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Links 6/10/12

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‘Depraved’ sex acts by penguins shocked polar explorer BBC

THE VENUS TRANSIT AND HUNTING FOR ALIEN WORLDS Discovery

Risky Rise of the Good-Grade Pill New York Times. It’s taken this long for the Grey Lady to notice? New York Magazine ran a cover story on this years, maybe even a full decade ago.

Type 1 Diabetes Rate Rises Among U.S. Youth Wall Street Journal

Researcher: Interdependencies could lead to cloud ‘meltdowns’ NetworkWorld

The Hypocrisy of “Clean Coal” Heather Taylor-Miesle, Firedoglake

I’ll Have Another Retirement Ceremony: Injured Horse Won’t Lead Post Parade At Belmont Huffington Post. Yeah, right. He might be injured, but I’m cynical enough to suspect he just wasn’t training that well and was “retired” to maximize his stud value.

Intimidation Tactics? Inside Higher Ed. A peek into the medical-educational complex.

Phishing is So Easy Even Hamsters Do It Global Economic Intersection

Bundesbank: the eurozone’s secret dictator Telegraph

My Self-Esteem A Mess Is Refrain For Spain’s Unemployed Bloomberg

Subprime college educations George Will, Washington Post. Major “it’s all the government’s fault” alert. And you can see where this is going: it sets up the argument that fewer people should be getting a college education. Narrowly probably true, except secondary education is so awful that colleges seem to do a fair bit of making up for gaps in high school training.

Did Republicans deliberately crash the US economy? Guardian. Wow, this reads like desperate Dem PR. And as Chuck L points out: “Even if there is something to this thesis, they had considerable help from the Democrats themselves.”

FineGaffeGate! Beat the Press

Ben Bernanke’s Office Phone Number Given Out at Netroots Nation Keynote Dave Dayen (Carol B)

Goldman Sachs Hires Single Morally Decent Human Being To Work In Separate, Enclosed Cubicle Onion

How Banks Could Return the Favor New York Times

North Las Vegas Crisis Shows Fragility Of Nevada Economy Bloomberg

Eric Schneiderman’s Office Spars With Foreclosure Activist, Blogger Zach Carter, Huffington Post

Foreclosure Fraud: The Most Dangerous Panel in the World Marcy Wheeler

Number of the Week: Corporations Not Hoarding Cash WSJ Real Time Economics

Is Globalization Good for America’s Middle Class? Part 1 Rdan, Angry Bear

Antidote du jour:

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94 comments

    1. spooz

      Quote from NYT:
      “While these medicines tend to calm people with A.D.H.D., those without the disorder find that just one pill can jolt them with the energy and focus to push through all-night homework binges and stay awake during exams afterward.”

      I guess I shouldn’t be surprised to see the “paradoxical effect” described as a fact in the New York Times, considering they are probably aligned with the interests of Big Pharma. Anybody who reviews the research will know that amphetamines (or as Big Pharma would prefer to call them, “stimulants”) effect everybody the same way. Another case of Big Pharma finding an effect and creating a disease model.

      1. F. Beard

        Anybody who reviews the research will know that amphetamines (or as Big Pharma would prefer to call them, “stimulants”) effect everybody the same way. spooz

        Disagree. I GREATLY enjoy amphetamines. Without them I can’t hear myself think and my concentration and patience are very short. Furthermore, they help me to sleep!

        I’ve been off them for about 4 years and in some ways my life is better but I miss the drive and motivation.

        Btw, I’ve read that the US has a disproportionate percentage of ADHD sufferers because we are a nation of self-selected immigrants.

        1. spooz

          I have enjoyed amphetamines, too much in my youth, with serious side effects when I weaned myself off. I too was more alert, efficient and had energy to burn. That effect wears off and you have to increase dosage to get the same effect, and eventually the side effects, mood swings when having withdrawal symptoms, panic attacks, psychosis, etc. are much worse than any imagined “disorder” that you were supposed to be treating.
          In any case, they effect everybody the same way, in fact I can attest I have no disorder and they increased my performance. The “paradoxical effect” is not paradoxical at all. Everybody has the same effect.

          1. F. Beard

            No, not the same effect for everyone. How can you possibly say that? No drug has the same effect on everyone.

            Some people, are naturally up and some are naturally down. Most people in my experience wish to calm down. Speed is NOT their drug of choice. Conversely, I don’t enjoy downers or alcohol that much.

            Now that I am retired, I can do without medication but if I ever had to work again it would be a different story.

          2. Up the Ante

            And most “paradoxical” of all is the fact that emotions are the realy driver, most especially when assisted by the sincere intent to not dumbdown the world around ourselves for petty self-gain. That aspect of realization is of course easily suppressed by broadscale efforts to deny that the dumbing down has been the major effort in too many ways, and by efforts to obscure the true perpetrators of the dumbing, pigs various feeding at the trough.

            And the opposite of dumbing down is ? is the obvious other side of the coin.

        2. skippy

          You should look into the effect it has on air force pilots and FF problems, the fighting in the pacific during WWII and ensuing creation of hells angels. Ohh and leaders that used this stuff.

          This is you beardo:

          http://www.methproject.org/answers/what-does-meth-do-to-your-brain.html#Brain-Damage

          Skippy… years of studying the bible on meth, speed kills beardo, you are heavy modified. BTW what have you used as a substitute for the meth? Was the meth prescription or of other origin.

