46 thoughts on “Bang or Whimper Time”

  1. We are the hollow men
        We are the stuffed men
        Leaning together
        Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
        Our dried voices, when
        We whisper together
        Are quiet and meaningless
        As wind in dry grass
        Or rats’ feet over broken glass
        In our dry cellar
        Shape without form, shade without colour,
        Paralysed force, gesture without motion;


    This is the way the world ends
        This is the way the world ends
        This is the way the world ends
        Not with a bang but a whimper.


    [the hollow men by t.s. eliot]

  2. wapo:

    Two former GOP treasury secretaries held private discussions this month with Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) hoping to resolve an impasse over the debt limit that now threatens the global economy, according to four people aware of the conversations.
    The previously unreported talks involving the GOP economic grandees — Henry Paulson, who served as treasury secretary under President George W. Bush; and Steven Mnuchin, treasury secretary under President Donald Trump — did not resolve the matter, and the United States is now racing toward a massive fiscal cliff with no clear resolution at hand.
    Paulson and Mnuchin have in recent weeks spoken with both McConnell and Yellen as the Biden administration tries to ensure the country does not default on its debt obligations and spark a global financial crisis.
    The backchanneling by Mnuchin and Paulson — who had previously worked together at Goldman Sachs — reflects the widespread alarm among economists and U.S. business interests about the consequences of an unprecedented default on the federal debt. If the United States was unable to borrow money to pay all of its bills, a number of economists have predicted that it would lead to a calamity that could trigger a meltdown in financial markets and plunge the economy into recession. Republicans have refused to help Democrats approve a new debt ceiling suspension despite approving three such measures during the Trump administration, under which the national debt rose by roughly $8 trillion.

  3. Editorial: Politically bankrupt: Senate Republicans are happy for the US to default on its debt (msn.com)

    Journey with us, if you will, all the way back to August 2019. In a budget deal passed by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump, Washington suspended the U.S. debt limit for two years — two years in which Republicans refrained from pitching a fit every time the U.S. needed to borrow more money.
    It is therefore the purest form of chutzpah for Sen. Mitch McConnell and other Republicans who facilitated Trump’s reckless record to now lay down in the middle of the tracks and refuse to raise the government’s debt limit as a fiscal freight train barrels toward us, toying with America’s full faith and credit.“We will not support legislation that raises the debt limit,” quoth the Republican Senate leader, who hails from a state that benefits hugely from federal largesse. He and his fellow partisans have the gall to claim it is the social spending of Joe Biden and other Democrats that fueled the red-ink rise. In fact, 97% of the nation’s current debt was accrued before Biden took office.
    We wish we could say Republicans are treating Americans like fools, that the vast majority will see through their gaslighting. The sad truth is, the debt and deficit remain a potent political weapon with a critical mass of voters who rage against the Washington machine. So, each and every time Republicans are out of the White House, they wield the weapon like warriors, before proceeding to fall on their swords whenever one of their own is in power.
    So predictable, so poisonous.

  4. as if there’s nothing else to worry about

    like 2000 americans dying every day from covid?

    like devastating fires, floods and famine due to climate change? 

    not to mention those little worries of domestic terrorism et al…


    otherwise, have a nice day, mixers  

    Image result for cartoon happy face

  5. Something else for the list –
    U.S. projections on drought-hit Colorado River grow more dire
    Lake Powell and Lake Mead have both dipped to historic lows, with a combined capacity of 39% on Wednesday, down from 49% at this time last year.
    The agency’s projections show there’s a 90% chance Lake Powell will hit a level where Glen Canyon Dam that holds it back couldn’t produce power as early as July 2022 if the region has another dry winter.

  6. This was so predictable. We’ve seen it before and the Last failure to fund the government over the dispute between Congress and T___p over funding for his wall and allow the debt ceiling to rise was hung around his neck by the voters, taking his approval number to its lowest level and disapproval level to its highest and he relented and signed the funding bill and suspended the debt ceiling if I remember correctly. BB could comment with more insight than I.  The Treasury Department notes that Congress has raised or suspended the debt ceiling 78 times since 1960 to allow the US to avoid defaulting on its obligations. This time the Republicans (along with Manchin and Sinema) are sticking their necks out to have the blame hung on them. We’ll see how it turns out. 

  7. GOP plan to block House measure could trigger an unprecedented $28tn default | US politics | The Guardian


    Democrats could still move to advance a ‘clean’ stopgap funding bill devoid of language to suspend the debt limit, which Republicans have privately suggested they would not filibuster, and take action on the debt limit in a subsequent standalone bill.

