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Links 5/25/12

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Debt crisis: Germany holds a gun to Greece’s head The Telegraph

Australia Approves Migrant Workers for Mining Projects CNBC

The relative expansion of central banks’ balance sheets Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Rio Issues Land Titles To Slum Residents NPR

America: Slouching Towards Third World Status Project Syndicate

Coverage of Changing Texas Schools Ignores the Racist Elephant in the Room The Texas Observer

Lawmaker calls for peace talks between deceased Arafat, comatose Sharon The Hill

Emperor’s underwear sold for over $8,000! India Times

Haiti Cholera Counter, Just Foreign Policy

Sources: Cuomo tried to keep New York public labor heads off DNC delegate list Politico… This is a stupid move on Cuomo’s part.  I used to be more worried about him, because I thought he was a dangerous and highly intelligent neoliberal politician and a 2016 threat.  But he’s mean and petty.  This kind of pointless insult to the egos of his liberal opponents is the kind of thing that will get them to do whatever they can to stop him.

Romney holds key advantages among financially struggling white voters Washington Post

Egypt Elections 2012: Run-Off Set Between Muslim Brotherhood, Mubarak’s Last Prime Minister Huffington Post… The candidate of the left was defeated, narrowly.

Is the Euro Ending or Beginning? Project Syndicate

RMBS Investigators Announce Website, Coordination Team Mortgage News Daily… They’ve got a website, look out Wall Street.

StopFraud.gov

Insecurity Touches the Tycoons of Greece CNBC

Sadly Barack Obama, like Mitt Romney, is an apologist for the 1% The Guardian

Study Finds Germans Incapable of Enjoying Life Spiegel Online

D – 106 and counting. *

Lambert here:

“The erosion of our confidence in the future is threatening to destroy the social and the political fabric of America.” –Jimmy Carter, July 15, 1979

NATO. “The Chicago police were not hanging their hats on credentialing. They pretty much let anybody and everybody walk around and take all the pictures and video that they wanted.”“Gloves” and “Mo”.

Occupy. OWS and the OWS Librarians file a federal lawsuit against Bloomberg, the City and the NYPD for the roughly 3,600 books that were confiscated—nearly 2,800 of them destroyed in a police raid on Zucotti Party November 17, 2011. OccupyHouston reboots, albeit on FaceBorg. There’s a newsletter signup.

Montreal (Printemps érable). Bill 78: “Anyone who helps or induces a person to commit an offense under this Act is guilty of the same offense.” Times Op-Ed: “Since the beginning of the student strike, leaders have told protesters to avoid violence. Protesters even condemned the small minority of troublemakers who had infiltrated the demonstrations. During the past four months of protests, there has never been the kind of rioting the city has seen” when the Canadiens win the Stanley Cup.

François-Olivier Chené, instigator of the [Chile-style] pots and pans: “It’s a casserole frenzy here.” Hundreds of people stood at the corner of Beaubien and Christophe-Colomb in Montreal banging on their pots and pans Wednesday night to protest Quebec’s Bill 78. “[The protest] was really launched for those people, so that they could demonstrate from home, avoid big groups and still respect the letter of the law.” (Non-violent tactics lower barriers to entry.)

“A peaceful evening march that began with people festively banging pots and pans in support of protesting students ended in the early morning hours with police using the controversial “kettling” tactic on a crowd of demonstrators and arresting 518 people.” “Surrounded by a small army of riot police, hundreds of protesters [of 4,000] sat down on Sherbrooke Street Wednesday night and chanted ‘let’s stay peaceful’.” (“Fatigue may take its toll on police officers: expert.” Translation: Watch out!) “More than 2,500 people have been arrested in a months-long dispute … which is at least five times the number jailed during the 1970 FLQ crisis that saw martial law declared in Quebec.”

Excellent rant: “You can’t eat the butter and keep the butter money.” Translation: It’s student debt, not student fees. (Hat tip Francois for this super source.)