          1. F. Beard

            It was Dexedrine and it was by prescription.

            And though meth may kill, my doctor assured me that some people have taken Dexedrine for 60 years without ill-effect.

            As for heavily modified, yeah, that was the point.

            But I have to admit that sober Bible reading has done me a lot more good than drugs ever did. Sill, if I had not had all the drugs I ever wanted, I would never have discovered their limitations.

          2. skippy

            JFYI Beardo,

            The drugs are just to stabilize you, whilst you engage in therapy, like a crutch to walk around. Its not a cure and those that think they have been cured, are probably more deluded than when they started off.

            Skippy… Could not think with out it. That’s a clue beardo, there’s no such thing as a smart pill. False positives thingy.

          3. Up the Ante

            I’m sure the recipients of psycho friendly fire incidents believe those who fired upon them were more “efficient”, as well.

          4. F. Beard

            The drugs are just to stabilize you, whilst you engage in therapy, skippy

            And that’s what I used them for – long, thoughtful walks and Bible reading.

          5. skippy

            @Up the Ante,

            I’m reminded of an anti cocaine ad in California circa late 80s. A small white room with no windows, young budding well dressed proto executive walking in circles. Talking out loud… I do cocaine…. so I can make more money… so I can buy more cocaine… too make more money… with increasing speed every time he repeats the litany… till hes a gone warp speed.

            Skippy… read “Less than Zero” when I was knee deep in the actual backdrop… sigh.

          6. skippy

            The drugs are just to stabilize you, whilst you engage in therapy, skippy

            And that’s what I used them for – long, thoughtful walks and Bible reading… beardo.

            Skip here… that’s not a therapy like CBT et al, its not an honest assessment. More like repetitive mental reinforcement or illusions of competence.

            Here have a read: Metacognitive strategies in student learning: Do students practise retrieval when they study
            on their own?

            http://duke.edu/~ab259/pubs/KarpickeButler%26Roediger%282009%29.pdf

            Also…

            J. H. Flavell first used the word “metacognition”.[5] He describes it in these words:

            Metacognition refers to one’s knowledge concerning one’s own cognitive processes or anything related to them, e.g., the learning-relevant properties of information or data. For example, I am engaging in metacognition if I notice that I am having more trouble learning A than B; if it strikes me that I should double check C before accepting it as fact.
            —J. H. Flavell (1976, p. 232).

            A. Demetriou, in his theory, one of the neo-Piagetian theories of cognitive development, used the term hypercognition to refer to self-monitoring, self-representation, and self-regulation processes, which are regarded as integral components of the human mind.[6] Moreover, with his colleagues, he showed that these processes participate in general intelligence, together with processing efficiency and reasoning, which have traditionally been considered to compose fluid intelligence.[7]

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metacognition

            AND

            Fluid and crystallized intelligence.

            In psychology, fluid and crystallized intelligence (abbreviated Gf and Gc, respectively) are factors of general intelligence originally identified by Raymond Cattell.[1] Concepts of fluid and crystallized intelligence were further developed by John L. Horn, the primary student of Raymond Cattell.

            Fluid intelligence or fluid reasoning is the capacity to think logically and solve problems in novel situations, independent of acquired knowledge. It is the ability to analyze novel problems, identify patterns and relationships that underpin these problems and the extrapolation of these using logic. It is necessary for all logical problem solving, especially scientific, mathematical and technical problem solving. Fluid reasoning includes inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning.

            Crystallized intelligence is the ability to use skills, knowledge, and experience. It should not be equated with memory or knowledge, but it does rely on accessing information from long-term memory.

            Crystallized intelligence is one’s lifetime or intellectual achievement, as demonstrated largely through one’s vocabulary and general knowledge. This improves somewhat with age, as experiences tend to expand one’s knowledge.

            The terms are somewhat misleading because one is not a “crystallized” form of the other. Rather, they are believed to be separate neural and mental systems. Crystallized intelligence is indicated by a person’s depth and breadth of general knowledge, vocabulary, and the ability to reason using words and numbers. It is the product of educational and cultural experience in interaction with fluid intelligence.

            Fluid and crystallized intelligence are thus correlated with each other, and most IQ tests attempt to measure both varieties. For example, the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) measures fluid intelligence on the performance scale and crystallized intelligence on the verbal scale. The overall IQ score is based on a combination of these two scales.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluid_intelligence

            Skippy… Therapy is about personal honesty, as most people are woeful about being honest, with – them – selves… eh.

          7. F. Beard

            No thanks. I’ll just stick with the Bible. I’ll never have peace of mind otherwise. And if the Bible contradicts itself as you say it does then it should all net to zero, no? For no harm done?

            We shall not cease from exploration
            And the end of all our exploring
            Will be to arrive where we started
            And know the place for the first time.
            T.S. Eliot — “Little Gidding”

          8. skippy

            “I’ll just stick with the Bible. I’ll never have peace of mind otherwise.”… beardo.

            The attempt to resolve anxiety issues with mental palliatives, like the bible, never resolve the underlining fear[s. Kicking the can till death.

            Kinda like the bailouts with the endless papering over of the problem, yet the fear is always there, just camouflaged to those with out the optics or skill to discern the deception. The rest are enablers of various sorts and culpability, perpetrating the deception for some sort of gain.

            Skippy… Fear being the lack of control over ones environment… eh. Peace of mind is a deception beardo, it blinds ones mind, to factual reality.

