Guest Post: The Old Man And The Sea - 2011

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Jim Quinn of The Burning Platform

The Old Man And The Sea - 2011

The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists.” Ernest Hemingway


“Though the Federal Reserve policy harms the average American, it benefits those in a position to take advantage of the cycles in monetary policy. The main beneficiaries are those who receive access to artificially inflated money and/or credit before the inflationary effects of the policy impact the entire economy. Federal Reserve policies also benefit big spending politicians who use the inflated currency created by the Fed to hide the true costs of the welfare-warfare state.” Ron Paul

Ernest Hemingway and Ron Paul never met. Ron Paul was completing medical school in 1961 when Hemingway committed suicide at his home in Idaho. I think they would have hit it off. I stumbled across the quote from Hemingway above. Those words could have come directly out of the mouth of Ron Paul. Both men spent their whole lives seeking the truth and presenting their ideas in a blunt straightforward manner. Hemingway is one of the most renowned writers in American history, with classics such as A Farewell to Arms, For Whom the Bell Tolls, and The Sun Also Rises to his credit. He won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1954. He constructed a new literary style characterized by lean, hard, sparse dialogue. He influenced literature and young authors for decades. As a teenager I was immediately drawn to his gritty realistic novels. There was no nonsense to his novels. They always involved man’s struggle against death and hardship. Most of his best work was done in the 1920s and 1930s, but he produced one of his finest works in 1951 towards the end of his life. Hemingway won the Pulitzer Prize for his story about an epic battle between an old man and a great marlin.

Ernest Hemingway was bigger than life. Hemingway’s real life reads like a Stephen Spielberg Indiana Jones movie. He was an ambulance driver in World War I, where he was seriously wounded. He had four wives. He lived in Paris during the 1920s associating with other famous “Lost Generation” writers. He was a correspondent during the Spanish Civil War and World War II, while also joining in the fighting. He survived two plane crashes and multiple car accidents. He battled alcoholism and mental illness, eventually taking his own life, just as his father, brother and sister had done before him. His novels reflected the pain, struggle and inevitability of death that permeated his own life.

The Old Man and the Sea is a novel about Santiago, an old fisherman whose life is approaching its conclusion, and his final heroic struggle against a great marlin and the evil sharks that ultimately devour his prize. The mark of a great writer is the ability to tell a story that means many things to many people. Hemingway described his aim in writing this novel:

“No good book has ever been written that has in it symbols arrived at beforehand and stuck in. … I tried to make a real old man, a real boy, a real sea and a real fish and real sharks. But if I made them good and true enough they would mean many things.”

His novels always had a gritty reality to them. This particular novel is rich with symbolism and life lessons that are timeless and relevant today. The plot of the story is quite basic, but the character analysis reveals much deeper insights. For eighty-four days, Santiago, an aged Cuban fisherman, has set out to sea and returned empty-handed. So strikingly unlucky is he that the parents of his young, devoted apprentice and friend, Manolin, have forced the boy to leave the old man in order to fish in a more prosperous boat. On the eighty-fifth day he decides to sail far into the Gulf Stream past where most fishermen would dare venture alone. A big fish, which he knows is a marlin, takes the bait that Santiago has placed one hundred fathoms deep in the waters. The old man expertly hooks the fish, but he cannot pull it in. Instead, the fish begins to pull the boat.

Unable to tie the line fast to the boat for fear the fish would snap a taut line, the old man bears the strain of the line with his shoulders, back, and hands, ready to give slack should the marlin make a run. The great fish pulls the boat for two straight days. The entire time, Santiago endures constant pain from the fishing line. Whenever the fish lunges, leaps, or makes a dash for freedom, the cord cuts Santiago badly. Although wounded and weary, the old man feels a deep empathy and admiration for the marlin, his brother in suffering, strength, and resolve. On the third day, the fish tires and Santiago is able to kill him with his harpoon. He lashes it to the side of the boat and begins the long journey home.

As Santiago navigates toward his destination, the marlin’s blood leaves a trail in the water and attracts sharks. The first to attack is a great mako shark, which Santiago manages to slay with the harpoon. In the struggle, the old man loses the harpoon, which leaves him vulnerable to more shark attacks. The vicious predator sharks continuously attack Santiago’s trophy and despite killing several of the sharks, his battle became ultimately hopeless. He fights a gallant fight, revealing man’s finest qualities of bravery, confidence, courage, patience, optimism, and intelligence during the struggle.

The scavengers devour the marlin’s precious meat, leaving only skeleton, head, and tail. Santiago chastises himself for going “out too far,” and for sacrificing his great and worthy opponent. He arrives home before daybreak, stumbles back to his shack, and sleeps very deeply. The next morning, a crowd of amazed fishermen gathers around the skeletal carcass of the fish, which is still lashed to the boat. Manolin, who had been worried sick over the old man’s absence, is moved to tears when he finds Santiago safe in his bed. The boy fetches the old man some coffee and the daily papers with the baseball scores, and watches him sleep. When the old man awakens, the two agree to fish as partners once more. The old man returns to sleep and dreams his usual dream of lions at play on the beaches of Africa.