AL. Petition to protect Talladega National Forest from from fracking.

CO (Swing State). Top independent state pollster: “We’re not looking at a guy who’s at 52 percent approval ratings…. [T]he level of anxiety is just about as high here as any place else.” Boulder County Commission voted to place a one-year ban oil and gas development last month. Longmont already voted against more stringent regulations. (MR; Longmont correction MR)

FL (Swing State). Obama’s campaign is leafleting the Miami neighborhood near Dade Behring plant ultimately closed on Bain’s watch. Ouch.

ID. Dynamis application for a waste to energy plant at the Ada landfill looks like it is quickly evolving into a regional tire disposal plant; within 5 years “tipping fees” [the revenue] at the dump will go to Dynamis.

IA (Swing State). Obama calls Romney’s claims that his policies have increased debt, in his words,“a cowpie of distortions.”

IL. Patrick Fitzgerald successor: “It’s very hard to find somebody that you would really have confidence has no connections with the political class.” (Peter Fitzgerald, no relation, R who nominated Fitzgerald.

GA. The fire was the second this week at an OB-GYN office in metro Atlanta. ”

NB. “[Thompson v. Heineman] is aimed at invalidating LB 1161, which set up rules for siting pipelines. The suit contends the legislation was written specifically to help a single company, Trans Canada, contrary to the Nebraska state constitution.”

OH (Swing state). New oil and gas law requires improved well sampling (by producers) but does not permit local siting regulation through zoning.

WI (swing state). Walker currently stands a very good chance of surviving the recall. “You do not hear rank and file activists saying…‘Where’s Obama?’” A loss would be “disheartening to Democrats.” Assuming they wanted to win, yes. Long and excellent reportage in The Times on the WI recall. There are heroic figures, including Lori Compas who, against all odds, forced a recall election against the R Senate leader, and Mike Wiggins of the Lake Superior Chippewa. Sadly, the only heroic party regular is Dale Schultz (R), who cast the deciding vote against Walker’s plan to despoil the northern WI with an iron mine. Lori Compas: “He had absolute power and he used it to hurt us.” There’s a lot of that going around.

Green Party. Dr. Jill Stein wins PA Green Party presidential caucus.

Inside Baseball. Mutually incommensurate rules of thumb on polling: Paul Begala: “When the ‘right direction’ number creeps up close to 50 percent, the incumbent is going to win. At this writing, that all-important indicator is a middling 31 percent.” Crystal Ball Senior Columnist Alan Abramowitz Larry Sabato: “[T]here is strong evidence that an incumbent president’s approval rating, even several months before Election Day, has a strong relationship to the eventual outcome of the election.” CJR’s Brian E. Crowley: “Trend results are more meaningful and more likely to be accurate.” Pierce: “Whoever said this before was right — we don’t need a third party, we need a second one.”

Romney. Nooners interview: “I asked Mr. Romney the difference between the America he saw in 2008 and the one he sees now. “A much higher degree of anxiety today. People much less confident in the security of their job, less confident in the prospects for their children.” Rove’s winning formula: McCain + Indiana, North Carolina and Virginia, + Florida and Ohio + 1 more. Econospeak: “I could almost vote for a Republican who decided to both promise a more vigorous return to full employment and put forth a credible plan to get there.”

Obama. “[I]n April the Obama for America campaign placed more than 30 times as many digital ads as Romney’s equivalent operation.” “The Obama campaign’s “experiment-informed programs” [EIP] are designed to track the impact of campaign messages as voters process them in the real world [using] randomized, controlled experiments [and] microtargeting statistical models that can calculate the probability a voter will hold a particular view based on hundreds of variables.” Even so, they’re still sending me spam. “[T]he tweets [Obama] answered were all timestamped much earlier than his initial personal tweet… The questions were, then, not spontaneous, but rather likely cherry-picked by staff hours before, giving Obama ample time to prepare answers.” Shocker.

