ve come to know about covid through people I’m acquainted with who’ve had the virus. I can tell you it’s not just a bad cold. It is much more severe and longer lasting. This I have seen with my own eyes. I’m familiar with long-lasting effects of a disease: 50 years ago I came down with mononucleosis. My doctor ran a blood test and confirmed it. For 3 weeks I was so tired I slept about 16-18 hours every day. After that, I wasn’t up to par for a whole year.
I was bummed out because I had planned to go backpacking through Europe for a year. I never did. The year before I camped out across America with 2 women. At that time I didn’t realize that would be my final wild and crazy trip.
Yes, images can be edited to make them look better. Probably that virus photo was. So what? Doesn’t mean the photo didn’t show the virus, it just looked better.
The world is changing. Overcrowding has remade civilization. Such overcrowding breeds diseases. I fully expect newer and more virulent diseases from now on. The so-called elite may be taking advantage of the covid situation, but extreme change will occur with or without them. The slope of the exponential graph of change is now at the point where it is very noticeable.
I focus on living for today because there’s an inevitability to what life will be like in the future, so why worry about something I have no power to affect?
 RE: An affront to nature: the hills of the Emerald Triangle were the perfect cover for outlaws. You could thrive in the black market behind the redwood curtain. But that was when unit prices were astronomical. Times have changed. Weed isn’t heroin or meth. Almost all of the problems are due to the price. So I find it laughable that the cannabis culture cries for equity and legalization while still hoping for those black market prices. Those same folks cry in protest about the destruction of redwood forests but then whine incessantly about the over-regulation of their industry. It’s just a plant, right? So it makes sense to grow it in traditional agricultural areas that have water…. not in the backwoods, steep forests where we want to preserve nature. But Mendo County citizens want to try to preserve that culture…..then you realize that they’re growing it in Oklahoma now!
 Who mentioned M80s? M80s are great and can do some damage but I’ll go one better ; I give you the M1000. A few years ago a neighbor showed up with a box of them after a trip down south, “Equal to a quarter stick of dynamite. And they sell them at the fireworks store off I-95 in SCarolina”. He wasn’t lying, M1000s are awe inspiring, delivering a bright flash the size of a small car, and a loud blast that you can feel in your chest +100 ft away. Every once in awhile I’d hear one going off on my neighbor’s property and found out he was using them to blow up stumps. (So M1000s aren’t just for fun, there are practical applications too) What happened to Cherry Bombs is a good question. I haven’t seen a good Cherry Bomb in awhile.
 My local Habit a burger chain out of Santa Barbara has a sign on the door starting wages $16.75-$17.75 an hour.
This was considered a good head of household wage just twenty years ago.
The reality is these kids all expect $100k or no go.
I was talking to a fresh out of high school kid last week about working and his plan was to get a job at Chick-Fil-A long enough to qualify for unemployment and then get himself fired so he could go on unemployment to surf and travel. Great plan except so is everyone else.
PEOPLE LIVING IN THE HILLS, AN EXCHANGE
 I’d make the argument that every single grow, legal or not, that exists in the SoHum hills is an insult to the environment. The natural state of things, wet year or dry, is that from May-October it’s dry, and the creeks and the rivers that sustain the fishery rely on what was banked in the aquifers in the winter. That spring doesn’t come from nowhere – it’s all part of the same system. Arguments about the wine producers or the hay farmers or whatever are straw-man BS and “whataboutism” / they don’t address the very real fact that our rivers are dry and water diversion plays a big part in that. I don’t care if it’s weed or tomatoes, agriculture doesn’t belong in the hills – it’s an affront to nature.
 So, by your reasoning, people shouldn’t be allowed to make a life in the mountains? Making a living, feeding your family, usually is going to take some water, whatever you are doing. Nature is great, and there are WAY too many people in the woods, I agree with that. But people need to live and use water responsibly. My solution- large water tank for winter storage.
 I’m not suggesting that the hills be depopulated, I’m saying that it isn’t the place for commercial agriculture. To whoever inferred that I want people from dry areas to move here – nope. In SoHum and much of Mendo we ARE dry areas – one of the worst-off places for water right now is Mendo. To whoever wanted to educate me about gravity, the Central Valley farms exist for 2 reasons: huge public investment in water infrastructure and wells. They’ve overused the wells without allowing them to recharge so much that the land is sinking. The huge water projects are dry, and the water-intensive crops such as almonds have sucked up much of what there was. The only reasons that LA, Vegas, and Phoenix exist is mass storage in the form of reservoirs and mass delivery systems – an affront to nature on a much larger scale. These have been sustainable to a point, if you don’t care about salmon or the salinization of the Sacramento delta, but that’s ending soon. The Colorado River has been so overdrawn for so long that it too dries up before it reaches the ocean. Lake Powell is one of the biggest man-made disasters on the planet. But back to our area, people can live modest and sustainable lives in the hills. And if you can “water bank” in the wet season with off-stream sources, and do so in a way that doesn’t tear up the land so that sedimentation becomes a problem, go for it. But how many of these huge grows are doing that? Few if any, since weed is so water intensive. Back to my first point – it IS an affront to nature to have commercial agriculture in the hills. The history of the west is the history of water.
