The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Open Thread

Use to discuss topics unrelated to recent posts.


China Is Transitioning Economically, And So Far Successfully


Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – October 29, 2023


  1. mago

    While I’m not a fan of processed foods even the organic variety, I still consume them along with the rest of the world.

    Anything from a can or a bag carries a degree of toxicity, which, if consumed over time leads to physical and mental disorders.

    Having said all that as a kind of caveat, I would like to offer a culinary tip, a recipe, tasty even if “toxic”.

    Nori snacks, seasoned or not, are the rage these days, so are readily available.
    We’re all familiar with canned tuna and mayonnaise, no?
    Capers and chili sauce maybe not so much., but probably so.
    Ok. Here goes:

    Scoop one tin of sustainably caught tuna (ha ha, big joke) into a small metal mixing bowl and add a righteous dollop of mayo to taste along with a teaspoon of capers . Mix in a teaspoon or so of chili paste or hot sauce. Minced green onions or shallots and/or chopped parsley are good additions.

    (I get more involved with ingredients than that, but I’m trying to keep it simple.)

    Put a dollop of the tuna salad on a nori square, fold it up and munch it down.

    Ha ha. So that’s my Saturday culinary corner.
    I’m fed up with war, disease and poverty, so thought to dish up something else, so to speak.

    Buen provecho.

  2. mago

    It’s unlikely that most of the readership here has experienced true hunger beyond voluntary fasting or a skipped meal. Me either generally speaking, although I’ve been up against the wall in a foreign country without resources, financial or otherwise and have experienced hunger and desperation.
    Likewise, few here have experienced lack of electricity, water and fuel for cooking. I have for short periods, and it’s excruciating and horrific. And it was just me.
    An entire population numbering in the millions facing such deprivation for weeks is beyond my comprehension.
    Think about it if you can or will.
    And thank the powers that be that you aren’t living it.
    But don’t be too sure. It could happen to you too. Maybe not in this lifetime, but in another.
    Walk a mile in a Gaza shoe.

  3. KT Chong

    So apparently India is gonna change its name to Bharat — because India is the colonial slave name given by its former master, and Bharat is the land’s original name in Sanskrit.

    Apparently over the past few years, the ruling BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) has already renamed many cities and places that were linked to the British and colonial periods. It has recently started to referred the country as Bharat in official documents, in the G20 summit and ASEAN summit.

  4. NR

    Daily Kos is, for the most part, a terrible place these days. I still visit out of morbid curiosity, but today, I was pleasantly surprised to find an actual good diary at the top of their recommended list. It’s about the devastating hurricane that just hit Mexico and the media’s utter, abject failure in covering the climate crisis.

    I have said it before, and I will say it again: the US media is useless and incapable of today’s challenges with the rapidity and fury of the climate emergency. One would think that an unprecedented category-five windstorm that flattened a resort city of one million people on Mexico’s Pacific coast might be mentioned at least below the fold of mainstream media cable and print outlets. In general, it has not.

    Granted, there is a lot of ugly and lethal violence occurring in the Middle East. Here at home, non-stop reporting on the mass murder of people living their lives in Maine. Heck, even Ukraine coverage is relatively quiet. And climate? It is always on the back burner of coverage despite us being at the beginning of the greatest existential crisis life across the planet has ever faced.

    The link if anyone is interested:

  5. bruce wilder

    Bharat was the endonym from independence. Like Turkiye, I suppose asking foreigners to use the endonym in preference to an exonym is an expression of a self-consciously nationalist political movement.

    I wonder, though, what locution is recommended for a national of Bharat. Anyone know?

  6. bruce wilder

    U.S. media has been pretty useless for at least thirty years on any number of important topics and for clear “structural” reasons like being folded into corporate conglomerates and sponsorship by billionaire oligarchs.

    Acapulco may be “explained” by surprise and the devastation of communication, hotels and airports. The Maui fires did not get adequate coverage either, imo.

    What explains the navel-gazing, virtue-signalling uselessness of Daily Kos on the other hand . . . .

  7. Chuck Mire

    Israeli think tank lays out a blueprint for the complete ethnic cleansing of Gaza:

    An Israeli think tank with ties to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a report on October 17 promoting the “unique and rare opportunity” for the “relocation and final settlement of the entire Gaza population.”