Booker/Bain flap. Obama meets with Senators: “[Bain]“is sensitive with some Democrats because they could be viewed as critiques of private equity, a source of campaign contributions for both Obama and congressional Democrats.”

* 106 days ’til the Democratic National Convention ends with bread and water on the floor of the Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC. 106 AD: Decebalus, King of Dacia (87–106) commits suicide, later being immortalized on Trajan’s Column.

A la prochaine fois!

 

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54 comments

  1. skippy

    RF: Australia Approves Migrant Workers for Mining Projects CNBC

    …………..

    Monckton’s push for an Australia Fox News ABC (aussie one)

    Back in July last year in a boardroom of a western Australian free-market think tank, the extrovert British climate change sceptic Lord Christopher Monckton was holding court.

    The topic for discussion? How to better capture the Australian media to help push a right-wing, free-market and climate sceptic agenda.

    At the time, Lord Monckton was in Australia at the behest of a mining association to deliver a series of talks on climate change and spread his conspiracy theories that human-caused climate change is a left-wing plot to bring down the West.

    At one point during the tour, Monckton told a boisterous partisan crowd:

    “So to the bogus scientists who have produced the bogus science that invented this bogus scare I say, we are coming after you. We are going to prosecute you, and we are going to lock you up.”

    Hosting the meeting was the Mannkal Economic Education Foundation, a group chaired by mining “Hall of Fame” member Ron Manners to promote free-market ideals and low government intervention.

    Manners is also a member of Gina Rinehart’s lobby group ANDEV, which has been joined by the Institute for Public Affairs to lobby for a separate low-tax low regulation economic zone for the north of Australia to make mining projects easier to develop.

    It would be safe to presume, given Manner’s background in mining and the make-up of his staff, that this aim to lower government intervention would include any regulations and taxes on mining.

    As far as its position on climate change goes, Mannkal’s website only appears to promote sceptical and largely debunked views on climate science, with links to many climate change denial websites which form part of a global network.

    The Lord Monckton gathering, posted on YouTube, had all the air of a strategy meeting.

    “Is there an Australian version of Fox News?… No,” Monckton told the gathered group, which included Manners himself.

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/3807130.html

    Skippy…. Their firing Australian miners, they have shut down mines – hole towns operating for over 25 years on the premise of facilitating the mining industry. This is neoliberal agenda writ large!

    1. Aquifer

      Why hire locals when you can import slave labor – hey, if it “worked” for America, why not Australia?

    2. dcblogger

      The topic for discussion? How to better capture the Australian media to help push a right-wing, free-market and climate sceptic agenda.

      Because the Murdoch media is not right wing enough???

    3. gordon

      It’s not exactly popular, but I doubt whether the outrage by a few “lefty” pollies (who are doing really well out of the status quo) and successful unionists in good suits actually means much. The WA iron mining areas are remote, have few voters and to all intents and purposes have become Special Economic Zones managed by the mining companies. Besides, after the miners successfully forced the Govt. to back down on the mining tax, they can do whatever they want. The Govt. is totally scared of them.

      http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-05-26/unions-angry-at-move-to-allow-foreign-workers-in-mine/4034758

      Prime Minister Gillard’s response is just to say that she was out of the country at the time and nobody told her. Old Adolf didn’t know anything about the Final Solution, either.

  2. financial matters

    Is the Euro Ending or Beginning? Project Syndicate

    “”Now, however, what did not happen through smooth evolution has started to happen through crisis. Since 2009, the Europeans have already put in place the crisis-management and resolution apparatus that they initially refused even to discuss. Simultaneously, governments, under merciless pressure from the bond markets, are introducing labor- and product-market reforms that they deemed politically inconceivable only a few quarters ago.”"

    Naomi Klein’s ‘The Shock Doctrine, The Rise of Disaster Capitalism’ comes to mind. Financial institutions are experts at exploiting these sort of crises on the backs of workers/taxpayers. Their goal is that even unreasonable and fraudulent debt needs to be paid back no matter the social cost.

