A look at the record hits, and what they tell us about ourselves

Summary:  Please share your experience with the FM website. What post(s) have you found most interesting, useful, or memorable. Also, here are the most popular posts — this list tells us something about America.

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Here are the all-time biggest hits on the FM website since we started in November 2007 (success is a relative thing, these have fewer hits than posts about Katy Perry’s lunch).  Most of these are 2 – 4 years old. Many of these remain news even today, more evidence of our current failure to learn.

I don’t see on this list the most insightful or prophetic posts. Not a surprise. Popular posts tend to look at our history, explain today’s news, and look five minutes into the future. Those that explain the big trends and what’s coming down the pike are usually too strange for mass appeal. Too different, too disturbing.  We pretend that we live in Kansas. We do not welcome the news that we have landed in Oz.

Flying Monkey
It’s a squirrel!

“Look, a flying monkey!”

“No, that’s just a squirrel.”

Geopolitics

Iran will have the bomb in 5 years (again), January 2010 30,214
Obama makes his first major policy error, February 2009 22,613
“Some people just want to see the world burn”, January 2009 19,659
A major leak of government secrets – read all about it!, February 2009 12,183
More about pirates: why we no longer “hang them high”, January 2009 11,382
Will China become a superpower?, September 2011 10,876

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Miscellaneous subjects

Top Hits

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Women dominate the ranks of college grads. What’s the effect on America?, July 2009 25,265
Peak Oil Doomsters debunked, end of civilization called off, May 2008 21,608
The little-known dark side of Ender’s Game, September 2010 11,777
Justice still lives. It’s found a new home – in Europe., December 2012 10,938
Japan can again become the land of the rising sun. We should watch & learn from them., November 2011 10,360
The media doing what it does best, feeding us disinformation, Feb 2009 10,268
A tipping point for America as Washington becomes its heart & soul, Jan 2009 10,008

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The Economy

A solution to our financial crisis, September 2008 22,944
The Titanic’s lessons for us about the coming economic crisis, June 2012 20,181
What will America look like after this recession?, March 2008 14,527
Everything written about the economic crisis overlooks its true nature, February 2009 13,361
A picture of the post-WWII debt supercycle, September 2008 10,628
Update: why has the worst recession since the 1930′s had so little impact on the economy?, October 2010 10,530
Why has the worst recession since the 1930′s had such a mild effect on America?, July 2009 10,369

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Global Warming

Mother Jones sounds the alarm about global warming! This time about the north pole., December 2012 26,866
An article giving strong evidence of global warming, June 2008 20,095
Good news about global warming!, October 2008 11,087

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Journey to Oz
Journey to Oz

For More Information

See the posts listed on the FM Reference page:

Some of the key posts (note none of these are among the most-read):

  1. Forecast: Death of the American Constitution, 4 July 2006
  2. We have been warned. Death of the post-WWII geopolitical regime, Chapter II, 28 November 2007 — A long list of the warnings we have ignored, from individual experts and major financial institutions.
  3. Death of the post-WWII geopolitical regime, III – death by debt, 8 January 2008 – Origins of the long economic expansion from 1982 to 2006; why the down cycle will be so severe.
  4. Our metastable Empire, built on a foundation of clay, 3 March 2008 — More thoughts on the “dreamland” described by Wolfgang Schivelbusch in The Culture of Defeat, and what it tells us about the foundation of the American empire.
  5. A look at our future, when our $promises$ to ourselves come due, 25 March 2010
  6. A look at the future of the world’s political and economic order, 4 June 2010
  7. Is there any way out from the burden of government debt?, 10 June 2010
  8. Is the American Republic dying, as in the last days of the Roman Republic?, 20 July 2010
  9. The coming big increase in structural unemployment, 7 August 2010
  10. The story of the early 21st century: the future arrives, forcing us to build a new world order, 6 December 2010
  11. It’s the end of the world we’ve known since WWII (updated status report), 29 June 2012

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20 thoughts on “A look at the record hits, and what they tell us about ourselves

    1. Here is our secret weapon in the Clash of Civilizations. Here is what terrifies the terrorists. We corrupt their youth.

    2. We came in like a wrecking ball
      All we wanted was to break your walls
      We never meant to start a war
      We just wanted you to let us in

    3. The languages I study, Finnish and Japanese. I find Finland is completely overrun with English language music. You really have to work to find radio stations that play songs in Finnish, which really sucks if you just want something to listen to just to absorb some language. For Japanese, though, they know the major stars, the Lady Gaga’s and stuff like that, but the exposure seem that deep, and most of the music I hear from Japanese stations is Japanese in the Japanese language with the occasional bits of English words dropped in. “ai ra-bu yuu-“

  1. Here is the Bane of the Tea Party. A party which seems to demand the status quo at any price. Stop the world, they want to get off! And get those kids out of my driveway!