Sadness, resignation and the inevitability of death permeate the pages of this brilliant novel. But it is grace under pressure in the face of overwhelming odds that is the true message Hemingway leaves with the reader. There is no avoiding death, but the critical test of mankind is how you live your life and how you endure the suffering and pain that are inflicted upon you.

The Honor in Struggle, Defeat & Death

“But man is not made for defeat,” he said. “A man can be destroyed but not defeated.” –  Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea 


“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.” - Ernest Hemingway

Life is a journey. At the end of every worldly journey, death awaits. That is a certainty. The ending will be the same for everyone who walks this earth. What matters is the course chosen on the voyage through life. The vast sea represents life’s journey, with its ebbs, flows, and storms that must be navigated. In Hemingway’s portrait of the world, death is inevitable, but the finest men will nonetheless refuse to give in to its power.  In both the sea and in life, there are a number of possibilities that lie hidden from the common eye; some are gifts to be treasured and some are problems to be defeated. Neither will be found unless man embarks upon the journey. If man is lucky enough to discover a treasure he must fight until death to retain it; if man is unlucky enough to discover an evil lurking underneath the surface of the sea, he must fight it bravely and nobly until the end. In either case, it is the struggle that is all- important, and a man obtains the status of hero if he battles the sea (life) with grace under pressure. The only way to obtain the status of hero is to set sail on the uncertain sea of life.

Ron Paul, trained as a doctor in the early 1960s, served his country as an Air Force flight surgeon from 1963 through 1968 during the Vietnam War. He’s been married for 54 years and has raised five children. He has delivered 4,000 babies during his medical career, while routinely providing free care to poor patients and refusing to accept Medicare or Medicaid payments. He has also refused to accept a government pension, seeing it as immoral and hypocritical. He could have spent his life running his medical practice, playing by government mandated rules, and becoming a multi-millionaire. Instead he chose to embark on an uncertain journey into the sea of Washington politics.

He decided to begin his struggle against tyranny, big government and currency debasement by the Federal Reserve on August 15, 1971. While still a medical resident during the 1960s, Paul was influenced by Friedrich Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom, which led him to read many publications by Ludwig von Mises. He became acquainted with economists Hans Sennholz and Murray Rothbard, and credits them with his interest in the study of economics. He came to believe what the Austrian school economists wrote was confirmed when President Richard Nixon “closed the gold window” by implementing the U.S. dollar’s complete departure from the gold standard. On that day, the young physician decided to enter the rough treacherous seas of politics, saying later, “After that day, all money would be political money rather than money of real value.”

Winning and losing are not what is important in life, as we all will lose out to death in the end. It is the honor gained during the struggle that matters. It’s the legacy we leave for future generations. Did we fight the good fight, or did we sit idly by while life passed by? Did your life mean something to someone? You can stay safely on the shore or you can jump into your skiff and sail into the deep water and conquer your marlin. Both Santiago and the marlin display qualities of pride, honor, and courage, and both are subject to the same eternal law: they must kill or be killed. As Santiago reflects when he observes the weary warbler fly toward shore, where it will inescapably meet the hawk, the world is filled with marauders, and no living thing can escape the unavoidable struggle that will lead to its demise. Man and fish will struggle to the death, just as ravenous sharks will ravage an old man’s prize catch.

Ron Paul chose to join the struggle in 1976 when he was elected a Congressman from Texas for the first time. His years in Washington have been a never ending struggle against corruption, the military industrial complex, and the Federal Reserve currency manipulators. He has been a lone fisherman fighting for truth and liberty for over three decades. We are all pulled by our own individual marlins. Ron Paul has endured scorn and derision, much like Santiago endured from the other fishermen after going eighty four days without a catch. He has always stayed focused on the important issues that have led to the relentless decline of the American Empire: liberty versus security, freedom versus government control, and sound money versus persistent Federal Reserve created inflation. He has fought forces within his own party and in the opposition party. Despite fighting this battle alone for decades and being bloodied and battered, he has never given up the fight.

Hemingway’s novel suggests that it is possible to transcend natural law. The very inescapability of destruction creates the terms that allow an admirable man to rise above it. It is specifically through the endeavor to combat the inevitable that a man can prove himself. Indeed, a man can prove this resolve over and over through the worthiness of the adversary he chooses to fight. Santiago, though devastated at the end of the novel, is never defeated. Instead, he emerges as a dignified conqueror. Santiago’s struggle does not enable him to change man’s position in the world. Rather, it enables him to meet his most noble destiny.

After toiling fruitlessly for decades in the corrupt halls of Congress, surrounded by sharks, scorned by the corporate mainstream media pundits, and ignored by a public that has chosen security and delusions of credit based wealth over freedom and personal responsibility, Ron Paul chose to take on his greatest challenge – seeking the Presidency of the United States. The odds were overwhelmingly against him in 2008 and they are again in 2012. He is 76 years old and has every right to be sitting on his porch in Lake Jackson, Texas enjoying the twilight years of his life. He is driven by his sense of duty to future generations of our once great country. Even though deep in his heart he knows this struggle will end in defeat, he endures. He will continue to spread his message of liberty, freedom, sound money and an optimism that has attracted millions of young people to his worldview. Like Santiago, Ron Paul is determined to show “what a man can do and what a man endures.”  