            And if the Bible contradicts itself as you say it does then it should all net to zero, no? For no harm done?… beardo… Willful Ignorance… too the cliffs!!!!

        3. spooz

          If you review the literature you will find that all children, adhd or not, respond to amphetamines the same way, and that in fact there is no paradoxical effect. Amphetamines & ritalin (which is more like cocaine than methamphetamine) make it easier for everyone to concentrate, especially on boring tasks. The side effects and dismal long term outcomes, where many will end up with anxiety symptoms which will win them a bipolar diagnosis and another fun with chemistry experiment on their brains, make it a bad decision for most and a crime against children.

          1. ambrit

            Dear spooz;
            Yes indeed a “..crime against children.” Also a crime in the making against our next generation, the one that is supposed to help us all live decently into our technologically lengenthened old ages! It made me think of the scene near the end of Bergmans’ “The Serpents Egg” where the proto-Reich scientist, knowing the police are about to break in and arrest them all, takes the cyanide capsule and then stares into the mirror to observe the effects of the drug.
            I’ve encountered a fair number of speed freaks and do attest that the end result was never good. Take very good care of what’s left of your health Beard!

          2. ctcnt

            I will agree with this. I have some personal experience with these chemicals as well, but I’ve been ‘free’ of them for about 10 years now.

            I’ve known at least 5 people that were on either ritalin or adderol from a very young age. One was a good friend for years until his drug problems(varied) got so bad that he ended up in prison. His brother was on them, too, but I dont know what happened with him. Another couple were girlfriends, one especially serious-both were methamphetamine(ice) smokers for years and I’ve lost track of them now, though I know they still live. They were/are(according to an acquaintance) very attractive women with none of the cliched billboard problems like bad skin and teeth-that mostly results from low-grade speed-full of contaminants from the manufacturing process and poor hygiene/eating habits. Iow, functional/though erratic drug addicts…I’m sure the looks helped smooth over some of that erratic behavior. I know for a fact though that my ex got into oxycontin as a substitute/solution. Another was a friend of a friend who ended getting into heroin and oxycontin-she is ‘clean’ now I think.

            But the moral of all that is that those people were all exposed to either ritalin or adderol between the ages of 5-8. These drugs give one a ‘taste’ of enhanced living and that is addictive to say the least! Without the stuff most of these people become depressed and begin behaving even more self-destructively.

            Regarding the article: I think The NYtimes has come up with an article like this every six months for the last 10 years… Bourgeois hand-wringing that always fails to call a spade a spade… it’s the fucking drug companies and doctors… with a little help from ‘educators’ and parents who want easy answers… as mentioned a million times here and elsewhere, the ‘consumer’ mentality trumps all.

    1. J. Sterling

      Amen. Whenever anyone proposes one of those elaborate “emissions” monitoring schemes, where everyone has to be tracked to ensure they’re not “emitting” too much carbon, ask why we don’t just have a satellite camera on an oil or coal field, and whenever a company sets up a mine or well in that field, say “hey, cut that out!”

      Emissions is a bogus frame. There is no substitute for just leaving the stuff in the ground.

  1. Middle Seaman

    RE: George Will

    College education for the majority of high school graduates worked extremely well for the US until about 12 years ago. Bush and Obama failings don’t call for a change in education. They call for education/employment centered policy by the government.

    The rightwing, by and large, is in a major drive to return us to pre-Civil War times. Namely, they thrive to return to some form of labor slavery, which obviously is threatened by education.

    The rightwing also suffers from intellectual deficit that turns colleges into centrist left bastions. They resent that and have worked long and hard to destroy the best college system in the world.

    1. bmeisen

      If tuition went up 440% because the gov’t, soft-headedly trying to get more citizens educated, increased subsidies, then the tuition increases must have followed legislative acts. Coincidently, gov’t must have increased subsidies by – let’s be conservative – a couple hundred percent if tuition went up 440%.

      I prefer another account: State governments were driven by Prop 13-type campaigns away from higher ed. The country’s acclaimed hybrid public/private system deteriorated into a market for educational services in which consumers, supported generously by the banking community, freely exercised their personal choice by selecting from among a breathtaking assortment of products. In this environment elite institutions, which were overwhelmingly private, had market power and they began to exercise it. Their tuitions went up and, competing for quality students, the Holy Grail of individual institutions, public institutions were in trouble. Increasing the pressure, premium institutions used their USPs to great effect.

      The premium price rose to its current level – about 200k for a BA. Recognizing that further increases in their premium prices would invite more political criticism than the financial return would justify, the elite institutions have adopted a “hold” position.

      George Will can hardly get his head out of his navel. The notion that education of any kind is primarily a personal choice and can be efficiently distributed by a market is deeply anti-social. That a POTUS sends his kids to a private school is a scandal. Jay-Z and Beyonce just had a kid I heard. What kind of school will he/she attend?

      1. Carla

        “That a POTUS sends his kids to a private school is a scandal.”

        I’m the last person to defend Obama on anything, but for heaven’s sake, who was the last President to send his children to public school?

        There are so MANY legitimate reasons to criticize this President. That one seems to me like a cheap shot.