    1. Jim

      Has anybody written a book called
      “The Rise of Disaster Sociology?”

      You foment race riots in order to institute draconian measures to promote “tolerance.”

      The closest that I can figure would be

      “None Dare Call It Conspiracy”

      also, “The Dispossessed Majority”

  3. Jim Haygood

    From the Times-Titanic:

    Mass money emigration is now taking place in Greece, where, under euro zone rules, it would be illegal to impose capital controls.

    Company treasurers tend to … withdraw money more quickly when they perceive a bank might be troubled than individual depositors do. In Greece, for example, corporate deposits have been fleeing much faster — by 27 percent over the last 12 months, compared to 15 percent for consumer deposits.

    By this measure, the professional money is fleeing Spain, too, at a much faster pace compared with consumer funds. The country’s 721 billion euros in individual deposits is down only 1.4 percent for the year. But corporate deposits have exited at a rate of 14 percent, shrinking to 190 billion euros during that period, according to Goldman Sachs.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/25/business/global/in-spain-bank-transfers-reflect-broader-fears.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&hp

    Oof … yikes! An analogy could be made to the pre-FDIC United States during 1929-33. All 48 states had a common currency, the dollar. But rural banks were failing at a higher rate than urban ones. A depositor in Indiana or Arkansas would have found greater safety by transferring his funds to a bank in New York.

    In a eurozone with a common currency and free capital movement, but with deposit insurance provided at the national level, it makes eminent sense to move euro deposits from the periphery to the core. This perverse incentive, which drains the weak to bolster the strong, is one of several structural defects in the design of the euro.

    Goethe saw this all coming in 1797, in his poem-fable Der Zauberlehrling (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice). The utopian fantasy of an elastic common fiat currency has turned into a malevolent magic broom, manically sweeping away weak banking regimes because no one knows how to stop it.

    The notion that fiat currency outperforms a gold standard is, to put it charitably, unproven.

    1. F. Beard

      The notion that fiat currency outperforms a gold standard is, to put it charitably, unproven. Jim Haygood

      Inexpensive fiat is the ONLY ethical money form for government debts – taxes and fees.

      You’re being a fascist by promoting a gold standard.

      England, btw, the creator of the gold standard, was the first to recover from the Great Depression by abandoning it.

      Step away from the Golden Calf, I suggest.

  4. Jim

    Keep beating the minority reparations,
    affirmatve action
    gay marriage tom tom and pretty soon you will have flushed almost all of the White Working Class out of the Democatic Party.

    1. Asymmetric Bob

      Speaking of the farcical triumph of identity politics over Labor, Leftist politics, check out this article.

      Fetisheers taking the side of Hyatt owners and management against underpaid, mistreated hotel workers who are simply asking to be compensated for things like having to get down on their hands and knees to clean floors, rather than being allowed to use long-handled mops:

      http://www.buzzfeed.com/annanorth/fetisheers-take-on-union-in-chicago

      1. Lambert Strether

        Well, I’ve got some sympathy for the fetisheers; after all, they’re not rentiers or banksters, so contracts and the rule of law apply to them. And apparently there’s a $700K penalty for breaking the contract with Hyatt. That said, (a) how did the contract get signed with a union-busting hotel chain in the first place, and (b) why isn’t the discussion how to get out of the contract and what chain to go with next?

        1. Clairet

          Funny how Lil Penny, the finance chairwoman of B.O.’s first campaign who owns most of the Hyatt chain doesn’t have to worry about the illegals that she employs being raided by Immigration.

  5. jsmith

    Regarding Egyptian elections:

    ALL of the candidates are stooges for the military junta.

    These elections are shams, the results of which are pre-ordained: the military junta will keep control of Egypt and whichever stooge is put into place will be heralded as some sort of victory for democracy.

    http://www.wsws.org/articles/2012/may2012/egyp-m25.shtml

    Although some may think it too early to call, I believe that SYRIZA and Tsipras are going to sell-out the Greek people – quelle surprise – and continue with “austerizing” the people in one way – the German version – or another – the American flavor.