Pride as the Source of Greatness & Determination

“His choice had been to stay in the deep dark water far out beyond all snares and traps and treacheries. My choice was to go there to find him beyond all people. Beyond all people in the world. Now we are joined together and have been since noon. And no one to help either one of us.”Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea 


“The original American patriots were those individuals brave enough to resist with force the oppressive power of King George. I accept the definition of patriotism as that effort to resist oppressive state power. The true patriot is motivated by a sense of responsibility and out of self-interest for himself, his family, and the future of his country” – Ron Paul

The reason Santiago ventured into the deep waters of the Gulf, far past where a lesser fisherman would dare endeavor, was pride. It wasn’t the false pride of vanity, but the pride described by St. Augustine as “the love of one’s own excellence”. It was a virtuous pride revealing his greatness of soul and faith in his own abilities. Santiago’s pride ended up being his tragic flaw. He went out beyond the boundaries of a normal fisherman. In the end he was ruined, along with his prize, by the malevolent sharks. His run of bad luck was an affront to his pride and drove him to go beyond his limits.

Hemingway does not denounce Santiago for being full of pride. On the contrary, Santiago stands as testimony that pride inspires men to greatness. Because the old man concedes that he killed the mighty marlin largely out of pride, and because his capture of the marlin leads in turn to his heroic transcendence of defeat, pride becomes the source of Santiago’s greatest strength. Without a fierce sense of pride, that battle would never have been fought, or would have been forsaken before the end.

Ron Paul has a clear vision of the America our forefathers imagined. It is a vision of a people free from government control of every aspect of their lives. It’s a vision where the people keep what they earn and don’t pay half to government to be redistributed based upon a politician’s re-election aspirations. It’s a vision where the people are free to make their own choices and free to succeed or fail based on their own merits. It’s a vision where a truly free market exists and private bankers do not control and manipulate the currency. It’s a vision that calls for a strong national defense, not being the policeman to the world. It’s a vision where we follow the U.S. Constitution and the rule of law. It’s a vision where a limited government ensures the liberties and freedoms of the population. It’s a vision that calls for balanced budgets, sound money, and citizens and corporations accepting the consequences of their actions. If Santiago was a fisherman in the U.S. today, he would be required to have a license to fish, a permit for his boat, pay taxes on his catch, and probably have to release the marlin because it was endangered. Some government thug would have met Santiago at the dock and written him a ticket for being at sea too long and illegal feeding of sharks.

Is Ron Paul running for President because he desires power, control and glory? Anyone who has ever seen Ron Paul or heard him speak knows he is decent man desperately trying to convey his message:

“The most basic principle to being a free American is the notion that we as individuals are responsible for our own lives and decisions. We do not have the right to rob our neighbors to make up for our mistakes, neither does our neighbor have any right to tell us how to live, so long as we aren’t infringing on their rights. Freedom to make bad decisions is inherent in the freedom to make good ones. If we are only free to make good decisions, we are not really free.” 

It is Ron Paul’s pride and unswerving belief in his message of freedom that inspires him to forge ahead in this grueling voyage destined to fail in the eyes of the media and political sharks that circle him, attacking at every opportunity. What these superficial toadies will never understand is that winning isn’t what is important to Ron Paul. It’s the message and the truth that matters. His pride enables him to endure. It is endurance that matters most in Hemingway’s conception of the world—a world in which death and destruction, as part of the natural order of things, are unavoidable. Hemingway seems to believe there are only two options: defeat or endurance until destruction; Santiago and Ron Paul have chosen the latter. Their stoic determination is mythic, nearly Christ-like in proportion.

Grace Under Pressure

“Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”Ernest Hemingway



“Freedom is not defined by safety. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference. Government cannot create a world without risks, nor would we really wish to live in such a fictional place. Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens’ lives. Liberty has meaning only if we still believe in it when terrible things happen and a false government security blanket beckons.” Ron Paul

Hemingway unquestionably likens Santiago to Christ throughout the novel. Like Christ, he is filled with goodness, patience, and humility. The forces of evil, however, are arrayed against Santiago, as seen when he fends off the sharks. Similarly, Christ had to clash with the wicked Pharisees in Jerusalem. Both men’s struggles end with shame and humiliation. Christ is betrayed, beaten, forced to carry his own cross, and is crucified, with arms outstretched and bleeding hands nailed to the cross. Santiago is betrayed by the sharks and his spirit crushed. Arriving home a disconsolate man, he struggles up the hill with his mast across his back, much like Christ bearing the cross up to Calvary. When he finally lies down in his bed, his arms are stretched straight out with palms up, and his hands are bleeding. It is an obvious reflection of Christ on the cross.

