tsuomela + gloom-and-doom   76

Jim Quinn: Lies Across America « naked capitalism
Americans are so committed to their automobiles, hyper-consumerism, oversized McMansions, and suburban sprawl existence that they will never willingly prepare in advance for a future by scaling back, downsizing, or thinking. Our culture is built upon consumption, debt, cheap oil and illusion. Kevin Phillips in American Theocracy concludes that there are so many Americans tied to our unsustainable economic model that they will choose to lie to themselves and be lied to by their leaders rather than think and adapt:

A large number of voters work in or depend on the energy and automobile industries, and still more are invested in them, not just financially but emotionally and culturally....In the United States more than elsewhere, a preference for conspicuous consumption over energy efficiency and conservation is a signal of a much deeper, central divide.
future  gloom-and-doom  decline  america  economics  debt 
december 2010 by tsuomela
From WikiChina - NYTimes.com
There is a willful self-destructiveness in the air here as if America has all the time and money in the world for petty politics.
china  politics  gloom-and-doom  trivial  self-destruction  exceptionalism  american 
december 2010 by tsuomela
“Money and the Midterms: Are the Parties Over? Interview with Thomas Ferguson” « naked capitalism
Lynn Parramore: So is American politics fated to be all doom and gloom?

Thomas Ferguson: If you want a happy ending, you probably shouldn’t follow our system too closely in the next few years. Instead, go see a Disney movie, unless perhaps Tim Burton is making it. Bloomberg, Brown, or Hillary Clinton, though, are all known quantities. But the experience of the Great Depression was that as things failed to improve the swamp creatures got their chance. And when the economic situation shook out, the geopolitics became more sinister. It would be a rash person indeed who counted on a happy ending to this mess.
politics  economics  election  2010  america  crisis  campaign  money  gloom-and-doom 
november 2010 by tsuomela
WHO | Antimicrobial resistance: revisiting the “tragedy of the commons”
Q: Is this the doomsday scenario of a world without antibiotics?

A: Unfortunately yes, with these new multiresistant NDM1-containing strains and their potential for worldwide spread. Doctors will face a terrible dilemma when a pregnant woman develops a kidney infection that spills over into the bloodstream with a pan-resistant strain containing NDM1 and there are no treatment options. We are essentially back to an era with no antibiotics...
Q: What can World Health Day 2011 achieve in terms of containing antimicrobial resistance?

