Coping: With War and Peace

No, I have not read Tolstoy’s “War and Peace” cover to cover.  But that’s OK, because our discussion here is not about the troubles between Russia and France.  It’s the troubles of today and how things in the international stewpot work out in the age of swaying populations

Here’s the problem in a nutshell: Who do we believe when comes to the mess in Ukraine and how do we shade our investment decisions with the possibility of wider war in Eastern Europe?

It’s not a simple question.  But it is one of our own making.

This assertion is based on two simple facts.  The first being the operations of the US State Department which sided with the right-wing/ultra-nationalists in Ukraine back in December.  If you remember the famous cookie episode.

.The second Western gaffe came at an April press conference (that I happened to catch on RT live on FTA) television.  In that episode, the EU announced to a shocked Vlad Putin that they had designs on a “European Union that stretches from Lisbon to Vladivostok.”

Except for one small detail:  What Putin had proposed was not the absorption of government authority from Eastern Europe, but rather an autonomous region.  But in April, the (idiots) of the European Union claimed ownership of the idea  and it was to be their trade area, not a shared one.

It’s like have one driveway serve two homes.

Putin’s announcement of support was for the idea of a shared driveway.  The European response was (essentially) to claim not only superior use rights of the driveway, but to  erect toll booths and begin traffic enforcement.

With a history of European invasions, that got to be too much and it has driven Putin into a difficult spot, since every nation has its share of ultranationalists just like we have ‘em in the United States.

Back in April/May I hinted that wars don’t come overnight; they cast a long shadow before them.

Six months is a decent starting estimate from mid April, so we still have another month or two to run before the actual outbreak of hostilities should be apparent.  But in the meantime we are in now is what amounts to foreplay.

The specific reason for mentioning this now is that a high-ranking group of former US officials have sent a letter to Germany’s Angela Merkel arguing that Ukraine should (among other things) not be fast-tracked into NATO membership for Kiev.

From the Russian standpoint, that would be the equivalent of hiring a SWAT Team to patrol the “shared driveway” and given the millions who died in defense of Russia in the Great War (WW II) that’s not the way to go about promoting peace.

Doubtless, many of the “My country right or wrong” crowd don’t want to question the “offishul” Western narrative (fairytale), but when we read the bio of Victoria Nuland of our State Department, we catch her links to the same thinking that founded the Project for a New American Century – another colossal foreign policy disaster.  The invasion of Iraq and excessive emphasis on war-making over diplomacy (not to mention the regime change mantra) are a few of their previous outcomes.

It was the PNAC philosophy of regime change that led to ISIS, too, but of course we don’t see that much in headlines.  But a note from my consigliore on point seems about right:

Per our past discussion.   This article actually has solid links which detail the US involvement in building up ISIS.
I, and probably you, have read all this information over the past three years, but this brings it together all the bits and pieces into one linked piece.  For some reason I missed Seymour Hersh’s article this spring on this, which based upon his past work is probably pretty good, so I need to find it. 

The coming difficulty with Ukraine/Russia is well-described by US military professionals:  You reach a point in a pending conflict (while the preps and arms shipments are still in motion) that momentum begins to drive policy.

And that’s the point of this note this morning – to become acutely aware of the passing of the tipping point this fall where momentum in the EU and Kremlin will begin to run ahead of policy and common sense.  We’re almost there.

If it does, radiation from Fukushima will be the least of our worries,  An

If through some miracle the momentum is insufficient to light up World War III/IV, would it be asking too much of the  Changer in Chief to clean house at the State Department and come up with a policy team that doesn’t consistently lay the seeds of “next conflict” every couple of years?

You see, the major problem in the world today is economic rather than political in nature.

The European Union is a fiscal disaster and they’ve gotten stuck in “expand or implode” mode.  So, too, the US is in the same pickle. 

Absent the political will to attack the real sources of the world’s ills (like the offshore bankers that make untold billions on illicit arms sales (US and Russia compete head on in this arena, but let’s not forget how the bankster class facilitate tax avoidance for the elite/rich and corporations as well…), we’ll continue to reap the bitter harvest of agenda-driven half-think.

The only good I can see coming of it is a never-ending stream of lies from all parties (about wars, enemies, climate change, yada, yada) that will give the internet bleacher crowd a virtually unending stream of fodder well into the infinite future.

Disconventional Language

Got me!

Several readers (more awake than I was yesterday at 2:30 AM Pacific) clubbed me on using the word mute instead of moot.  Reader Marc down in Florida, for example:

You started today with 

“I’m not sure who will take down America:  Jihadists, hackers, Vlad Putin, or corporations.  But, one thing is certain:  The question is far from mute.”

Dollars to donuts, I bet you meant the last word to be “moot”!  Google gives 2 hits on “question is far from mute” but 357 on “question is far from moot”.

As usual, I’m enjoying your writing.  At the least it saves me time from scouring the corners of the ‘net for news that might actually affect my life.

Yes, I know the difference between “moot” (as in irrelevant) and “mute” (as in silent).  Alas, I meant silent as much as irrelevant.

Did I mention I have run out of coffee and will be picking some up today?  Absent the liquid jumper-cables, I confess that mute made sense up until the first of a dozen emails arrived.

When I finally get a fresh batch of coffee, I’m sure I’ll awakened enough to be concerned about my reputation for getting exactly the write word.

To answer Marc’s email subject line question (“…been using a dictation program again??) the answer is know, lol.

Prepping:  Adventure Recovery Dept.

14-hours of rest and two bowls of spaghetti were needed to recover from our Sunday state park outing up here in Rain Land.  If you missed the weekend column  (congratulations, I didn’t), I suggested that if you’re any kind of prepper at all, you should try living a day or two out of your car with no further prepping other than hitting a state park.

Naturally, one of our readers (who missed the fine print about don’t try this at home) did just that…

Hey George, took my 5 year old son camping for a day up to Rampant Reservoir here in CO to show him the great outdoors and to hone in a few prepper skills. First off I forgot a lighter/matches, O well I’ll just use my fire starter. Didn’t work too well. I then remembered I packed some matches in my emergency whistle in my get home bag. Useless because they were the small kitchen type and I had no way to strike them. Now I’m getting a little frustrated. I then remembered I purchased strike anywhere matches and packed them in the bag as well. Long story short got the water boiling and my son and I sat down to a nice late lunch of freeze dried cheesy lasagna and chicken Alfredo. BTW, 5 year olds are not very good fishermen.


In a pinch, I’ve found that the fire steel works best with about a eighth of a teaspoon of fresh gasoline poured on a diesel-soaked rag, set under a pile of very dry pine needles, 25 pounds of pine cones, which in turn sits under a cord of dry split wood.  On top of that I place a single  10-ton dump truck of anthracite that’s been wetted down with bunker C crude or light asphalt.  If it’s windy, I’ll add 50-100 used tires and a 55-gallon drum of used motor oil.  Blow gently with 3-4 leaf blowers for the first 10-minutes.

This method works well, but if you try it, be certain to pack 500 grams of triamcinolone ointment for the flash burns and a Scott AirPak for wind changes.  You should be able to roast marshmallows in about a week.

A call to the FAA may also be a good idea if your camp fire is 10-miles (oir less) upwind of an airport, so arriving air traffic can be advised of possible IFR conditions on landing due to smoke in the vicinity.

More tomorrow when the meds kick in….I may be able to introduce you to my dealer, Mrs. Olson.  She works for the Arabica Cartel.

Write when you break-even, or simply break…