Having read hundreds of articles by Ron Paul and watched an equal number of interviews he has given over the last five years, his goodness, patience and humility shine through in every instance, along with his knowledge, diligence and charitable nature. The ideologues on the left wing and the right wing that dominate the dialogue in the mainstream media despise Dr. Paul and his message. They attempt to denigrate and humiliate him through their propaganda machines by twisting his words and misrepresenting his positions. They fear his message of individual responsibility and peaceful interaction with all nations. Those in power want to control our lives and force American values upon other nations. If Dr. Paul’s ideas were to take root with the American people, the era of corporate fascist big government would be over. The welfare – warfare state would begin to wither away. Dr. Paul, much like Santiago and Christ, never lashes out at the forces of evil confronting him along his journey. He is stoic and resolute as he spreads his message of truth, liberty and hope.     

Santiago’s favorite baseball player was Joe DiMaggio. The Yankee Clipper was the greatest ballplayer of his era. His 56 game hitting streak has never been surpassed. He led his team to nine World Series victories in his thirteen seasons. He played much of his career with painful bone spurs in his heel. His father was a fisherman, as were generations before him. DiMaggio inspired Santiago with his leadership qualities and the determination to win, in spite of handicaps. The image of the baseball hero playing in pain gave Santiago renewed vigor and stamina to bear his own pain. Joe DiMaggio was later used by Simon & Garfunkel as a symbol of an America longing for its past glory:

Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio,
Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you.
What’s that you say, Mrs. Robinson.
Jolting Joe has left and gone away,
Hey hey hey.

Mrs. Robinson

Joe DiMaggio was a symbol of excellence, perseverance, determination and leadership. He overcame adversity and triumphed despite his constant pain. Ron Paul has persevered through decades of obscurity and adversity. But, now his time has come. He is the intellectual godfather of the Tea Party movement. The neo-conservative element of the Republican Party has attempted to hijack the true Tea Party message of limited government, individual liberty, non-interventionism in foreign lands, freedom to live our lives without a smothering government bureaucracy dictating mandates at every turn, and a sound currency not controlled by a private banking cabal. As our country spirals downward due to the complete hijacking of our political system by the moneyed interests on Wall Street and the military industrial complex, leading us into never ending wars, Ron Paul’s message is finally striking a chord, especially among the young people who will be saddled with the crushing debt created by those in power. Despite the blatant lies and attempts to discredit and ignore him, Ron Paul charges forward with perseverance and courage unheard of in a man his age. He doesn’t do it for the glory, but for the unborn future generations who have no voice in their future.

Santiago dreams of lions throughout the novel first as cubs playing on the beach and ultimately as noble warriors, signifying great strength and a sense of renewal and vitality. They inspire confidence and optimism about the future. The old will give way to the young. The aged majestic warrior, through his example of bravery, courage and persistence, leaves the young warriors with a shining example of living life to its utmost and sacrificing personal glory for the good of the many. Ron Paul may not win the Presidency, but the example he has set for the young people of this country has laid the groundwork for a better tomorrow. His message of liberty, freedom and responsibility will resonate far after he has left this earth.

All of the symbols employed by Hemingway add to premise that life is an endless struggle with illusory rewards. In order to achieve nobility in life, a person must exhibit bravery, poise, courage, patience, optimism, and intelligence during the struggle. Then, even if the prize is lost, the person has won the battle, proving himself capable of retaining grace under pressure, the ultimate test of mankind. Ron Paul’s life is a shining example of grace under pressure. He has single handedly battled his great fish (Big Government, Big Finance, Big Military) for four decades with no helpers and many detractors. His journey is nearing its end. But it isn’t how it ends that matters. The journey is what separates the noble lion (Ron Paul) from the hyenas (corrupt politicians) and jackals (media). Ron’s message will not die. His son will carry the torch. The young people who have been inspired by his words and example will carry the torch. All of our lives will end the same way. The lesson to be learned from Ron Paul is how we should live our lives.

The ideologically myopic pundits that pass for the intelligentsia in the mainstream media scornfully declare that Ron Paul has no chance of winning, when all critical thinking citizens recognize that he has already won. They can destroy him, but he will not be defeated.

“Up the road, in his shack, the old man was sleeping again. He was still sleeping on his face and the boy was sitting by him watching him. The old man was dreaming about the lions.”  - Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea 


“Ideas are very important to the shaping of society. In fact, they are more powerful than bombings or armies or guns. And this is because ideas are capable of spreading without limit. They are behind all the choices we make. They can transform the world in a way that governments and armies cannot. Fighting for liberty with ideas makes more sense to me than fighting with guns or politics or political power. With ideas, we can make real change that lasts.” Ron Paul

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cossack55's picture

The fishing is extremely lively within 5 kms of Fukushima.  Sadly, every fish you pull out will look like The Bernank.


RP 2012

fuu's picture

Now with Neptunium!