    Strenge Macht Frei

    http://www.wsws.org/articles/2012/may2012/gree-m25.shtml

  6. Aquifer

    Sigh – how ignominious (not to mention unhealthy) from the Arctic floes to a chlorinated pool – is this to be the fate of polar bears?

    1. jsmith

      Bolton? This guy’s better than Bolton!

      Not only is he a foaming at the mouth Arab-hating Zionist, he worked for Martin Indyk, 2-time ambassador to Israel, who was the only ambassador to ever have his security clearance revoked by the U.S.

      http://articles.cnn.com/2000-09-23/world/israel.ambassador_1_security-clearance-ambassador-indyk-martin-indyk?_s=PM:WORLD

      But I’m sure it was all just another Israeli misunderstanding, right?

      Oops.

      With shining examples of patriotism like Feltman and Indyk no wonder the world hates us for our freedom!

  7. Aquifer

    Cuomo is a schmuck, in the Clinton Obama vein minus the “charm”. I do think he will try in ’16 and i do think he helped grease Schneiderman’s capitulation for Obama.

    Where and how Hillary will fit in will be interesting – Game of Thrones, or should i say Game of Clones – the ongoing saga of life in the duopoly …

    1. Aquifer

      As far as turning Labor against him, doubt it – NY labor, IMO, is still a lesser evil bunch – if they oppose Cuomo it would still only be in favor of another crummy Dem ….

      The day Labor figures out the Greens are much more in their corner – THAT will be a tipping point. But Cuomo, like the rest, is still confidant that labor feels it has nowhere else to go and he can placate them with a few crumbs here and there. Hey, it’s worked for decades, why shouldn’t it keep working … …

  8. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Incapable of enjoying life – that’s the basic problem of Homo Not-So-Sapiens Not-So-Sapiens, according to numerous polls of non-human animals and plants.

  9. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Romney holds advantages among financially struggling white voters.

    That is the same demographics most financial blogs are after.

    1. Eureka Springs

      Oh gawd, soon to be called the Catholics, the Reagan Democrats, theIndependents, oooooh the Centrists.

      Buzzwords of the repetitious week / weak, coming soon. Anything but the issues!

  10. RanDomino

    “Rio Issues Land Titles To Slum Residents”

    It’s a trap!

    “Homeowners have quickly discovered that their land can be used as collateral for loans”

    “foreigners and investors attracted by the incomparable ocean views and by the privileged neighborhoods surrounding the shantytown have also started snapping up land”

    “A boutique hotel with a rooftop pool … is under construction in the community where six months ago drug dealers conducted business with heavy weaponry”

    Of course- why would the police actually care about smashing drug dealers or making these neighborhoods safe for the residents? It looks like gentrification was the name of the game from the start.

    1. Walter Wit Man

      Seems like a pattern for the Americas. Was reading recently about Jamaican history (doing Bob Marley perp research) and the CIA apparently ratcheted up involvement in the 60s in Jamaica by doing ‘Operation Shanty Town’ and razing Rastafari neighborhoods (and it’s *odd* that one of the first Jamaican songs to gain international appeal was the 67 song, “007 Shanty Town” which also contains a reference to Ocean 11).

      The socialist prime minister and party of this era did land reforms giving poor Jamaicans more control, but then the CIA-backed JLA party razed Rasta slums and build their own new slums as a gift to the people. This allowed people like “Jim Brown” to run drugs to America and gave rise to the Jamaican Shower Posse in the U.S. Most likely the CIA was using the Jamaican Shower Posse and the JLA in Jamaica, including Jim Brown, to run drugs and launder money and control the region.

      In the 70s the rival JLA party and the PNP party had rival public housing projects, or slums, etc., that they ruled. the politics of housing seemed to be important in this era.

      Haiti appears to have a similar history and a focus on land reform and housing.