    But even though such a measure would avert the immediate calamity of a government shutdown on 1 October, it would still leave Congress with no path to lift the debt limit after Republican senator Ted Cruz confirmed he would block a standalone bill.

    Justin Goodman, a spokesperson for Schumer, criticized McConnell for refusing to join Democrats for what has in years past been regarded as a routine step that allows the US treasury to meet its debt obligations.

    “Every American will know that Senate Republicans are to blame,” Goodman said.

  8. even though the congress critter comedians can’t unify the late night ones can and have

    Late Night Hosts Unite to Spotlight Climate Change – The Hollywood Reporter

    Climate change took the spotlight across late night on Wednesday.

    Stephen ColbertSamantha BeeJames CordenJimmy FallonJimmy KimmelSeth Meyers and Trevor Noah united across networks for “Climate Night,” focusing their programming on one of the most pressing global issues today. Despite the serious subject matter, this is late night — and as such, there were jokes.

    “I don’t want to die,” said Kimmel in a statement ahead of the event.
    “In the interest of recycling, please use whatever Jimmy Kimmel said,” Fallon quipped.
    “I’m thrilled to participate in Climate Night,” Bee shared. “But maybe we should move it up a few days? Just because, you know, it’s urgent?”
    “I’m proud to dedicate one entire night of my show to the climate, so I can say I wasn’t part of the problem, I was 1/365th of the solution,” said Colbert.
    Several climate change activists and prominent voices on the issue appeared as guests across late night, from Dr. Jane Goodall on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Bill Gates on The Late Late Show with James Corden to Prof. Katharine Hayhoe, professor of political science at Texas Tech University, on Jimmy Kimmel Live! 


  9. trevor’s contribution for the project last night

    We’re all familiar with the major effects of climate change, but a hotter earth creates lots of smaller changes too: more female turtles, worse-tasting coffee, scary space junk, and even less sex. #DailyShow #TrevorNoah #ClimateChange

  10. How much are we saving by not being in Afghanistan?  How much would Republicans be happy to spend on another/more war? No mo yes to feed, house, or, educate the people, though.

  11. https://www.vice.com/en/article/z3x8bw/joe-manchin-senator-millions-coal-grant-town-west-virginia

    “According to his most recent financial disclosure, Manchin gained $492,000 last year due to his non-public shares in a coal company called Enersystems, which records show is a contractor for a power plant in the state’s north that burns waste coal. “


    “Joe Manchin, though, made half a million dollars last year off his son’s coal company, meaning that coal paid him roughly three times the $174,000 salary he made last year as a public servant. “

    “Manchin has earned more than $4.5 million from Enersystems Inc. and Farmington Resources Inc., two coal industry companies he founded in the 1980s. That’s not to say Manchin isn’t also bloated with a jumbled mess of microwaved ideology about fiscal responsibility and compromise. He probably likes all the attention he’s getting, too. “

  12. Pogo…  the last time we heard from Flatus he told us his eyesight was going.  I’ve seen KGC pop up on FaceBook a couple times last week.
    Yeah… the repubs are back up to the same old same old…   as KGC would say…  maroons!

  13. RR – Flatus also mentioned another condition with his health around the last time he posted. 

  14. https://www.texastribune.org/2021/09/22/shell-permian-basin-texas/

    “More than 175,000 barrels of oil per day in production will shift from one major company to another.“

    “For Shell, the motivation for the sale was to meet the company’s goals of shrinking its carbon dioxide emissions and increasing its share of renewable energy sources, objectives made legally binding by a Dutch court this summer. “

    Hmmm, so emissions won’t decrease, they’ll just switch whose books on which they’re recorded.

    Republicans will scream about protecting fossil fuel jobs, but would green jobs pay as much or more? Would health and healthcare costs of many be better? Would FEMA relief for climate disasters be mitigated even slightly? Republicans don’t care.

  15. Hillary Clinton tried to warn us — and paid the price. Let’s at least call Republicans what they are
    Still, America’s political class is unwilling to call the fascist, white supremacist Republicans what they are
    During a speech in September 2016, Hillary Clinton — then the Democratic presidential nominee — warned the American people and the world of the dangers represented by Donald Trump and his followers. She described the “volatile political environment” of that moment:

    You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic — you name it. And unfortunately there are people like that. And he has lifted them up. He has given voice to their websites that used to only have 11,000 people, now have 11 million. He tweets and retweets offensive, hateful, mean-spirited rhetoric. Now some of those folks, they are irredeemable, but thankfully they are not America.