Go Ron Paul!

ww2vet's picture

another losing idea from zh fools --- like gold which keeps failing and failing -$1500 before  if ever! $2000 - i'm sure most zh  on food stamps

Abiotic Oil's picture

How's that nexus between Social Security's lack of COLA and real (not CPI crap) inflation treatin' ya?

Enjoying your cat food?

tmosley's picture

Oh look, another retard with the attention span of a gnat.

BobPaulson's picture

Sigh. Remember the good old days when trolls were funny?

Gmpx's picture

I am not on food stamps and I have my own business in black and no debt. I was dirt poor on several occasions and know what it means. Ron Paul is your savious dear Americans. He is making history now and those who do not support him will be remembered as schmuks in the history books.'s picture

Ron Paul is your savious dear Americans.


Ron Paul is John the Baptist. He announces the arrival of the savior who is you...and you...and you.

V10's picture

I support most of Ron Paul's positions, but please, I'm sick of hearing "He's the messiah!" about any politician.

scrappy's picture

Nice essay, however, there is one glaring problem with Ron Paul and all the libertarians of the Mises School of thought, and that is the advocacy of the “Gold Standard”

I suggest you follow the below link to find out why, and perhaps if you are open minded, adjust your views Jim.

falak pema's picture

The sparkling Bernanke has a touch of class like the great Gatsby. I'm not sure Hemingway would have liked this allusion to his rival whose wife drove him nuts, as she craved for nut cracker's suite all the time with her french lover, to the point of ending up in a swiss shrink resort where they knew how to electrochoc her neurotic impulses. It miscured her definitively. 

AldousHuxley's picture

I couldn’t forgive him or like him, but I saw that what he had done was, to him, entirely justified. It was all very careless and confused. They were careless people, Tom and Daisy — they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made. . .


Bernanke is the rich patriarch who is enabling the irresponsible and selfish child-like behavior amongst the upper crust. What the old aristocracy possesses in taste, however, it seems to lack in heart, as the East Eggers prove themselves careless, inconsiderate bullies who are so used to money’s ability to ease their minds that they never worry about hurting others.

AldousHuxley's picture
The Valley of Ashes

The valley of ashes between West Egg and New York City consists of a long stretch of desolate land created by the dumping of industrial ashes. It represents the moral and social decay that results from the uninhibited pursuit of wealth, as the rich indulge themselves with regard for nothing but their own pleasure. The valley of ashes also symbolizes the plight of the poor, like George Wilson, who live among the dirty ashes and lose their vitality as a result.

AldousHuxley's picture

“Though the Federal Reserve policy harms the average American, it benefits those in a position to take advantage of the cycles in monetary policy. The main beneficiaries are those who receive access to artificially inflated money and/or credit before the inflationary effects of the policy impact the entire economy. Federal Reserve policies also benefit big spending politicians who use the inflated currency created by the Fed to hide the true costs of the welfare-warfare state.” Ron Paul


This is the "trickle down" theory in its essence.

  1. Fed prints money and give to primary dealers.
  2. Primary dealers allocate money into various funnels including Treasury, foreign investments, private sector, small banks
  3. Then politicians, executives, local banks provid funding to business units, political special interests, small businesses
  4. Employees and worker bees who in turn recycle the money back as consumers

Currently, the money is at step 2 where large banksters are "investing" into commodities and other real assets effectively front running the release of the money supply  into the general economy, because they know money supply has increased thus inflation is guaranteed in the future. This is why banks will always make money with smallest risk. The money changers proved themseleves to be irresponsible, but they are once again rescued while main street suffers. The system is corrupt.


MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

On the contrary, I believe the old man in Hemmingway's book more strikingly resembles Dr Paul Krugman. Since the 2007 housing market crash, Dr Krugman has been tirelessly calling for bold fiscal and monetary stimulus programs. Initially, his suggestions were willingly implemented in the form of cash for clunkers and and other programs. This was Krugman's marlin - the controversial advice he had given was wiloingly accepted by congress and happily accomodated by Federal Reserve officials. Over the next four years however, Krugman's marlin was torn to pieces as congress failed to continue the necessary fiscal stimulus programs. As a result the economy began to once again deterriorate and Krugman's reputation was scarred by Libertarian propagandists.

Vergeltung's picture

even for satire, that was an over-reach.  :-)


theMAXILOPEZpsycho's picture

You make me piss my pant laughing every time! The thing is, say what you say to my family, collegues, etc and they'll all agree in unison!

Anyway, great article! sometimes its good to remember great men of the past battling with life, existence, destiny. It makes the whole debate on debt, greece, hyperinflation, credit, money supply, gold etc etc seem trivial.

TheBillMan's picture

Oh God, I love your comments.  However, I the analogy should be Dr. Klugman (and yes I misspelled his name on purplose) as the marlin getting eaten by the sharks (angry public).  Better yet, several marlins each representing the Bernank, Turbo Timmah, and their ilk.  They all get eaten.  Now if there was only some way to get the bad taste out of your mouth afterwards.