  2. And just LOOK at her BUTT! it’s so BIG!

    “Sir Mix A Lot – Baby Got Back” (1992)
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    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JphDdGV2TU]

  3. I thought that I had lived long enough to see every possible permutation of productivity. Technology was done, finished. The miracle of science had nothing left to offer. AND THEN……..

    Girls Don’t Poop – PooPourri.com .
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    [youtube=http://youtu.be/ZKLnhuzh9uY]

  4. A bit more about the digitally animated singer Cathryn Mataga posted — not only is Hatune Miku digitally generated in real time (she’s projected on a semitransparent screen in front of the crowd), her voice is also digitally generated in real time using the program Vocaloid.

    You have to wonder how long it’ll be before our politicians are also digitally-generated images spewing synthesized speeches based on polling databases…

    1. Thomas,

      Thanks for the additional info.

      This is a cutting edge in the robot revolution, the next wave of automation. How many people work as models, actors, singers — and their supporting technicians and managers. Slowly these jobs too will be whittled away.

    2. Your comment reminds me of a plot from a Philip K. Dick novel from 1964.

      Wikipedia:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Simulacra

      “Set in the middle of the twenty-first century, The Simulacra is the story of several protagonists within the United States of Europe and America (USEA), formed by the merger of (West) Germany and the United States, where the whole government is a fraud and the President (der Alte, “the Old Man”) is a simulacrum (android). As well as the USEA, other global superpowers are the French Empire, People’s Republic of China and Free (Black) Africa. There is some mention of a World War Three, which may have involved some tactical nuclear weapons, and a possibility that the Soviet Union exists. Communism still exists, but Poland has become its global centre of authority, with its administrative centre now based in Warsaw.”

      “Society is stratified into ‘Ges’ (German Geheimnisträger, “bearers of the secret” (the elite)) and ‘Bes’ (German Befehlsträger, “implementers of instruction” (professional and artisanal)) classes, and there is conspicuous consolidation of political and broadcast media power. The Democratic and Republican Parties merged into a single party, the ‘Democrat-Republican Party’ and the ‘United Triadic Network’ presumably resulted from an amalgamation of NBC, CBS and ABC.”

      “In addition, actual political power has devolved to a permanent First Lady, Nicole Thibodeaux, whose consorts are a series of male presidents – die Alten. While the current der Alte, Rudi Kalbfleisch, is a simulacrum, “Nicole” is human, although the original Nicole Thibodeaux died several decades ago. Since the death of the original, her role has been portrayed by four consecutive actors, and the latest such figure is Kate Rupert. This is a Geheimnis (secret), and insider possession of this secret is enough to insure elite membership through conferral of Ges status.”

  5. “Please share your experience with the FM website. What post(s) have you found most interesting, useful, or memorable. Also, here are the most popular posts — this list tells us something about America.”

    Some years ago you posted a detailed critique of COIN theory as it then was – perhaps Kilcullen was the main voice you were responding to? I am not sure, I cannot find it now. But a few months ago I stumbled upon it again and found myself rather impressed. It was a bit longer form than than usually seen in these parts, but analytically it was still very… precise. Very precise and direct.

    When I read this piece it struck me that the focus of this site has drifted to different grounds since those days. Back then the site was very focused on the “geopolitics from an American perspective” and was pretty eager to devote posts to that end. FM later introduced the ‘invigorate a spirit gone cold’ aim and a lot of that geopolitical and strategic analysis took back seat (I think I remember FM writing at something to the effect that geopolitical commentary is just useless – a parlor game for intellectual amusement – once the common citizens stop playing a meaningful part in the political system.) So that shift makes sense. But then America’s spirit grew colder, not warmer, and talk of reform has mostly been replaced with incisive observations of the way plutarchs are building “new America.”

    Three stages of he FM website.

    Oh, I suppose there has been a general political shift from paleo-conservate(ish) view point to a more outsider-liberal liberal point of view – quotations from Alan Bloom and Fred Reed are supplanted by stuff from Baffler and NSFWcorp, for example. This change has been most notable in stage 3 of the website, but I suppose its root were laid much earlier.

    1. Greer,

      Interesting observations, as usual!

      Note that the times have changed, as have the problems we face. In 2003 it was useful (in theory at least) to point out that our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were mad, and COIN theory a sham. Now the wars are lost, and events have proven COIN a folly. Instead of becoming a senior official in DoD (as was long rumored) John Nagel now teaches history at the US Naval Academy. These are no longer major subjects of interest, IMO.

      The great financial crisis sparked a major transition in focus, starting with Diagnosing the eagle, chapter I — the housing bust, 6 December 2007 — when the official lines was still that there was no housing bubble. And the next year, 2008, about the effects of the crash — rising inequality, economic, and political.

      As a result in 21 December 2009 I posted Re-envisioning the FM website, becoming soldiers in the war for American’s future — announcing the course change you describe.

      I still see Alan Bloom as a valuable guide to understanding our situation — and still quote him extensively, as in this month’s post about the power of music.

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