A: A focus such as this is an unparalleled opportunity for WHO to step to the fore and to bring together its personnel working in this area – those working on rational drug use, surveillance networks, laboratories, the World Health Day team, the infection prevention and control team and others – to create a cross-organizational taskforce to update and rejuvenate the excellent work produced a decade ago...
health  immunization  immunology  antibiotics  environment  medicine  future  gloom-and-doom 
november 2010 by tsuomela
s a consequence, the term "middle class" was drained of all economic meaning, and came to signify simply "respectable, proper, decent -- NOT BLACK." As a consequence, in the midst of an economic crisis that has already destroyed the economic security of tens of millions of Americans, those who are themselves being worst hit insist on self-identifying themselves as "middle class."...
We are becoming a Banana Republic, with a tiny, obscenely rich upper class, a smaller and smaller professional middle class, a large working class, and a larger and larger mass of those left out of the economic all together. Because of the globalization of production, even in the service industries, there are now tens of millions of Americans who are, in effect, surplus population. They are not needed by capital, not even as a "surplus population of the unemployed" holding down by their existence wages for those employed.
politics  america  race  class  economics  gloom-and-doom  banana-republic 
november 2010 by tsuomela
2010 Midterm Elections: Here Comes A Lost Generation | The New Republic
The United States does not have a parliamentary system. It has been characterized by long-term political realignments in which one party had been dominant for a decade or more. But the latest realignments have not come to pass. In 2001, Karl Rove believed that George W. Bush had created a new McKinley majority that would endure for decades; and when Obama was elected, many Democrats, including me, thought that he had a chance to create a Roosevelt-like Democratic majority. But instead, like Japan, we’ve had a succession of false dawns, or what Walter Dean Burnham once called an “unstable equilibrium.” That’s not good for party loyalists, but it’s also not good for the country. America needs bold and consistent leadership to get us out of the impasse we are in, but if this election says anything, it’s that we’re not going to get it over the next two or maybe even ten years.
politcal-science  politics  trend  moderation  power  realignment  election  future  lost-decade  gloom-and-doom  reform  failure 
november 2010 by tsuomela
Science stunner: Vast East Siberian Arctic Shelf methane stores destabilizing and venting « Climate Progress
Methane release from the not-so-perma-frost is the most dangerous amplifying feedback in the entire carbon cycle. Research published in Friday’s journal Science finds a key “lid” on “the large sub-sea permafrost carbon reservoir” near Eastern Siberia “is clearly perforated, and sedimentary CH4 [methane] is escaping to the atmosphere.”
science  global-warming  gloom-and-doom  climate  research  arctic  methane  oceanography  oceans 
march 2010 by tsuomela
FT.com / Comment / Opinion - Mother of all carry trades faces an inevitable bust
This unraveling may not occur for a while, as easy money and excessive global liquidity can push asset prices higher for a while. But the longer and bigger the carry trades and the larger the asset bubble, the bigger will be the ensuing asset bubble crash. The Fed and other policymakers seem unaware of the monster bubble they are creating. The longer they remain blind, the harder the markets will fall.
econometrics  banking  gloom-and-doom  bubble  international  trade  monetary-policy 
november 2009 by tsuomela
FT.com / Markets / Insight - Rally fuelled by cheap money brings a sense of foreboding
In the meantime, it is crystal clear that the longer that money remains ultra cheap, the more traders will have an incentive to gamble (particularly if they privately suspect that today’s boom will be short-lived and want to score big over the next year). Somehow all this feels horribly familiar; I just hope that my sense of foreboding turns out to be wrong.
economics  banking  recession  crisis  gloom-and-doom 
october 2009 by tsuomela
Cost Cuts Lift Profits but Hinder Economy - WSJ.com
In an ominous sign for the economy, much of the profit is being eked out through cost cuts. Executives say they are hesitant to reinvest such profits into their businesses.
economics  gloom-and-doom  spending  business  recession  employment 
october 2009 by tsuomela
Is There Any Point in Fighting to Stave off Industrial Apocalypse? | CommonDreams.org
The collapse of civilisation will bring us a saner world, says Paul Kingsnorth. No, counters George Monbiot – we can't let billions perish
future  collapse  civilization  technology  gloom-and-doom  end-times  via:pollard 
august 2009 by tsuomela
The Dark Mountain Project
Welcome to the Dark Mountain Project: a new literary movement for an age of global disruption. We aim to question the stories that underpin our failing civilisation, to craft new ones for the age ahead and to write clearly and honestly about our true place in the world.
art  future  community  literature  civilization  collapse  collaboration  technology  activism  gloom-and-doom  end-times  via:pollard 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Joe Bageant: The Entertainment Value of Snuffing Grandma
Consequently, they are incapable of asking themselves a simple question: If insurance corporation profits are one third of the cost of healthcare, and all insurance corporations do is deliver our money to healthcare providers for us (or actually, do everything in their power to keep the money for themselves), why do we need insurance companies at all? Answer: Because Wall Street gets a big piece of the action.
rant  health-care  gloom-and-doom  reform  illusion  american  class  wall-street 
august 2009 by tsuomela
How Long Does Experience Keep a Dear School, Anyway? § Unqualified Offerings
I’ve become a pessimist. I think our future is Argentinian: a nation’s elites can have very nice lives for themselves if the commonality is financially secure and healthy, but history shows that a nation’s elites can have very nice lives for themselves even if most people live crabbed, fretful existences. You just need more security guards or, if necessary, paramilitaries.
gloom-and-doom  pessimism  about(BarackObama)  america  future  politics  elites  regulatory-capture  rent  class 
august 2009 by tsuomela
The Fog of Numbers - Clusterfuck Nation
The number problems we face are now hopeless. America will never be able to cover its current outstanding debt. We're effectively finished at all three levels: household, corporate, and government.
gloom-and-doom  economics  number  numeracy  environment  america 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Ah, Wall Street. Seeing the real you at last. » New Deal 2.0
Financial innovation was presented to us in a way that suggested that great things were happening for mankind. The presentations were usually vague. To understand them, we had only the power of our own imaginations, or perhaps, failing that, our awe in the face of this powerful expertise, confidently propelling us to a greater future....