TheBillMan's picture

Oh God, I love your comments.  However, I think the analogy should be Dr. Klugman (and yes I misspelled his name on purpose) as the marlin getting eaten by the sharks (angry public).  Better yet, several marlins each representing the Bernank, Turbo Timmah, and their ilk.  They all get eaten.  Now if there was only some way to get the bad taste out of your mouth afterwards.

oobrien's picture

Well, I live in Asia.

And I'm drunk on Jinro Soju.

Goodnight, ladies.

Sweet dreams.


janus's picture

oh, shit!

you did not just say soju!

janus has em heap of stories involving that strange, unregulated brew.

osan and kunsan, bitchez!

i'll just let them fade into the recesses of my memories; but, careful with that shit, you never know how drunk you are till you stand....and then, invariably, fall.

narapoiddyslexia's picture

Koreans alone consume nearly one billion bottles of Jinro Soju per month, and its 24% alcohol. 

The company web site states, "Its alcohol content is just enough to give a "kick" to your favorite cocktails but mild enough for an extended drinking experience."


Maybe Krugman, Geithner, Bernanke, Summers, and the Big O should partake?

eazyas's picture

Big Ronnie talks the talk, but can he walk the walk ?

DormRoom's picture

The Tea Party control the Republican Party.  They've all but annointed Rick Perry.  Ron Paul is an Republican ideal whose time has passed.  So sayest the bible, and the constitution.

Dangertime's picture

The Tea Party has been hijacked.


How many of you truly think that Sara Palin truly was a Tea Party member?  And Rick Perry?

These people just sway in the wind of voter mood.  But does anything think they will ever deliver the true medicine this Country needs?


Never.  They are just more incarnations of the corrupt system we already have.  Sadly, too many people have taken the bait that the hijacked tea party has thrown.


The tea party was real to start with.  And it shocked both parties.  But now, it's nothing.

hampsterwheel's picture

First of all Ron Paul speaking is the closest thing we have to a founder alive - the fact that his message is thrown in the trash, or that is foreign policy is called "dangerous" shows you just how far we have come.

America is an Oligarchy, she is no longer a free soveriegn nation - one look at a dollar bill tells you that. Our Republic is dead - and perhaps it should be for it was made for only a moral people. Therefore we have the very tyranny we deserve.

There is zero way this oligarchy will allow a competing currency or political thought to gain power. Supreme court? LOL - as corrupt as every other branch just no one wants to discuss that.

We are living in a matrix of our own creating - as long as ESPN and country music exist and old men tear up over patriotic symbols and of long dead buddies then the wars and the oligarchy will remain.

So we will go on proping up the House of Saud, if money doesn't work then bombs will. We will on making sure our boys in Afghanistan die so as to give the CIA all the Heroin money they need to play their off budget games - we will export our inflation across the globe creating instability and ruining lives - but as long as we get ours its all good....

Enjoy it will it lasts - the Romans certainly did, it was only that last generation that it kinda of sucked belonging to - those Hun's were a bitch...

pazmaker's picture

good post hampster..... isn't the truth depressing?

Raymond Reason's picture

Always refreshing to read through the expressed thoughts of a clear and sound mind.  Its why i read  posts on this site, many gems to be found.  Yes the truth is grim.  But i'd rather hear the grim truth, than a pleasant lie. 

kridkrid's picture

that is my position, entirely.  It's masterful, the way they pulled it off.  They weren't even covering their tracks along the way... it was right out in the open.  Sean Hannity embraces it.... attach Palin and Perry to the message... saddle the movement with a number of social issues and you're right back where you started.  A single party acting as two with a number of pretend wedge issues keeping them corralled.

Ura Bonehead's picture

These people just sway in the wind of voter mood.

Politicians have ALWAYS 'swayed in the wind' of the voter’s content to hear what they want to hear. The problem's not the politicians, the banksters, Democrats, Republicans, the Fed... The problem is the wind. The Tea Party hasn't been hijacked, they're just part of the ever-changing wind pattern. The Tea Party failed b/c (like so many other movements) it itself put it's faith in politicians (like Palin, Bachmann...) instead of harnessing the power of their own wind.  America needs a HURICANE of change, not another weathervane politician.

As a Texan and American I understand and love Ron Paul.  But Ron’s problem is that in between making good sense he drifts into thoughts about seeing little green men under his bed (read: policies of immigration, drug reform, Middle East policy…).  A bit spooky, no?

PD Quig's picture

'Big Ron' has a minor problem: his foreign policy thoughts are idiotic. Love his economic views, but you can't be a flake on foreign policy and win the presidency.

Internet Tough Guy's picture

Are you posting from Afghanistan or are you a hypocrite?

Judge Holden's picture

He's in the 101st Keyboard Brigade.

narapoiddyslexia's picture

Hey, PD Quig - foreign policy and domestic economic policy are the same thing, nitwit.


clymer's picture

Hey PD - looks like you're good at spouting insults, but not so good at articulating 1.) an example of an idiotic Ron Paul foreign policy idea, and 2.) a good one of your own



RemiG2010's picture

You can, if you are a schizophrenic or if you have bipolar disorder. Pick one PD Quig has?!