        1. bmeisen

          Education is arguably the highest public good. Without it there is little justice. The highest public servant can be expected to do more than rhetorically support the highest public good. DC public schools may indeed be uniformly awful. Does a government, DC or federal, provide a public school for the children of prominent public servants? It is a population that merits a-normal treatment. Glad we agree that there is a lot to criticize Obama for. It’s interesting that the Obama’s prefered schooling solution for their children was announced about the same time as his choice of Geithner and Summers, i.e. before Xmas 2008. We needed little else to predict his general trajectory.

          1. Carla

            I repeat: attack President Obama on his hundreds or thousands of other failings as President.

            BTW, bmeisen, when you say the Obamas made a decision about their children’s education, there is no apostrophe in “the Obamas.” If you refer to the Obamas’ decision, then the apostrophe is placed as in this sentence.

            So go ahead and be a snob about education, public or otherwise.

            I would damn Obama about the NDAA first, then Obamacare, then his appointments including prominently Geithner, and his utter dishonesty regarding mortgage fraud, the banking mafia, and many other things. For heaven’s sake, as far as I’m concerned, damn the man to Hell, he’s a criminal, but leave his kids and their schooling out of it.

  2. dearieme

    “Intimidation Tactics?”: well of course. The same sort of Intimidation Tactics probably explain why not just futile or harmful mass screening by PSA test still makes lots of people a large income, but also mass screening by mammography, widespread prescription of statins to the non-symptomatic, or subservience to the man-made Global Warming piffle. It ain’t just bankers who’re a gang of crooks.

    1. JohnL

      I understand who is making a lot of money off PSA testing, mammography, and statins, but in the case of global warming? Meanwhile those bastions of tree hugger liberalism the US military and insurance companies are quietly preparing for it.

      1. dearieme

        Two sets of profiteers of Global Warming stand out. (i) The global warmmongers themselves – a sleepy, low-status backwater scarcely recognised as part of physics has become front page news with research grants all round, promotions, tenured posts, expanding research groups, and so on. (ii) The rent-seekers – “green” energy, wind turbines and what not.

        Hell, I might do well out of it myself by royalties from a software package: if that’s what my potential customers want, I’m happy to supply. But I’m entirely sceptical about the whole fandango.

        1. F. Beard

          I find it ironic that carbon, the “element of life”, is now called “pollution”.

          But hey, as long as the world is safe, clean and uncrowded for the bankers and their descendants, what else matters?

        2. joel3000

          Oh wow.

          Do you have any idea how much wealth is tied into digging up the massive pools of hydrocarbons under the ground so that they may be transformed into carbon in the atmosphere?

          And how small the pool of money for climate science and renewable energy is, in comparison?

          Fossil wealth dwarfs climate science and renewable energy wealth.

          You are either a very silly person or a fossil troll. Perhaps both.

        3. Valissa

          Climate Change: The Biggest Business Opportunity of Our Time http://www.theglobalist.com/storyid.aspx?storyid=9626

          Despite this link, I also think that joel3000 is right about the huge amount of money to be made off of hydrocarbons as the primary driver of debate and policy (tossing in a few green bones for the natives). IMO that includes both sides playing the global warming propaganda game (the fear mongers AND the deniers – a well worn kabuki tradition).

          1. skippy

            The quantities of plankton are “truly exceptional,” says Walker Smith, a marine biologist at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., who was not part of the team conducting the research.

            If these blooms are widespread under the ice along continental shelves, the primary productivity in these regions could be up to 10 times greater than open-water productivity, the team estimates.

            Indeed, the find helps explain why phytoplankton is less abundant in open water: The blooms snag nearly all of the nutrients moving into the basin from the Pacific via the Bering Strait before the ice melts significantly, Arrigo says.

            Researchers had interpreted the relative dearth of open-water plankton as a sign of low primary productivity in the Arctic Ocean, but “the real action was going on under the ice,” he says. “And where we thought the bloom was beginning when the ice melted, actually the bloom was ending.”

            In addition, researchers have noted that the Arctic ocean is becoming an enormous sink for atmospheric CO2 as the waters open up in the summer. Yet the open waters in the Chukchi Sea don’t show the levels of dissolved CO2 they should if that’s the case. Now, it looks as though the answer lies with the under-ice phytoplankton blooms, because they consume the CO2 via photosynthesis, just as land plants do.

            More work needs to be done to determine the basinwide extent of the blooms and their timing. Yet the steady retreat of summer sea ice and the increasingly early onset of the melt period raises some troubling prospects, the researchers add.

            If the bloom comes earlier, it might occur before the marine creatures who come to feed on it have arrived there to eat. The biggest effect could be on the fish the feed on plankton throughout the water column, rather than on bottom feeders such as whales and walruses, Arrigo says.

            Despite the concerns, the thrill of discovery remains an undercurrent as the researchers talk about their results.

            http://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2012/0607/Beneath-Arctic-ice-scientists-find-an-ecosystem-never-imagined-video/%28page%29/2

            Skippy… nothing to see here folks and what we don’t know… wont wreck the party.

          2. Valissa

            Chuck Spinney: Climate Models – Got Real Data? http://www.phibetaiota.net/2012/02/chuck-spinney-climate-models-whos-got-real-data/
            The direct effect of CO2 is well-established physics, based on laboratory results, and known for over a century. Feedbacks are due to the ways the Earth reacts to the direct warming effect of the CO2. The threefold amplification by feedbacks is based on the assumption, or guess, made around 1980, that more warming due to CO2 will cause more evaporation from the oceans and that this extra water vapor will in turn lead to even more heat trapping because water vapor is the main greenhouse gas. And extra heat will cause even more evaporation, and so on. This amplification is built into all the climate models. The amount of amplification is estimated by assuming that nearly all the industrial-age warming is due to our CO2.