Malarky. This is all code for defer to the wishes of those who make money from these techniques.
finance  financial-engineering  financial-services  banking  money  mythology  religion  capitalism  innovation  gloom-and-doom  regulation 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Douglas Rushkoff » Life Inc: Introduction
, but people of all social classes making choices that go against their better judgment because they believe it’s really the only sensible way to act under the circumstances. It’s as if the world itself were tilted, pushing us toward self- interested, short- term decisions, made more in the manner of corporate share-holders than members of a society. The more decisions we make in
this way, the more we contribute to the very conditions leading to this awfully sloped landscape. In a dehumanizing and self-denying cycle, we make too many choices that—all things being equal—we’d prefer not to make.
corporatism  gloom-and-doom  capitalism  ideology 
may 2009 by tsuomela
Information Arbitrage: The US Government: Over-engineering for Under-performance
And recent bank earnings are only one shining example of why we are now locked into a painful, protracted process of false hope, failure and rebirth, when we could have chosen quick, deep pain, and transitioned to real hope and rebirth in a much shorter time-frame. But the US Government does not believe the US citizen can withstand such pain
economics  crisis  bailout  government  failure  gloom-and-doom  politics 
april 2009 by tsuomela
Jeffrey Sachs: The Geithner-Summers Plan is Even Worse Than We Thought
Two weeks ago, I posted an article showing how the Geithner-Summers banking plan could potentially and unnecessarily transfer hundreds of billions of dollars of wealth from taxpayers to banks... Insiders can easily game the system created by Geithner and Summers to cost up to a trillion dollars or more to the taxpayers.
economics  banking  bailout  regulatory-capture  insider  gaming-the-system  gloom-and-doom 
april 2009 by tsuomela
The world economy is tracking or doing worse than during the Great Depression | vox - Research-based policy analysis and commentary from leading economists
Often cited comparisons – which look only at the US – find that today’s crisis is milder than the Great Depression. In this column, two leading economic historians show that the world economy is now plummeting in a Great-Depression-like manner. Indeed, world industrial production, trade, and stock markets are diving faster now than during 1929-30. Fortunately, the policy response to date is much better.
depression  economics  crisis  world  scale  perspective  gloom-and-doom 
april 2009 by tsuomela
AIG: Before CDS, There Was Reinsurance | The Big Picture
Some inflammatory suggestions about fraudulent use of "side letters" in the re-insurance industry. Where there's a will to bend the rules there is a way to make money.
accounting  aig  bailout  cds  fraud  business  insurance  banking  financial-engineering  gloom-and-doom  wheels-within-wheels  rotten-to-the-core 
april 2009 by tsuomela
Space storm alert: 90 seconds from catastrophe - space - 23 March 2009 - New Scientist
The most serious space weather event in history happened in 1859. It is known as the Carrington event, after the British amateur astronomer Richard Carrington, who was the first to note its cause: "two patches of intensely bright and white light" emanating from a large group of sunspots. The Carrington event comprised eight days of severe space weather.
astronomy  solar  catastrophe  coronal-mass-ejection  black-swan  gloom-and-doom  electricity  electric-grid  risk  space-weather 
march 2009 by tsuomela
Open Left:: In Which I Come Out As A Conservative
Right now, the Obama Administration seems to be devoting its rhetorical resources to countering Republican critiques, rather than attacking the whole mindset, and explaining why it has created both false and unreasonable expectations, which cannot be a guide to judging the pace and nature of recovery. In short, it is doing nothing to prepare the American people for the likely severity and difficulty of what lies ahead.
economics  bailout  gloom-and-doom 
march 2009 by tsuomela
They’re at it again.
The doom-cryers who assert we don’t read any more—or, if we do, it’s not the right kind of reading, not the literary reading we all used to do every single day back in the Golden Age of universal literacy.
reading  survey  culture  gloom-and-doom  declension-narrative  decline  literacy 
march 2009 by tsuomela
Economic upturn in two months: Expert-India Business-Business-The Times of India
During this season of gloom, when experts say the economy will not look up till at least 2010, Eliyahu M Goldratt begs to differ.
economics  crisis  2009  prediction  gloom-and-doom 
march 2009 by tsuomela
We're on the brink of disaster | Salon
Indeed, if you want to be grimly impressed, hang a world map on your wall and start inserting red pins where violent episodes have already occurred. Athens (Greece), Longnan (China), Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Riga (Latvia), Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sofia (Bulgaria), Vilnius (Lithuania) and Vladivostok (Russia) would be a start. Many other cities from Reykjavik, Paris, Rome and Zaragoza to Moscow and Dublin have witnessed huge protests over rising unemployment and falling wages that remained orderly thanks in part to the presence of vast numbers of riot police.
economics  crisis  politics  protests  violence  unrest  war  future  international  foreign-policy  gloom-and-doom 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Economists are the forgotten guilty men | Anatole Kaletsky - Times Online
"On those two dubious adjectives “rational” and “efficient” an enormous theoretical superstructure of models, regulatory prescriptions and computer simulations was built. And without this intellectual framework, the bankers and politicians would never have built the towers of bad debt and bad policy that have come crashing down."
economics  academic  theory  gloom-and-doom  you-need-a-good-scolding  commentary  rant  failure  regulation  government 
february 2009 by tsuomela
FT.com / UK - The inside story on reforms is that there is no story
"I've been calling around to get a sense of the progress being made on structural reforms of the US securities markets. The answer is: very little, if any. The inside information I can whisper to you is that the inside has no information."
gloom-and-doom  finance  regulation  regulatory-capture  government  failure 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Clusterfuck Nation by Jim Kunstler : Poverty of Imagination
The attempted re-start of revolving debt consumerism is an exercise in futility.
future  debt  environment  gloom-and-doom 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Stumbling and Mumbling: Bonuses, power and inequality
why have banks paid [giant bonuses] for so long?
The popular answer is that banks need to attract the best talent. Yeah, right..... Traders must be bribed not to plunder the firm. If you don’t pay them millions, they’ll sell the banks’ assets cheaply to rival firms for which they then go and work. They are paid fortunes not because they have skill, but because they have power.
economics  ceo  executives  principal-agent  money  pay  corruption  gloom-and-doom  power  bonus 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Seed: 2009 Will Be a Year of Panic
So 2009 will be a squalid year, a planetary hostage situation surpassing any mere financial crisis, where the invisible hand of the market, a good servant turned a homicidal master, periodically wanders through a miserable set of hand-tied, blindfolded, feebly struggling institutions, corporations, bureaucracies, professions, and academies, and briskly blows one's brains out for no sane reason.
2009  predictions  crisis  gloom-and-doom  by(BruceSterling)  economics 
february 2009 by tsuomela
naked capitalism: The Bad Bank Assets Proposal: Even Worse Than You Imagined
"Dear God, let's just kiss the US economy goodbye. It may take a few years before the loyalists and permabulls throw in the towel, but the handwriting is on the wall.