      Be interesting to compare Chavez’s land reforms in Venezuela with these other policies.

      1. Walter Wit Man

        Desmond Decker singing “007 (Shanty Town)”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFIqxnSo-gQ

        Here’s Sammy Davis Jr. signing “E-0 11″, in Ocean’s 11 in front of some 007 looking guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5TiTmeJP2Y

        Who knows if these songs mean anything . . . just find the connections interesting. Of course Sammy and the Rat Pack were accused of having mob connections and the movie came out in 1960, plus Ian Flemming lived on Jamaica and the series were popular in the 60s.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/13/travel/13iht-trjam.1.17747154.html?pagewanted=all

  11. Hugh

    “Debt crisis: Germany holds a gun to Greece’s head”

    Tomorrow’s headline:

    “Debt crisis: Greece holds a gun to Germany’s head ”

    Rinse, repeat.

    “Lawmaker calls for peace talks between deceased Arafat, comatose Sharon”

    While an illustration of stupidity in the literal sense, metaphorically this is where American policy with its call for a “two state” solution is, and it is just as stupid, just not as obvious.

    Andrew Cuomo is a mean, petty neoliberal. This did not prevent him from rising to the top of state politics in New York. If he is burning his bridges instate, maybe he is looking to the Obama Administration for his next gig. Isn’t Holder likely to leave if there is an Obama second term?

    Efforts like those in Texas are all about keeping the 99% dumb, confused, and at war with itself.

    “Is the Euro Ending or Beginning?” Yes [rimshot]

  12. Hugh

    “Whoever said this before was right — we don’t need a third party, we need a second one.”

    I was calling for the creation of a new party before the 2008 election. In July 2009, I wrote about the need for a “first” party, one that would represent what has come to be known as the 99%.

    http://seminal.firedoglake.com/diary/6783

    1. Aquifer

      So Hugh – as we do have other parties – where are you on the ones out there? Specifically i am curious as to what you think of the Greens re platform/candidates …..

      1. Hugh

        Personally, I think OWS, the Green party, even the Tea party are precursors, bits and pieces of what is needed. Change will come when there is a mass movement with a comprehensive, easily understood, and widely accepted agenda. It will create its own party to further its goals, and it will go after all offices at all levels.

        The agenda I would suggest has both a positive and a negative side.

        The Positive would be a second New Deal, the basics for a good life: For all citizens
        A Good Job
        Good Housing
        Safe Food
        Good Healthcare
        Good Education
        Good Retirement
        Respect for the law, respect for each other

        The Negative side would be the dismantling of the kleptocracy:
        Prosecute the financial criminals
        End extreme wealth inequality
        End corporate personhood
        End the wars
        End the empire
        End the perks of the elites

        We must pursue the negative agenda but we must never take our eyes off the prize of a fairer, juster, freer society embodied in the positive agenda.

        1. Aquifer

          Hugh,

          Excellent agenda – sounds pretty much like the Green platform and OWS requirements for the 99%, which is what makes me think they fit together – a party that needs more members and a constituency that needs political representation, even if it doesn’t quite realize it yet …

    1. F. Beard

      We can expect to see more partial solutions to the banking problem by those who wish to save banking from itself.

      Few are willing to kill banking even though it is inherently crooked.

    2. MLS

      I 100% agree with the sentiment that prop-trading institutions should not receive taxpayer subsidies like FDIC insurance. The problem is that removing FDIC coverage won’t change the TBTF behavior much because it isn’t credible – if one of those firms is about to go under and take the system down with it, everyone expects the government will step in.

      This problem was borne in large part, IMO, when Solomon Brothers became the first investment bank to go public. Prior, the Wall Street firms were private partnerships, which meant that losses by the firm were felt directly by each of the partners since it was THEIR money collectively. As public companies, they were now gambling with shareholder money which sets up the ideal scenario for bankers and traders: keep the gains while someone else eats the losses.