            The government climate scientists and the media often tell us about the direct effect of the CO2, but rarely admit that two thirds of their projected temperature increases are due to amplification by feedbacks. The serious skeptical scientists have always agreed with the government climate scientists about the direct effect of CO2. The argument is entirely about the feedbacks. The feedbacks dampen or reduce the direct effect of the extra CO2, cutting it roughly in half. The main feedbacks involve evaporation, water vapor, and clouds. In particular, water vapor condenses into clouds, so extra water vapor due to the direct warming effect of extra CO2 will cause extra clouds, which reflect sunlight back out to space and cool the earth, thereby reducing the overall warming.

            There are literally thousands of feedbacks, each of which either reinforces or opposes the direct warming effect of the extra CO2. Almost every long-lived system is governed by net feedback that dampens its response to a perturbation. If a system instead reacts to a perturbation by amplifying it, the system is likely to reach a tipping point and become unstable (like the electronic squeal that erupts when a microphone gets too close to its speakers). The earth’s climate is long-lived and stable— it has never gone into runaway greenhouse, unlike Venus — which strongly suggests that the feedbacks dampen temperature perturbations such as that from extra CO2.

            Global warming helps Arctic algae suck CO2 – Massive phytoplankton bloom solves missing carbon mystery http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/06/08/phytoplankton_bloom/
            The huge amount of CO2 photosynthesized by the phytoplankton, in fact, may help explain why the ocean is absorbing more of that greenhouse gas than calculations would otherwise indicate: even though the amount of dissolved CO2 in Arctic waters is below predicted levels, that carbon is finding another home in the photosynthetic systems of the phytoplankton.

          3. F. Beard

            Whatever happened to Gaia?
            Can it be she’s not?
            Or did she leave the kitchen
            cause it got too hot?

            I never believed in Gaia
            but she kept the atheists quiet.
            Now a little heat (or cold?)
            and they start to riot.

          4. skippy

            Sadly the reduction in ice will reduce this mechanisms ability to mitigate C02.

            Skippy… if humans only had a better sense of time scales.

          5. Valissa

            Skippy, there is no science that shows that human beings have the ability to control the temperature of the planet or more specifically to control the current trend of global warming. Whatever happened to pollution as the the real issue here anyway? Personally I more afraid of the supposed solutions proposed for “saving” us from global warming (which almost all smack of pre-disaster capitalism in addition to various UN based and other money and power games) than I am of global warming itself. After all, all the major proposed “solutions” are funded and championed by the very same global elite that has brought us to where we are now. But I understand that other’s feel differently. Pick your poison.

          6. skippy

            Disaster Capitalism?

            I think anyone save first world country’s top 20% wealth pop, could define that – better – than most.

            Skippy… poison? Yes, in less than a hundred years it covers a globe, quantity is now the metric to watch.

  3. Scott

    I’ll Have Another Retirement Ceremony: Injured Horse Won’t Lead Post Parade At Belmont
    I suspect the horse would be worth more for stud fees if he ran and finished last. The suspicion is genetic frailty which seriously diminishes stud value.

  4. René

    Types of conspiracies (top secret!)

    Cabal, an association between religious, political, or tribal officials to further their own ends, usually by intrigue.

    Conspiracy (civil), an agreement between persons to deceive, mislead, or defraud others of their legal rights, or to gain an unfair advantage.

    Conspiracy (crime), an agreement between persons to break the law in the future, in some cases having committed an act to further that agreement.

    Conspiracy (political), the overthrow of a government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conspiracy

  5. Paul Tioxon

    Obviously, nobody wants to touch the taboo penguin expose!! What, the disney franchise goes porno is too much for the uptight plastic middle class white picket suburban fence fantasy? Male penguins unable to discern a live or dead female sex partner. This just screams marriage joke. Where’s Lenny Bruce and Louis CK when you need them. Quick, I need perspective!

    1. F. Beard

      “It’s just full of accounts of sexual coercion, sexual and physical abuse of chicks, non-procreative sex, and finishes with an account of what he considers homosexual behaviour, and it was fascinating.” from http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18370797emphais added]

      If animal behavior is used to justify human behavior then note that child abuse is justified too. So much then for justifying human behavior with animal behavior.

      1. YrMom

        What a charming bridge you must guard! Homosexuality is a natural variation in sexual expression. In the human sphere, it is legally and amongst the enlightened, perfectly acceptable between two or more parties WHO ARE ABLE TO GIVE CONSENT. If you go back and read the article, or maybe go back in time to third grade to work on reading comprehension, you will notice that the penguin youths have sex with chicks and dead females because they are smaller/weaker/unable to protect themselves. Maybe in YOUR Mad Max fantasy (or horrifying reality, I won’t pretend to know for sure), taking advantage of they younger/weaker/unable to give consent flies. But for the rest of us who are not in your terrordome (let’s call it “civilization” or “the modern world” or “reality”), that sh*t, like penguins, don’t fly. Stop confusing pedophiles, necrophiles, and homosexuals. You’ll only be doing yourself a favor. Happy Pride!

