Written by Joe Katzman   
Thursday, 13 September 2012

Weekly Mind Food aims to show you what TTPers without a regular column, but with deep expertise in key fields, are paying attention to. We call ourselves TTP's Team B. Note the "Weekly Mind Food" category in the left side-bar now, which will have all our issues. They're Free Access, as are all the linked articles, so feel free to read them at your leisure - and to mail the article's URL to your friends!

Paul (internet tech, privacy, economics). Citizen K (hydrocarbon industry), and "devry" (online security, economics, Personal Plan B) are aboard. We also congratulate TTPers agimarc, downeastcraig, edd7, hardcharger, and mrapp for freelance link suggestions that met the test.

This week's Polis includes a very educational Marxist, a Jon Stewart video you've gotta see, and an Oration round-up re: the DNC. Economos looks at Romney's supply-side background, innovation in the economy, and a lot of global energy industry items. Techne Logos looks at security, and also medical advances. The geo-politics section includes a very provocative "Iran strike" scenario, and rumblings in China. Throughout, we do continue to focus on the erosion of basic American freedoms - not to depress you, but because this is the key issue of our lives and legacy, and neither party currently represents a solution. If we change nothing else, we must change that. When do we begin? Now.

To simplify your scans, I've divided the links into sections: Economos (global economy), Techne Logos (tech), Polis (domestic politics), Stratiootika (geopolitics & military), plus 1 Good News This Week item to brighten your week and/or make you better. Enjoy!


prosenberg: Recall the Aug 30/12 Mind Food re: Brandon. Here's his 1st interview after being kidnapped (it was NOT a lawful arrest) and confined in a psychiatric ward, solely for Facebook posts. And please note again, that no one will lose their job over this:

  • Hope and Change 2 - The Party of Inclusion (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart - incl. video, Sept 5/12). jkatzman: "At the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC, the Best F#@king News Team Ever tests the limits of the Democratic Party's big-tent inclusiveness." HILARIOUS. Too bad TTP only works with YouTube - this is a video to mail around!

  • Footage (MegaVideo) What Really Happened In The Kim Dotcom Raid (YouTube). mrapp: 3News NZ's report on the over the top raid on Kim Dotcom's residence, complete with helicopters and SWAT teams, based on an illegal warrant. The question is becoming: why do big media companies charge exorbitant prices for their product, then persuade their government enforcement friends into eliminating competition through illegal search warrants, SWAT team raids, and taxpayer-funded court proceedings costing defendants and taxpayers millions? Rent-a-brownshirts for one's cronies have always been a hallmark of police states. Is that what we're coming to?

  • Romney Unleashes Swing-State Offensive (Breitbart Big Government, Sept 6/12). edd7: There's a list / links to the ads that are, or will be playing.

  • How to Read Zizek (LA Review of Books, Sept 2/12). jkatzman: Zizek is a Marxist, but think about the psychology of the fascinating method he outlines. It's an approach that could be very useful to non-Marxists - as instructive in its way as Alinsky's, and perhaps better suited to conservative pre-dispositions.

The DNC in Charlotte, and the current shape of the race, is the subject of an Oration section near the bottom.


The Portman Lecture in the Spirit of Entrepreneurship: "Entrepreneurship and the Future of the Global Economy" by Carl J. Schramm of MIT. The underlying ideas around information and entrepreneurship are big, and there are a number of bits like his evisceration of microfinance that are very much worth watching.

  • Romney, Bain, and Me (American Spectator, September 2012). agimarc. By George Gilder: "At the time, supply-side was that hot. But every speech and book that I produced from then on bore the imprint of my conversations with people at Bain. I learned more from them than from any other audience... the key role of learning and information in economics."

  • CitizenK2: Another major solar company bites the dust. This time, it's Global Solar Energy Deutschland (GSED), a leader in flexible Copper Indium Gallium diSelenide (CIGS) thin film solar cell technology. This is not to say that solar has not place in electric power production. Oil/gas production companies and state highway departments have been using them for over a decade where low/remote power requirements make it uneconomical to install a generator or run miles of electrical cable. But governments have created a bubble, and these solar company insolvencies have been hitting Europe as much as here. I get auction notices all of the time.

  • Breitbart: King Wind Project "Worse than Solyndra" (The Maine Wire, Sept 10/12). downeastcraig: Angus King, former governor of Maine, Obama supporter, and front-running independent Senate candidate, appears to have stuck taxpayers twice, with a scheme that looks a lot like fraud.