    Ancient Precedent in The Old Testament about “The Promised Land”:

    “But of the cities of these people, which the Lord thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth: But thou shalt utterly destroy them; namely, the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee…” (Deuteronomy 20:16-17)

  8. mago

    That Old Testament God. What a guy. Kill every one of those cockroaches, eradicate the mofos with prejudice, every last one of them. Kill kill kill and kill some more.
    Death and destruction, man, I get off on it.

  9. capelin

    A week ago, I hitch-hiked a couple hundred miles (Canada). 35lb pack. Hadn’t done that since society got all rearranged, didn’t know how it would go. It went excellent. Nice, interesting people, great stories.

    Everyone had their own angle, but all agreed; the little/medium person is getting sqeezed, and on porpoise. No one said much on Gaza, but no one rose to Israel’s defence, either.

    My first ride, the arbourist, said how he’d delivered firewood to a guy who had just moved to the country from Ontario. Was unsure as to how to operate his wood furnace. After a bit of back-n-forth, buddy finally said “look, I’ve never struck a match or lighter in my life. I’m from downtown Toronto, why would I?”.

    The Native guy with the out-of-balance tire that smoothed out at speed, popped a “perk”, and said “I gotta get off these, loose access to my kids again. Plus the money, $40/day”. I do the math. “Dude, that’s 12k a year!” “Well, not all the time. Maybe 8k”. Nice guy. Said he’d bring me moosemeat.

    The Euro woman in the rental car was in the process of moving to Canadian country, for the quiet and spruce and dark sky. Hadn’t spent a winter here yet.

    If I’d taken my vehicle, it woulda been a couple hundred bucks of burned fuel. And booring.

    The trip kinda re-affirmed my faith in people. How ancient is hitching a ride? Without a cell phone (gasp).

  10. mago

    @capelin. Cool story bro.
    I wrote a lengthy response but lost internet contact, and it was lost, and I lost impetus to recreate it.
    Thanks for your slice of life.

  11. anon y'mouse

    in light of recent convos here disparaging economist theologians:

    as for the wood furnace, you can replicate that down here with my mother in law. she’s trying to heat her house in the snow zone that has two wood fireplaces with blower type inserts AND a wood furnace via the backup system entirely—toaster coil element electricity. then whining about her electric bills. she keeps trying to give away the wood pile the previous owners left her, because it’s potentially a hiding place for rodents and thus attractant to snakes, of which she is terrified. meanwhile she keeps putting out all kinds of store bought feed for turkeys, deer and whatever animals want to come around, then whining about the other animals that are attracted to this bounty (raccoons, bears, rodents) and trying to convince her neighbor to come shoot these things that belong here more than she does.

    she keeps telling me her home was previously owned by an environmentalist, as if that changes how she uses what he rationally installed. really, the problem is that she’s from California and has only viewed fireplaces as a pretty thing to look at on Christmas eve and otherwise a hassle to clean and a thing that the gov’t gives steady injunctions against using.

    so she partially freezes all winter long and pays hundreds to the electricity corp (naturally privatized).

    i am telling you, this gig as daughter-in-law is not going well. the woman has a PhD thus can’t be made to see sense in anything, and doesn’t believe anyone but her own mind and decisions through egotism reinforced by our society’s process of “meritocracy”. she keeps trying to tell me that those toaster coils are “more efficient” than her wood fireplace that simply has a low wattage fan to distribute heated air for heating her house.

    oh, and she just installed solar panels to help with this electric bill issue, which will help least in the very season she needs to lower her bill most—we get less than two usable hours of sunlight here in wintertime, and throughout the year often not much more due to very overcast skies.

    better in this climate that she had installed some small windmills, and geothermal heat pump to her house. but the money for that has gone now to the solar panels. this is a person who doesn’t even know or realize that her septic tank needs occasional maintenance and inspection, also can’t set up a computer out of the box following quick start instructions, btw and she’s going to “manage” a solar array? it would be hilarious but it’s sadly not when this person is trying to “age in place” and is already a senior with no experience living in a rural place, thinking she is doing the same thing she did in a suburb on the edge of two major metropolitan areas of CA.

    ohwell, can’t talk sense to some people.

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