        1. F. Beard

          Maybe in YOUR Mad Max fantasy (or horrifying reality, I won’t pretend to know for sure), taking advantage of they younger/weaker/unable to give consent flies. YrMom

          Where did you pull that out of?

          I merely pointed out that animal behavior CANNOT be used to justify human behavior else taking advantage of the weak is justified too.

          1. Paul Tioxon

            Mr Beard,
            I concur that animal behavior should not, can not and must not be used to justify human behavior. WE create our own social rules. And, we don’t base it on other animals. It is the considered opinion of thousands of years of social living that some behavior is acceptable and others not. Projections, one cultural reaction to this set of observations from the Edwardian sensibilities, created an “ABOVE TOP SECRET” designation for penguin sexual behavior. Sex is treated with circumspection and taboo for good reason. How we maintain the social order includes sexual conduct. Crimes of passion arise from social relations in ways that are not criminogenic in origin. Hence, the term, crime of passion.

            If some sex serves to diminish the social order, it is rightly proscribed. Some acts, formerly taboo, now are more acceptable, because they do not adversely affect the participants or the social order, such as same sex marriage. We live and learn, just not so much from our fellow non-human earthlings.

          2. F. Beard

            WE create our own social rules. Paul Tioxon

            Then how would a young child know he/she was being molested? Yet they do? And suffer psychological trauma from it?

          3. K Ackermann

            Then how would a young child know he/she was being molested?

            I forget where I read this, and it was years ago, but a father was accused by his ex of molesting their daughter, and he denied it. The child was then run through a physical examination, and then several sessions with a professional of some sort who talked through a sock puppet about the touching of naughty parts. The conclusion was basically that if the poor kid wasn’t buggered by the father, then she sure as hell was by the state.

          4. skippy

            The problem is beardo, that the study of animals was tainted by morals, which were projected by the observer, onto his/hers subject.

            This has and is, a huge problem with studies of our world.

            Skippy… what a screwy world some live in, biblical genocide is oaky doaky (there gwad was not as strong as ours), yet animals doing immoral SEX ACTS (projection of the observer) is conflated to a rationalization for it with in our species. BTW a lot of studies have been fiddled with or suppressed for these reasons.

    2. K Ackermann

      Alright, I’ll give it a go, Paul. I did stay at a Holiday Inn last night…

      They call that depraved? That’s nothing. When I was young, I’d have to play that game Don’t Tell Mommy, and then of course I’d be crying after. My sister, God bless her, would take one look at me, and say, “What the hell are you crying for? He barely raped ya!

      You were probably expecting something about a nun, right?

      Pervert.

    3. bob

      How did he know the female penguins were dead? Maybe she just wasn’t having that much fun?

      I really can’t imagine how penguins fucking, in any way, could be depraved. They have the profile of a bowling pin, no useful upper limbs, and a beak. I’m not sure on the actuation of a penguin tounge.

      How close was he to the action? I just searched google for “penguin testicles”, I didn’t get any pictures. I can’t find any pictures of penguins where any sex organs are visible. Granted, I don’t know what I am looking for.

      Perhaps this is the rub- In order to see the pengin orgies, he had to get close enough to become part of them.

      Or, was he seeing animals, cooped up to close together doign stupid stuff to pass the time….”I dare you to go over and screw that dead chick (ha)…..”

      What if that is how they deterime if the other pengin is still alive? A penguin doesn’t have that many useful limbs…probing with a penis might have been the only option. When the only tool you have is a hammer and all that…

  6. Susan the other

    The tone of Rdan’s “Is Globalization Good for America’s Middle Class” sounded a tad lobotomized. As if he were only talking sixes anyway so who cares. He hints at the benefits of globalization actually being something other than trade. Maybe that is true; it could also be the excuse to continue with “free trade” at the expense of those left out of the material gains.

    Another way to look at the claimed social benefits of globalization might be to analyze the current war in the middle east. Globalization didn’t prevent it, probably made it worse. In that so many middle easterners weren’t benefited by trading with the West. It appears that poverty has skyrocketed due to global trade. And just admire how India has benefited with piles of garbage being mined by orphans.

    Or look at the maquiladoras of Mexico, just across the Rio Grande. That place has been a hell-hole since LBJ pushed it through in the mid 60s. It’s nothing short of disgusting.

    And what do all the “theorems” say about peak productivity. They do not address the undeniable fact that this is a new age. An age of dangerous efficiency. Dangerous to once stable economies which relied on a slower pace of productivity and dangerous to the environment which relies on a necessary level of reclamation – both of which have so far been sacrificed to the gods of trade.

    Instead of saying “free trade does not help everyone,” I think it is far more accurate to say that free trade does not help anyone.

  7. Vince

    Is Globalization Good for America’s Middle Class?

    If by Globalization you mean the importation of more and more low wage, low education Central Americans?

    Forget the theorems. Here are the effects on the street.

    I have seen the following happen to seven middle class guys and one gal that have worked at a trade for decades, who own tools, have built skills, take pride in their work and seven of whom have families have been marginalized by globalization.

    No one will hire the plumber at sixty an hour because they can hire a combination gardener-carpenter-painter from Mexico for 25 an hour or less. He also has a sister that cleans houses. The work he does is OK to disastrous. Leaks and floods occasionally. Employers can’t find him and are dismayed but it’s too late. Few have any idea what pride of workmanship or quality work look like anymore.