  • Field of dreams: Israel's natural gas (Financial Times Magazine, Aug 31/12). "Experts are convinced that Tamar and Leviathan will not be the last big Israeli discoveries. They point to the US Geological Survey..."

  • Analysis - Kurdish oil deals have Baghdad in a bind (Reuters, Sept 6/12). edd7. The Kurds have been the real winners so far in Iraq & Syria.

  • Mark Collins - CNOOC and Nexen: "Deep-Water Rigs Are a 'Strategic Weapon'" (CDFAI, Aug 30/12). "With the Nexen deal, [China's] Cnooc would acquire the Canadian company's deep-water operations in the Gulf of Mexico. That would provide Cnooc, which mostly operates in shallow waters, with deep-water expertise that could be applied to the South China Sea."

Techne Logos



As a final Polis sendoff, I leave you with the video of the Democratic Party booing God and Jerusalem.

Jack Kelly reminds us that elections are decided by people who vote. I expect the above convention video to make the social media and email "shadownet" rounds within many churches, and push them to vote - just as the GOP's astonishingly stupid rules abuse will make the email rounds of Republican Ron Paul supporters, and either keep them home, or leave them voting for Gary Johnson.

Meanwhile, in Charlotte's Web...

It was actually a pretty effective convention for the Democrats, more so than the GOP's based on the respective videos I watched. Bill Clinton has the political talent that Obama only claims to have, and it showed. His unreserved endorsement of Obama has both helped 0's re-election chances, and lowered the longer-term odds that both sides of the American political divide can find a way to live together peacefully through a 4th Turning. He's great at politics, and like it or not, his endorsement matters to many Americans. Which is precisely why I wish he hadn't failed the seriousness of our country's moment. Noonan is right that "All great partisan speeches include some hard and uncomfortable truths." I wish he had been bigger than he was, instead of smaller than he can be.

The GOP has some symbols of their own to use - but they must use them, again and again. The Chair needs to become a campaign staple on the national stage, as well as by the grassroots. All the more so because media mockery of Clint's improv speech had the unintended effect of ensuring that everyone, left, right, or in-between, knows exactly what the empty chair means.

Ryan's Faded Poster must be a consistent wake-up call delivered to and BY a demographic that is slipping away from Obama.

And The Rise of the Oceans, vs. helping You and Your Family, has to be driven home until Romney and Ryan are tired of saying it. It pokes sharply at the current incumbent's dangerous narcissism, at a man who can't handle being made fun of. That tends to lead to unforced errors. But even more important, it highlights the theme of a better life for the middle class. That's the key battleground for this election, and the Romney-Ryan campaign still trails in many polls on that topic. The Oceans vs. Your Family both undermines Obama's credibility in that area, and turns attention to the GOP's case, especially if it's used as the standard lead-in for specifics.

Having said all that, here's why you should take many recent polls with several grains of salt. "If in a poll that CNN reports Obama is plus six but Romney is up 14 in independents, what does it tell you about the rest of the sample?" Indeed.

Whatever you do, you need to be one of the people who vote. And campaign. If not for Romney, then for Gary Johnson, spreading a message of liberty that will pay long-term dividends. If not for them, then for a Congressional or Senate candidate you believe in. Our future is too important - and this is the time.

Useful Web Resources

hardcharger suggested adding 1-2 clever web sites each week for bookmarking and use, to help people become smarter Internet users. Good idea.

Over The Hump: Good News This Week

hardcharger: This has gone completely viral now, and I've personally received it from nearly every former warrior I know. It stirs something in the spirit of all military. Traditions for the fallen among us are very important to demonstrate reverence for a comrade in arms while providing an avenue of expression for sometimes overwhelming grief. The Kiwis do it a bit differently, but with or without understanding their Maori traditions, if you've ever lost close friends in combat, no explanation is necessary... you can feel it.

JK: I love hakas. Some are ceremonial, like this one. Many have a military origin, and the most serious were performed before battle. Which is why New Zealand's famous All Blacks rugby team does hakas before each game. Fortunately, when modern hakas have people sticking out their tongues, it's no longer a serious declaration that "I'm going to kill you, and then I'm going to eat you."

For The Constitution!

Joe Katzman