The Obama Administration, if the Washington Post's latest report is accurate, is about to embark on a hugely expensive "save the banking industry at all costs" experiment"
economics  crisis  bailout  banking  finance  financial-services  obama  government  gloom-and-doom 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Graduate School in the Humanities: Just Don't Go - Chronicle.com
Yet another in the long line of advice columns against graduate school. If it is so bad why don't these people leave academia?
graduate-school  gloom-and-doom 
january 2009 by tsuomela
Op-Ed Columnist - The Madoff Economy - NYTimes.com
Think of the way almost everyone important missed the warning signs of an impending crisis. How was that possible? How, for example, could Alan Greenspan have declared, just a few years ago, that “the financial system as a whole has become more resilient” — thanks to derivatives, no less? The answer, I believe, is that there’s an innate tendency on the part of even the elite to idolize men who are making a lot of money, and assume that they know what they’re doing.
crisis  2008  economics  elites  mistakes  bias  capitalism  gloom-and-doom  fraud  financial-services 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Clusterfuck Nation by Jim Kunstler : Change You Won't Believe
The crucial element in the transformation underway will be emotion. The American experience for a few generations has produced an adult population with very childish instincts, increasingly worse each decade.
gloom-and-doom  future  economics  crisis  long-emergency  people-jameskunstler  work  labor  capitalism  peak-oil 
december 2008 by tsuomela
George Monbiot asks Fatih Birol, chief economist of IEA, when will the oil run out? | Business | The Guardian
"In terms of non-Opec [countries outside the big oil producers' cartel]," he replied, "we are expecting that in three, four years' time the production of conventional oil will come to a plateau, and start to decline. In terms of the global picture, assuming that Opec will invest in a timely manner, global conventional oil can still continue, but we still expect that it will come around 2020 to a plateau as well, which is, of course, not good news from a global-oil-supply point of view."
energy  peak-oil  environment  electricity  policy  politics  gloom-and-doom 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Economist's View: Fed Watch: What If the Analogy is Wrong?
the coming massive US policy response is a desperate attempt to maintain a global economic structure that is fundamentally broken. This is a story I have long championed, but, in recent months, one I was willing to discount given my expectations of an improvement in the current account. Indeed, this seemed consistent with the strengthening of the Dollar. But recent trade data suggests I may have become too complacent with regards to the external dynamic.
economics  trade  world  crisis  gloom-and-doom 
december 2008 by tsuomela
The short term problem | The Agonist
Thus, this crisis will not be pretty, but the powers that be have learned nothing from it. Their response will be to overheat the old economy. Drill! Dig! Burn! will be the order of the day. Build coal plants! Drill for Gas! Drill! Drill! Note that they say drill, and not extract. Drilling holes in the ground, by itself, is not a meritorious activity. There needs to be something down there to drill for.
economics  crisis  future  gloom-and-doom 
october 2008 by tsuomela
FT.com | Willem Buiter’s Maverecon | A Special Resolution Regime for banks must put tax payers before shareholders and bank creditors
It’s reasonable to assume that the banking system in the North Atlantic region is insolvent and would be bankrupt but for the reality of recent government bailouts and the expectation of future government bailouts. Certainly, for the system as a whole, the marked-to-market value of its assets is way below that of its liabilities. I strongly suspect that even the hold-to-maturity value of its assets is well below that of its liabilities. Although the system as a whole is broke, there are no doubt individual banks that are solvent. We may not, however be certain as to which banks are solvent and which banks are not.
economics  bailout  banking  financial-services  2008  gloom-and-doom 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Boom goes the CDS | Free exchange | Economist.com
Fact one—there are several dozen trillion dollars of these things out there—an amount that makes Paulson’s $700 billion look like a rounding error.