    Gardener-carpenter-painter GCP has three kids in the public school and pays zero taxes except sales taxes for gasoline and sundries. Clothing, cars, trucks, tools, furniture are hand me downs left behind by family members who have gone back or that he “hauls away”. Medical care is provided by a local health clinic whose bills never get paid. Almost all the money he earns is sent home to Mexico and out of the local economy by a check cashing service.

    Plumber who used to pay taxes and support a couple of local restaurants and stores now gets earned income tax credit and has become a peon himself, scrabbling for jobs and lowering his hourly to 20 an hour if he can find work at all.

    “I’m just a Pee-On myself” he says. “So much for trickle down”.

  8. jsmith

    And the march towards the murder of more innocent people by the fascist war criminals in the United States empire grows ever louder.

    Here’s fascist propagandist Nicholas Kristoff from today’s NYT:

    “I’m generally an admirer of Obama’s foreign policy, but his policies toward both Syria and Sudan increasingly seem lame, ineffective and contrary to American interests and values.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/10/opinion/sunday/kristof-from-peace-prize-to-paralysis.html

    All of these f*cking murderous propagandists – along with the war criminal American leaders that they work for – need to face war crimes tribunals and then be put in prison for the rest of their lives.

    I especially love how he makes waging aggressive war and slaughtering innocent people in sovereign nations sound like it’s the “cool” thing to do.

    Oh, Obama, you’re so lame, man.

    Would you just be cool and kill some more people for us now and quit being so square?

    Make no mistake, Kristoff and all of the rest are indeed war criminals just like the leaders they service.

    They should be treated as such by every American citizen and given the lack of respect that war criminals rightfully deserve.

    1. F. Beard

      “Therefore, salt is good; but if even salt has become tasteless, with what will it be seasoned?” Luke 14:34

    2. Klassy!

      Kristof always knows what is best for others. And if it turns out he was wrong he’ll say “At least we were doing something.”.

    3. McKillop

      Agreed.
      Murder is murder. K
      illers must be ‘called to account’.
      We speak and think disparagingly about “samesex” relationships but have been brainwshed into believing that war criminals who lead our countries to slaughter others are heroic.
      I’ve attended marriage ceremonies and heard people claim that samesex marriages will destroy civilization _as we know it_: the same moronic speakers proclaimed that ‘we’ should nuke Iraq. Or Iran. Or whomever.
      I mentioned previously that c**ksucker is an insult extraordinary, even if said in latinate civility. The men and women who advocate (or commit) war crimes are named heroes.
      Im
      I’m cheering for marrying side.

  9. F. Beard

    re My Self-Esteem A Mess Is Refrain For Spain’s Unemployed Bloomberg:

    When unemployment goes high enough the question will change from “What’s wrong with me?” to “What’s wrong with the system?!” and properly so too.

    This the bankers must fear but ironically they may be unable to change the minds of the politicians and populace they have deceived with gold standard thinking.

    1. Hugh

      That’s pretty much the definition of an Establishment liberal: to criticize the system and then vote for the status quo.

    2. psychohistorian

      I have read Predator Nation and he does say he will hold his nose and vote for Obama.

      Mr Ferguson also says in his book, “Thankfully, America still has a very robust and independent free press.” I can’t speak for Yves but I did choke a bit reading that statement in the book.

      Mr Ferguson has done a yeoman job of paving the way for prosecution and shame of the chief architect puppets of our generation but seems too captured by his participation in the field to see past the platitudes of how necessary saving AIG was, for example.

      My final comment about Predator Nation is that he assumes that our problems started in the the 1970′s and seem to have no deeper roots.

      Predator Nation has content that could be used to put people in jail or permanently out to pasture if we lived in the vaunted free press world that Mr Ferguson believes we do.
      How long is the statute of limitations on these crimes?
      How long would we have to wait to see if the book data is going to be used?

  10. Lambert Strether

    And the Morgensen piece is great. We’re fighting about school budgets and sewerage at the local level, and we’re still paying the banksters for interest on swaps (if I’ve got that right) that they suckered us into. Well, that’s OK. The banksters put all that money to socially productive use, like… like… like…

    1. F. Beard

      like… like… like… LS

      Covering their non-performing assets?

      The only good thing about busts is that they force banks to act like the true villains they are.

  11. Aquifer

    “Ford compared this scenario to the intertwining, complex relationships and structures that helped contribute to the global financial crisis.

    New cloud services may arise that essentially “resell, trade, or speculate on complex cocktails or ‘derivatives’ of more basic cloud resources and services, much like the modern financial and energy trading industries operate,” he wrote.”

    I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now ….

    Ah yes – trusting a system to a network with its head in the clouds – as they say, what could go wrong?

    What will bring the system down? Derivatives? Or a cloudburst?

    Yuk, yuk, yuk – never did like those “fancy machines”….

  12. F. Beard

    re THE VENUS TRANSIT AND HUNTING FOR ALIEN WORLDS Discovery:

    This is good! Now soon we’ll be able to aim SETI radio telescopes precisely at Earth-like planets and still hear NOTHING?

    There is a conspiracy theory that evidence for the existence of Space Aliens is being suppressed in order not to destroy Christianity. That’s becoming more laughable than ever.

  13. SR6719

    This is a response to craazyman that I started to put on the “Spanish Bank Rescue” thread, but my comment has nothing to do with Spain, so I decided it should go here instead.

    craazyman (quoting F. Scott Fitzgerald): “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

    Well done! Along with your “Jay Gatsby is dead” comment the other day you’re on a roll.