      You can’t put that genie back in the bottle, but the way to change behavior is to put the traders and bankers back on the hook for losses, one way is through clawbacks that can reach back several years. Then I think you’ll start to see a different attitude about risk-taking at these firms.

    1. Rex

      “We tried to look for it, but the sunlight was just too blinding.”

      Nice. Inverse of the Drunk/Lampost searching, but no less stupid.

  13. Susan the other

    StopFraud.gov. Are you kidding me? What a disgusting whitewash. The blatant fraud of all the securitizers of MBS is a fact. The details are there for all to see. The OWS Alternative Banking letter lays most of it out in a page or two. And our Federal “Government” (must put it in parens because government implies the rule of law is enforced) sets up a see-no-evil website to nab small fry? Where is the hotline for clouded titles? Where is the hotline for forged notes? Where is the hotline for blatant misrepresentation in pure self interest? For bankrolling the whole scam with digital money? StopFraud.com doesn’t have a damn thing to do with the fraud we all want prosecuted. It’s a red herring. With a rotten head.

    1. Lambert Strether

      They’ve got a website with a logo, but no phone or office.

      So, “creative class welfare” — did “Julia” get the contract? — and no enforcement.

      I call that a win-win!

    2. Susan the other

      And speaking of the verboten subject, securitization fraud, Housing Wire’s report @ Volcker testifying at the Senate Banking Committee on the subject got almost no traction. Gosh how strange. He called for an end to “modern securitization.” What a phrase. But at least he stated it and claimed it had to go because it was nothing more than speculation by banks. (An illegal act.) Somehow the crime gets lost in the words “proprietary trading” as usual. That term should be banned as well because the banksters’ proprietary traders are using it to speculate on debt, which is nothing more than a classic ponzi.

      Besides which they even faked the actual securitizations. I mean, for god’s sake… And Senator Corker (?) worried that to ban “modern securitization” would end mortgage bond trading, i.e. put an end to the housing market as we know it. Funny. All that risk hedging created a risk frankenstein.

      1. Susan the other

        Dear Dr. Bowdler, please subsitute any words you find offensive. But try not to change the tone of my frustration. Sincerely, Susan

      2. Aquifer

        Ah yes, the strategy of risk hedging created all the risk they were hedging against …. golly gee, who’da ever thunk ..

  14. Susan the other

    Der Spiegel was amusing on Germans having a defective joy gene. I suspect this is not a modern phenomenon. The Germans coined the word Schadenfreude, after all. They long since recognized that two-headed emotion.

    1. Aquifer

      Having a fair amount of German blood, i have noticed the nose to the grindstone routine does tend to flatten ones affect …

  15. F. Beard

    re Australia Approves Migrant Workers for Mining Projects CNBC:

    If Australia had had ethical money creation, then the Aussies would likely cheer foreign workers since less expensive foreign labor would profit them all.

    But instead, we have the shameful spectacle of whites resenting foreigners for taking away their dubious privilege of being wage slaves to the bankers.

    That Occam’s Razor; it be sharp I tell ya!

  16. Valissa

    In an impressive display of bipartisanship… Senators seek to name bison ‘national mammal’ http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/story/2012-05-25/bison-national-mammal/55208874/1

    Home, home on the range http://www.cartoonstock.com/lowres/shl080416l.jpg

    A bison in winter http://www.ittybittyurl.com/dqx

    The state of bison research http://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/185_cartoon_bison.jpg

    Awwwww…. http://cache0.bigcartel.com/product_images/56340293/hugs600x600.png

  17. Rex

    “America: Slouching Towards Third World Status”

    Slouching? Harumpf! Not America; we are charging headlong into the breach of our blockheadedness and bigoted inanity. We do not slouch, we dive with enthusiasm and determination.

    Slouching, indeed. Such a reaction would require an awareness of our imminent demise and we are much too commited to our mythology to acknowledge incovenient and unpleasant realities.

    Go team go! — Sinking down, sinking down, waaaaay down! Do not frown, do not frown, on the waaaaay down.

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