PD Quig's picture

Hey, just because Paul buys into Al-Qaeda's justification for their attacks on us, is no reason to think him a fool, right?

You guys are religious zealots, not clear thinkers. Do I wish we would pull our troops out of countries around the world? To a great degree, yes, I agree with that. Unfortunately, his rationale plays right into the Islamofascist cant. If you are too stupid to believe that the jihadis would like do destroy us from without and from within--and that the reason for their actions is a fundamental antipathy to the principles of liberty (fucking DUH!)--then you're too stupid to be president of the United States.


damage's picture

Then why does Michael Scheuer the former head of the CIA's Bin Laden unit agree with him? Ron Paul's position was taken from Michael Scheuer's book.

What would you do differently?

HL Shancken's picture

"...The liberal mindset of the CIA has not only led to a long series of grave errors in judgment and gross misreadings of many international situations; it has also led it to hire large numbers of radicals into its ranks.  The extent of the damage done by such people can only be guessed, but a good idea of the dimensions can be gleaned from observing the behavior of the growing number of far-left ex-CIA employees running about in the anti-America movement today.


Leftists emerging from the shadows of the American intelligence community are of course nothing new.  The most famous postwar example was no doubt Daniel Ellsberg, who has spent his later years as a button man for the far Left.  Ellsberg, however, was never actually employed by the CIA, but by RAND.  Others, at least as radical as him, were.  Of those, the worst is arguably Philip Agee, who left the CIA and published the seditious Covert Action Information Bulletin, with the help of both the KGB and the Cuban DGI, a magazine dedicated to promoting "a worldwide campaign to destabilize the CIA through exposure of its operations and personnel."  Agee told Swiss journalist Peter Studer, “The CIA is plainly on the wrong side, that is, the capitalistic side. I approve KGB activities, communist activities in general. Between the overdone activities that the CIA initiates and the more modest activities of the KGB, there is absolutely no comparison.”  Today Agee runs a website from his home in Havana,, and is a dedicated communist.


In recent years, veterans of the CIA who were employed by the Agency have emerged as some of the most extremist bashers of America in the ”antiwar movement”.  One well-known example is Michael Scheuer, who anonymously penned Imperial Hubris, a book critical of the conduct of the war on terrorism since the mid-1990s.  Scheuer had been assigned to create a “bin Laden desk” at the CIA.  After resigning from the Agency, he went on a campaign against the US invasion of Iraq, warning that Moslems worldwide were growing to hate the US because of its “policies”, and in particular he blamed US support for Israel for anti-American terrorism.  He considers bin Laden to be a “great man”.



Former CIA agent Melvin Goodman holds roughly similar political opinions, claims the CIA is being used to recruit public opinion and undermine domestic opposition to Bush’s policies, and is similarly politically active and tied to leftist groups.  He denounces the CIA for its failure to predict the collapse of the Soviet Union, although gives no evidence that he had himself predicted any such collapse before it occurred.  Goodman also seems to endorse 9-11 conspiracy “theories”.  Appearing at Rep. Cynthia McKinney’s hearings, which featured panelists who posited theories on 9/11 ranging from the Twin Towers coming down as a result of a “controlled demolition” to the Pentagon being blown up deliberately and not partially destroyed by a hijacked aircraft, Goodman was quoted as saying about McKinney, “I hope someday her views will be considered conventional wisdom.”


Of those leftist ex-agents of the CIA who are publicly active in leftist policics, most are also openly anti-Semitic, with deep ties not only to radical leftist groups but also to neonazi and Holocaust Denial organizations and web sites; the most notable illustration is the husband-and-wife team of William and Kathleen Christison, to whom we will return shortly..."

saiybat's picture

It would not be an exaggeration for me to say that this opinion article considers criticism of the CIA to be leftist or communist propganda. This is called guilt by association and circumstantial ad hominem; the argument is erroneous and would not be an opinion I'd adopt.

Ask yourself what is the difference between the opinion column of Steven Plaut the author of this article and Philip Agee's column that Plaut references to in his article. Is there any difference at all other than the ideologies that they sell? Steven Plaut of the Frontpagemag accuses Philip Agee of running a propagandist column but wouldn't this same way of reasoning also implicate Steven Plaut of doing the very same thing he accuses Philip Agee and many others of doing? It's something to think about. I see the artile as hypocrisy and maybe you won't see it the same way.

dark_matter's picture

Anyone who uses the term "islamofascist" seriously has already drunk the neoconservative koolaid. I work with Iraqis (they are engineers and now US citizens) and it has been very educational. They hated Saddam. They also hate Al Qaeda. They also hate Donald Rumsfeld. Who do they think sees the situation most clearly? Ron Paul. Al Qaeda never would have gotten a toe hold in Iraq if not for the American invasion.

Judge Holden's picture

Exactly.  We're talking about a few hundred backwards angry impotent Muslims here.