Fact two—they are basically insurance policies on bond defaults that are written without regulation, so the usual insurance-industry practice of setting aside reserves does not apply. Oh, and while the premia enter as bank income the pay-out obligations are not on their balance sheets.

Fact three—the large banks think they are hedged since they have "insurance policies" on both sides of the default events. Hedged? In normal times, perhaps. But imagine if one big issuer of these insurance policies went broke at roughly the same time that one of the insured bonds went bad—say, for instance, Ford bonds and a major Wall Street bank headquartered in Europe.
cds  failure  gloom-and-doom  financial-engineering  market-failure 
october 2008 by tsuomela
A Look At Wall Street's Shadow Market, 60 Minutes: How Some Arcane Wall Street Financial Instruments Magnified Economic Crisis - CBS News
"You got Wall Street firms, Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers. You got insurance companies like AIG. Merrill lost a ton of money on this," Kroft says. "Everybody's lost a ton of money. They're supposed to be the smartest investors in the world. And they did it themselves."

"They did it all on their own," Partnoy agrees. "That's the most incredible thing about this crisis is that they pushed the button themselves. They blew themselves up."
cds  financial-engineering  gloom-and-doom  economics  market-failure  crisis 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Yale School of Management
In response to growing concerns on the spread of the financial crisis, the Yale School of Management, in partnership with the Wall Street Journal and CNBC, organized a roundtable discussion in New York on September 23 that brought together business leaders and scholars from Yale, Wharton, NYU, and the Columbia and Harvard business schools to discuss the unfolding situation in the markets and the economy more broadly, as well as the proposed Treasury Department bail-out plan currently being discussed in Congress.
business  gloom-and-doom  bailout  crisis  yale  conference 
september 2008 by tsuomela
Once Upon a Time...: The Vampire, Struck by Sunlight
Two: You, the "ordinary" American, are the one who finally pays for all of this. You are the ultimate sucker.

My only criticism of Whitney's latest article is that he buries the most critical sentence in the middle of a longer explanation:

Keep in mind, the biggest source of American power is its access to cheap capital via the US taxpayer.
gloom-and-doom  crisis  bailout  economics 
september 2008 by tsuomela
Angry Bear: Can we please broaden our thinking in this crisis?
Well, it's gotten misshapen because the financial side of the economy is dominating the productive side of the economy...We've become a financial economy which has overwhelmed the productive economy to the detriment of investors and the detriment ultimately of our society.
financial-services  market-failure  gloom-and-doom  economics  future  crisis  bailout 
september 2008 by tsuomela
Print Your Own Money - Boing Boing
The only way for banks - who run such an economy - to make more money is to lend more out. So they looked for more borrowers, as well as more places to park their cash. As a result, the things you and I depend on in the real world became investment vehicles. Homes, oil, resources...you name it. So the costs of all these things went up not because of any real laws of supply and demand, but because they had become new classes of investment.
economics  gloom-and-doom  localism  money  currency  alternative 
september 2008 by tsuomela
A National Commonwealth | The Agonist
The pieces of a new constitutional order are in place: that the secret is for the developed world to bail out the developed world, rather than going to the holders of petrodollars. By swapping paper, this interconnectedness is being created out of necessity. However, it is equally essential that old claims be wiped out
politics  america  gloom-and-doom  constitution  future  commonwealth 
september 2008 by tsuomela
The Crisis of an Illegitimate Political Order | The Agonist
In the short term we are going to see the continued entanglement, where ordinary citizens and consumers will have the failed risk offloaded on to them, because, in the end, all things must be paid either in the lose of autonomy of elites, or in the loss of standard of living of consumers. Since consumers have voted, repeatedly, to avoid any significant restraint on the autonomy of elites, it will, necessarily, have to come out of their own standard of living.
economics  politics  gloom-and-doom  fire-and-brimstone 
september 2008 by tsuomela
Joseph Stiglitz: The financial crisis is the fruit of dishonesty on the part of financial institutions | Comment is free | The Guardian
Financial markets hinge on trust, and that trust has eroded. Lehman's collapse marks at the very least a powerful symbol of a new low in confidence, and the reverberations will continue.

The crisis in trust extends beyond banks. In the global context, there is dwindling confidence in US policymakers. At July's G8 meeting in Hokkaido the US delivered assurances that things were turning around at last. The weeks since have done nothing but confirm any global mistrust of government experts.
economics  market-failure  trust  gloom-and-doom  financial-services  markets 
september 2008 by tsuomela
Robert Reich's Blog: Why Wall Street is Melting Down, and What to Do About It
Ironically, a free-market-loving Republican administration is presiding over the most ambitious intrusion of government into the market in almost anyone's memory. But to what end? Bailouts, subsidies, and government insurance won't help Wall Street because the Street's fundamental problem isn't lack of capital. It's lack of trust.
economics  market-failure  gloom-and-doom  trust  america  financial-services 
september 2008 by tsuomela
The Bell Tolls For Us - II | The Agonist
Thus, the poor must now pay. And pay you will. Not just today, not just tomorrow, but for the rest of your life. This is the one thing that neo-classical synthesis economics prescribes, if money cannot bail the problem out, then the problem is that the poor have too much money, and must be shorn of the ability to spend, until they can spend within the frame work of equilibrium growth. Neo-classical economics solves mesoïnflationary pressures, then, by forcing the people out of the world of prosperity. Reagan did so by forcing much of urban American into a half generation of poverty. Now, it will happen again, as the most anti-urban democrat since Al Davis, is poised to be nominated.

.. what is emergent is rental plutocracy. Capitalism is not the natural state of an economy, instead, small elites controlling rental resources is the natural state. Food, violence, land, energy are the historical rents, with money being used as a lever for all of them.
economics  politics  future  gloom-and-doom 
august 2008 by tsuomela
The Critics Need a Reboot. The Internet Hasn't Led Us Into a New Dark Age.
When in doubt, blame the latest technology. Socrates thought the advent of writing would wreak havoc on the powers of the mind. Christian theologians denounced the printing press as the work of the devil. The invention of the telephone was supposed to make letter-writing extinct, and the arrival of the train — and later the car and plane — was going to be the death of community.

Now comes a technological bogeyman for the 21st century, this one responsible for a supposed sharp uptick in American shallowness and credulity: the Internet and its digital spawn.
internet  culture  technology  technology-effects  moral-panic  gloom-and-doom 
august 2008 by tsuomela
CEPR - The Housing Crash and the Retirement Prospects of Late Baby Boomers
The projections show that the vast majority of families in these age cohorts will have little or no wealth by 2009 in any of these scenarios and that the cohorts just approaching retirement will have very little to support themselves in retirement other t
housing  generational-analysis  economics  aging  baby-boomers  gloom-and-doom  wealth 
july 2008 by tsuomela
Upsetting the oil drum | The Agonist
That the treasury has been looted, and while the Saudis will lend us a great deal of money to consume, they will lend us far less to get off of our oil addiction. This is the rightward slant of the last 40 years: there is plenty of money for consumption,
economics  politics  future  fire-and-brimstone  gloom-and-doom 
june 2008 by tsuomela

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