  16. Tech billionaire: Facebook is what’s wrong with America

    New York (CNN Business)From the climate crisis to Covid, Marc Benioff sees a common thread for what ails America today: deception that is allowed to spread like wildfire on Facebook.

    “This digital revolution really kind of has the world in its grip. And in that grip, you can see the amount of mistrust and misinformation that is happening,” Benioff told CNN.

    I own Time and I am held accountable for what is produced on my platform…In regards to Facebook, they are not held accountable.”


    The Salesforce CEO and owner of Time Magazine warned these lies tricking social media users are making it harder to solve the biggest problems gripping society.

  17. Biden’s UN speech  has this nugget in it –
    “We can’t send one electron from California to New York”. 
    Entergy Makes $11 Billion A Year But Failed To Protect Louisiana’s Power Grid During Ida — And Why
    It’s time to scrap private  utilities , and build a National Power Grid.  So that wind turbines in Wyoming can send power to Texas.
    R Buckminster Fuller  had this idea –
    We build a giant loop around the top of the world , and connect all the northern power grids to it.  When it’s dark in Russian those plants are feeding the grid in North  America.
    This idea has 2 big pay offs .
    A. We need fewer power plants 
    B. It smooths out the demand curve  in any one place.
    Fuller was a dreamer , but he was right.

  18. Entergy failed to protect Louisiana’s power grid from Hurricane Ida and many residents suffered from it. The same company is also against microgrids, which would make our grid resilient and help us weather through disasters easier and with less suffering. And now,4WWLreports that Entergy Corporation and two of its subsidiaries, Entergy Louisiana and Entergy New Orleans, are accused in a class-action lawsuit of “grossly inadequate maintenance and inspection” of a system that “would not sustain even a hurricane with wind gusts below 100 miles per hour.”

    We saw the same tune with PG&E  in California and fires.
    And ERCOT in Texas last winter.
    Duke in the Carolinas  with their toxic fly ash pits.
    The list goes on , and on. 

  19. More things about  electricity………….
    Ford is increasing its production of the New F-150 all electric pick-up .
    One reason is it’s batteries can run your house  for a week .
    The revolution  in transportation is out running the CEOs at these giant corporations. 
    And like all new babies that threaten greed they are trying to drown it the tub. 
    When NYC was up to it’s thighs  in horse shit , the “safety bicycle” came along .  Just before cars. 
    Now E – Bikes are once again changing the way we get around. 
    Again it was no accident that the Wright Bros. were bike guys. 
    That revolution in the last two decades of the 19th century is one of the great untold stories of America.  It’s fruits spawned so much more . 
    Ford’s 1st car had bike wheels , not wagon wheels .
     This wave of E – Bikes will spawn  God knows what. 
    I am so glad I lived to see it. 

  20. Back in the 80’s I bought a set of plans from this guy , and made one of his bikes. 
    I went on to print stickers for him , and the T-shirts for this bike .  They went 85 mph on it using human legs. 
     They still make bikes .

  21. I went on to think about “hydraulic” bikes .
    Kill the chain drive and the gears . The crank is a  hydraulic pump, the frame is part of the system , the out put motor is the rear drive .
    The brakes are the key to the system , they charge the system every time they are used.  This is all possible by making part of the frame a compressed air tank. 
    The braking stores energy in the bike , so when the light turns green the energy used to stop , drives you forward off the light.
    Down hill braking is not wasted in the form of heat and wear , it is stored to be used to go up hill. 
    I may be many things , but I have never owned a turnip truck. 

  22. I will be back more often but Mr Cracker died on September 1. He had a long and wonderful life.  

  23. Bob, the combo of batteries and bikes (like the combo of batteries and anything and everything) is likely transformational. Cost is the current issue, but ask BiD how many delivery bikes she’s seeing in NYC.  It’s frankly pretty stunning.  And thy are the model Ts of electric bikes.  5 years from now this will be a VERY different conversation.  BW, I love this shit.

  24. KC, please accept my sincerest condolences. Mr. Cracker may not have actively posted, but he was a member of the family.  

  25. Bob, that’s one cool salad system. Is there a nifty watering system for the tubes?  

    Oh, and like you I don’t own no turnip truck. But there are folks who think I came into town on one last night. 
    Love the Tull cut. Ian is a musical genius. And am intrigued by the Telecaster (w/ a strat neck) Clapton played in that Blind Faith vid. I’ve seen that dozens of times but never noticed the FrankenTele until tonight. 

    And before I hit the hay, RIP to Mario Van Peebles. Spike Lee put it well – we lost a giant.

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