    Speaking of F. Scott Fitzgerald, Modern Drunkard Magazine stated that it was not uncommon for him to finish off more then a quart of gin a day, and he considered the consumption of a case of beer a day as “being on the wagon.”

    Fitzgerald: “Perhaps 50% of our friends and relations will tell you in good faith that is was my drinking that drove Zelda mad and the other half would assure you that it was her madness that drove me to drink. Neither of these judgements means much of anything. These two groups of friends and relations would be unanimous in saying that each of us would have been better off without the other. The irony is that we have never been more in love with each other in all our lives. She loves the alcohol on my lips; I cherish her most extravagant hallucinations.”
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald

    1. K Ackermann

      We shouldn’t glorify these things. You know… William Burroughs was addicted to herion for half his life, and there’s no question it was one of the things that cut his life short at the age of 83. Who knows how long he could’ve lived otherwise?

        1. ctcnt

          yes lulz here too… i saw someone describe the fantasy writer bradbury’s death as a tragedy… he was close to 90? c’mon people, get some perspective…

  14. HarveyFroth

    “Depraved”?

    Harvey Milk used to boast that he “seduced” one teenage
    runaway a week in his camera store in the Castro.

    Now every public school student in California is going to have to take time out of academics to study his life and
    philosophy per the new social studies standards.

    It’s all a matter of interpretation and degree.

  15. roberto

    Euro class rascals and strategy Mark
    “In some schools there are reprehensible practice of abuse of young and poor children. Group pushes the little boys grown, spit into his sandwich, his cards adhere ośmieszającymi inscriptions on the back, hiding his knapsack. These rascals just bully the weak and small, because a strong and large does not move, afraid.”
    http://www.rybinski.eu/2012/06/euroklasowe-lobuzy-i-strategia-mareczka/
    http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=pl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=pl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.rybinski.eu%2F2012%2F06%2Feuroklasowe-lobuzy-i-strategia-mareczka%2F

  16. rps

    Type 1 Diabetes Rate Rises Among U.S. Youth….

    Buzzzzzzz. I’ll take GMO corn products for $100 Trebek.

    Let us count the ways GMO’s have infiltrated our food supply as the FDA turned the otherway, and never studied the undeniable side-effects on human beings. Rather, a percentage of the US human population– the poor who have zero ability to purchase organic produce, are Monsanto’s guinea pigs. GMO corn is eaten by the animals served up for breakfast with a bowl of GMO corn cereal with the milk provided by the cow that ate the corn. See!!, we haven’t even made it to snacks, lunch, and dinner.

    Monsanto’s PR department will follow up with the fat diabetic kids story, who are lazy and play video games all day. Forget the fact they reach into a bag of GMO snacks washing it down with the GMO high-fructose corn syrup soda pop.

    In a sense, it’s reminiscent of the Lead controversy. “Hey Mom and Dad, lead paint chips and leaded gasoline aren’t harmful” to the kiddies. Junior’s IQ drops, kid is put on ritalin and is a low functioning drug addict, works at dead end jobs, marries, produces another generation of serfs.

    Capitalism hums along on the human cattle line production .

    Move along nothing to see here…….

    1. F. Beard

      It could easily be the food. But what about lack of exercise? Lack of outdoor activity?

      But this is alarming. I always thought Type I diabetes was genetic only.

  17. rps

    “But what about lack of exercise? Lack of outdoor activity?”

    Good job Beard, Monsanto would be proud of you.

    Perhaps the GMO’s affect energy levels that produce lethargy.

    Propaganda for the masses! Ain’t it beautiful when it (capitalism) all comes together

    1. F. Beard

      Well, being a proud omnivore, I like to think that humans (plus trillions of individualized gut bacteria) can digest about anything.

      But I eagerly await learning the cause of this alarming increase of Type I diabetes.

      Of course banking will be the root cause, I’d bet

      1. rps

        Eat up kiddies, Monsanto loves Ya’: Many of the foods that are most popular with children contain GMOs. Cereals, snack bars, snack boxes, cookies, processed lunch meats, and crackers all contain large amounts of high risk food ingredients. In North America, over 80% of our food contains GMOs.

        GMOs may be hidden in common processed food ingredients such as: Amino Acids, Aspartame, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Ascorbate, Vitamin C, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Flavorings (“natural” and “artificial”), High Fructose Corn Syrup, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, Lactic Acid, Maltodextrins, Molasses, Monosodium Glutamate, Sucrose, Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP), Xanthan Gum, Vitamins, Yeast Products.

        GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms,” are plants or animals created through the gene splicing techniques of biotechnology thatmerges DNA from different species, creating unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and viral genes that cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.

        Virtually all commercial GMOs are engineered to withstand direct application of herbicide and/or to produce an insecticide.

        http://www.nongmoproject.org/learn-more/gmos-and-your-family/

        photo of a blonde blue-eyed little girl holding a placard “I’m not a science experiment” hits the spot. But I think a photo of inner-city kids is the real story

    2. Up the Ante

      “But what about lack of exercise? Lack of outdoor activity? [.. and the AIDS crisis, for undoing the sexual revolution][.. and fracking, fracking to destroy groundwater so as to sell the gas overseas, highest price]”

      He did say that, didn’t he ?

      Capitalism .. to ass-ail you at every turn.

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