PD Quig's picture

Islamofascist is a pretty apt, shorthand term for people who hang gays, perform clitorectomies on women, behead journalists, ban music, destroy other religion's holy places, and in general, kill indescriminately, and loathe freedom. If the term bothers you, then use whatever term might make you stop thinking of your personal devils, Dick Cheney et al, and address the reality of a movement that is insinuating itself into every country in the Middle East.

Oh yes, I know that they are really powerless and that I'm imagining their numbers, strength, and influence--the neocon that I must be for having the temerity to believe what I see with my own eyes instead of believing the fairy tale that you non-cons would have us accept. Your way has worked so well in Europe, hasn't it? As Europe ignores the danger in its very midst, the sharia law advocates win battle after battle in the courts. They won't have to do battle in Europe, the Europeans are committing slow suicide by reproductive failure and multiculi cultural flaccidity. In 50 years there will be no more European Europe--if it takes that long.

So, please quote to me the Arabist CIA line of thinking. After all, they have been such an effective organization over the past 50 years. The CIA needs to be disbanded and foreign intel turned over to the military--the only large governmental organization worth a shit in this country. The FBI can handle the internal intel job. And if you want to bury your head in the sand as to the existential threat posed by the jihadis, be my guest. I carry no water for either the Dems nor the GOP.

Judge Holden's picture

LOL LOL LOL You are such a sucker for biggoted propaganda.  Watch out those dirty Muslims (1% of the population) are going to overthrow your government and take over!!!!1  OMG Sharia law!  You small minded tool - you and people like you are a far greater threat to me and my freedom than some illiterate Jihadi living in a sewer in Pakistan.

PD Quig's picture

So far you have said nothing other than make some dipshit ad hominem attack on me. Typical lefty: when you have no argument, foam at the mouth.


Judge Holden's picture

I've long given up trying to debate biggoted chickenhawks/cowards like you as you're completely irrational AND ignorant of history.  Anyone who still worries about "Islamofacism" after 10 years of devastation wrought by the War on Terror (6,000 US soldiers dead, 100,000's of innocent Iraqis/Afghani civilians dead, TRILLIONS of dollars spent, increased state surveillance of citizens) is beyond saving.

In other news... OMG look out, I overheard some new intel about how the #2 in AQ just announced that they were going to implement Sharia in New York!!!  RUN!!!!!!!!!!!

dark_matter's picture

You make many points. I will address but two.

Fascists (like Mussolini an Hitler) worked for the fusion of government and industry. Mussolini said fascism = corporatism. Does this apply to the Islamic world. No. As for people who for people who "hang gays, perform clitorectomies on women, behead journalists, ban music, destroy other religion's holy places, and in general, kill indescriminately, and loathe freedom", maybe the islamoinquisitionists would be better a better term.

Second, you call islam an existential threat. This may be true in Europe but it is not their presence there that causes it but the low European birth rate. This is what happened in ancient Rome. The original Romans didn't want to have kids because it cramped their social life. Eventually the Senate was filled with the descendants of slaves. The same thing may happen in the US but it won't be Islam that takes over. From what I see it will be Mexican and Asian immigrants. I don't make this as a racist statement, just an observable fact. To call Islam an existential threat to the US is ridiculous.

And finally, I mentioned my Iraqi acquaintances. Americans have no idea what Iraq was like pre-Iraq war (I mean the first one under George I). My friend describes it as a wonderful place. Education was free and pretty good. The college girls wore mini-skirts. Health care was free. People cared about each other. You could visit friends any time, day or night and be cordially received. You could swim in the river. Vegetables were cheap and plentiful. Homelessness didn't exist. People loved Americans. If your sister was mistreated by her husband, the brothers and cousins beat the crap out of her husband insuring it wouldn't happne again. Saddam was a ruthless dictator but if you didn't oppose him you could have a good life (and BTW treatment of dissidents under the American regime is no different that treatement under Saddam). Their society had many admiral qualities we would be wise to emulate. Of course the wonderful place he describes is gone and most of their families have come to the US. They hated Saddam but they don't see Saddam as the despoiler of their country.





SteveNYC's picture

"...the reason for their actions is a fundamental antipathy to the principles of liberty"

Dumbest. Line. Ever. It is barely possible to fathom the stupidity in this comment. A soundbite George "hate us for our freedom" Bush would have been proud of.

Beau Tox's picture

Interventionists Ready a Media Lynching for Ron Paul

by Michael Scheuer

The past ten days have seen a spate of pieces on Google News damning Congressman Ron Paul for “blaming” America for the 9/11 attacks. This is just the start of what will become a wave of ever-more shrill and lie-filled attacks on Mr. Paul as long as he is seeking the Republican presidential nomination and continues to find growing public support. The attacks on Mr. Paul are and will be the work of the Neoconservatives, the Israel-First fifth column of U.S. citizens, and AIPAC and those it controls in the Congress, media, and academy.

baby_BLYTHE's picture

Scheuer has ballz of steel! We are lucky to have an insider with his kind of knowledge putting it all out on the line for us.

Michael Scheuer- Israel Is Spying On The U.S., Stealing Technology & Bribing CONgress