THE ICE CREAM FLAVOR NEXT TIME
by James Kunstler
A nation mesmerized by its own weakness wanly celebrated the long-ago and faraway memory of standing up for itself, while it passively endures the current orgy of tyrannical cancellation and suppression of anyone talking back to the present folks-in-charge. Over just a few years, this tyranny has grown like a toxic slime mold from such an unlikely place, the Internet social app ecology of Facebook, Twitter, and Google, as they took over the public arena — where the battle of ideas is supposed to live — and did the government’s dirty work, complete with adorable emojis. You’re fired!
Who will stand up to Zuck, Jack, and Sundar Pichai? Who elected these megalomaniacs boss of the USA? What will it take to end their reign of terror? Some sort of… revolution? (Shhhh! That must be a dirty word, even considering we just celebrated the high point of the American Revolution: The Declaration of Independence, signed July 4, 1776.)
Don’t look to “Joe Biden,” the nation’s putatively elected leader — about whose election back in November, 2020, you are liable to hear more about as the summer stickily unspools. Zuck, Jack, and Sundar managed to protect “Joe Biden” from the stupendous depredations of his offspring, Hunter Biden, recorded in explosive detail on a laptop the public was not allowed to hear about. Don’t look to the Department of Justice, supposedly “investigating” that horde of memos and emails detailing the Bidens’ influence-peddling to the CCP and others — they’re busy surveilling “white supremacists” on the apps run by Zuck, Jack, and Sundar. And for sure don’t look to the news media, that coalition of sell-outs and quislings, busy decoding the foreign policy moves signified in “Joe Biden’s” ice-cream flavor choices. (Rocky Road means: Oh, let China have that….)
Wondering who is actually running the “Joe Biden” government? Some of us out here are. (Do you think we’re allowed to say that?) For instance, have you tried googling the name Susan Rice lately? Remember her? Maybe not. “Joe Biden” appointed her Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council. From the looks of things across the country, you’d think her plate would be heaped mighty high, what with “insurrection” and other white mischief threatening to take down the republic. Anyway, I googled “news” for her. Hardly a goshdarn thing came up that wasn’t from months ago, and most of that was sheer puffery about how accomplished she is, and what a fabulous person. Don’t you wonder what her phone log looks like? All those calls to the Obama residence, day after day, hour after hour?
All of which raises the question: is the USA just floating merrily merrily down the stream of events under the beneficent reign of “Joe Biden” (Susan Rice, Barack Obama & Co…)? Or are we, rather, freefalling? I suspect it is the latter. And toward what? It being mid-year, I will venture a few guesses. Enjoy the summer while you can because Corona Virus is coming back in the fall and watch out for people who are vaccinated getting sicker than the un-vaxed. That will be a mind-bender, as if Americans are not already utterly perplexed and bewildered by one political swindle after another. The whining will drown out even the news of more “white supremacy.” But they told us….
An autumn wave of Covid-19 (one “variant” or another) would take out whatever remains of the service economy, the restaurants struggling just now to return to normality (ha!), the hair salons, the gyms, the florists, booksellers, sports, theaters, live music venues, what-have-you. Since we no longer have much of a manufacturing economy, the only thing left would be Wall Street — which was originally designed to raise money for the manufacturing and service sector but now only raises money for itself via the seemingly magical mingling of “leverage” with “liquidity” to conjure profit from black holes where the ghosts of productivity howl.
It’s some trick but, let’s face it, it’s still just a trick. Also in that picture is the weird three-legged race of deflation tied to inflation running both uphill and downhill at the same time like a nightmare out of M.C. Escher by way of Stephanie Kelton. The USA will be toting up a $3-trillion-plus deficit just for the current fiscal year at the same time that debt becomes ever more obviously unpayable. How does debt even mean anything if there is no prospect of paying it back? Especially in the form of financial instruments, namely: bonds. And how does a financial system based on debt behave when all that is the case? I guess we’re going to find out.
My guess would be a price collapse in financial instruments — abstract things represented by money — and then a collapse of money itself. You may be thinking: not a pretty picture. I know. And we thought the last days of the Soviet Union were bad in 1990. Hoo boy, are we in for a rough ride. One can hardly imagine the social side-effects of all that, but it would seem to imply people having a rather hard time finding something to eat, or getting anything else they need. Remember good ol’ Ross Perot talking about “a giant sucking sound?” Think of that against a background of things on fire. What flavor ice-cream will “Joe Biden” be ordering on Halloween?
(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)
WAR CRIME JEOPARDY (we state the name of the operation, you provide the details)
Yesterday's answer, Neptune Spear, was name of the 2011 raid in Pakistan to kill Osama Bin Laden. The Commander in Chief was Barack Obama.