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Links 10/11/12

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I hate giving apologies of sorts BUT Lambert and I spent a fair chunk of Wednesday on the phone with two different firms that might help with our tech mess. This is the first time we’ve felt cautiously optimistic that we might find service providers who could help. In the mean time, our current software guy will be making some changes over the next week that should improve performance (we need to work through that first before we can address the Mystery of the Disappearing Comments).

The Chinese Soft-Shelled turtle urinates through its mouth QI Elves. Yet another anti-antidote from Richard Smith.

For Some Drivers, an Electric Motorcycle Could Be the Best of Both Worlds New York Times (furzy mouse). I resolved never to own a car, but this might be an acceptable compromise. If you can carry a bag or two of groceries as well, it would be a great device.

Lance Armstrong accused in USADA files of being the ringleader of biggest doping conspiracy in sporting history Telegraph. I know this has been in the news a while, and I really hoped that Armstrong would prove his critics wrong. But the use of performance enhancing techniques is so widespread in sports, it’s hard to believe that many accomplishments at the very top end these days are real.

Europe Dispensing Wrong Fiscal Medicine, Economist Koo Warns Bloomberg. What is most interesting is that in the “for the masses” version of the site, this story has the most prominent placement.

Spain’s credit rating downgraded to near junk Telegraph

Spanish Bond Yields Rise Wall Street Journal

Carlyle’s China problem: some questions for David Rubenstein John Hempton

The Nation’s deeply deceptive Obama-endorsement editorial Vast Left Wing Conspiracy (Lambert). A top notch shredding.

Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle, Ursula Rozum agree to four town hall meetings without Dan Maffei Syracuse. I know this is really parochial, but Ann Marie Buerkle is the stupidest person I have ever seen appear on television. A potted plant has a higher IQ. I can’t fathom how she has a driver’s license, much the less got into Congress. Reader bob (a local) writes: “Danny muffin decided he doesn’t want to play. Ursula is pretty brave, those “town hall meetings” that AMB organizes are notorious for a hand picked crowd and questions, and threats.” So if you are in the Oswego area and are free tomorrow at 6 PM, you might see if you can snag a seat.

When Conservative Republicans Loved Keynes and Expansionary Fiscal Policy Brad DeLong (Scott)

The Disingenuous James Bullard Tim Duy

Controversies over economics and genetics Tyler Cowen

Do falling trade costs benefit all countries equally? VoxEU

Neil Barofsky on the Fed Stress Test mathbabe

E-Mails Cited to Back Lawsuit’s Claim That Equity Firms Colluded on Big Deals New York Times (Richard Smith)

Goldman’s ‘muppet hunt’ draws a blank Financial Times. The literalness is a cute distraction. And as Congressional investigations of Goldman show, the firm’s staff are far more careful about what they say in e-mails than staff of other shops.

Fed’s Tarullo Calls for Cap on Bank Sizes Wall Street Journal

Canadian bank goes after homes to collect credit card debts Bay Citizen (Lisa Epstein)

The Marshmallow Study revisited EureakAlert (Mark Thoma). This is important. Poor people are accused of being bad at math and/or deferred gratification (known formally as hyperbolic discounting) but this suggests that behavior may be a rational response to environmental instability.

* * *

lambert here:

Mission elapsed time: T + 33 and counting*

“When an old man dies, a library burns to the ground.” ~African proverb

Walmart actions. Deadline: “‘We feel like if they refuse to listen to our proposition we will make sure that on Black Friday we will take action inside and outside of stores,’ said Colby Harris, 22, a Walmart worker from Dallas, TX, and a member of OUR Walmart [here], a United Food and Commercial Workers-backed worker organization closely affiliated with Making Change at Walmart [here]. ‘We’ll make it known that Walmart’s deadline is Black Friday,’ he added.” An attack on the supply chain in time, rather than space. Interesting because it scales continentally, unlike previous Capitol and “square” occupations. … Association: “OUR Walmart [Organization United for Respect at Walmart] is a kind of return to labor formations of the 1930s. It’s an association–they aren’t looking for legal certification, they don’t claim to represent everyone. They’re a minority that is willing to stick their necks out” (good explainer). …. Spreading: “Until Friday, when about 60 Wal-Mart employees walked off the job for a day in LA, no Wal-Mart retail workers had ever gone on strike, the [United Food and Commercial Workers] said.” … Spreading: “Protests that began in Los Angeles on Oct. 4 have spread to at least 11 cities nationwide over the past week, including the Bay Area, Sacramento, Miami, and the Washington DC-area.” … Spreading: “The [UFCW] said several workers from a Wal-Mart store in Sacramento walked off the job early today and are now in Bentonville, AR, to join a protest of the retailer’s worker policies.” … Grievances: “‘People were really tired that any time they would speak out against the pay, hours, how much they would work, that management would cut their hours or not give them a schedule,’ said [Evelin Cruz, a department manager at Walmart in Pico Rivera, CA], who is one of thousands of members of Our Walmart.” … Bentonville, AR: “The director of the Making Change at Walmart coalition said he couldn’t confirm the number or Walmart workers participating in a ‘National Day of Action’ Wednesday at the company’s annual investor meeting at its headquarters in Bentonville, AR.” (See other Patch stories San Leandro, CA, Castro Valley, CA, San Ramon, CA, Laurel, MD, and Fridley, MN.) … Challenge: “‘We are more than happy to have our HR team meet with you on an individual basis that you have about you, your store or your team management,’ said David Scott, human resources vice president.” (I would be more than happy to live in a world where the term “human resources” was regarded with loathing and horror.) … Response: “‘We’ve come to them all this way to talk but as a group because some issues are not individual based,’ said Gregory Fletcher, Walmart associate.” (more) “‘I think as we move as one they can’t ignore us,” [Lori Amos, Walmart associate] said.”

CA. Media critique: “After being sold over the summer, the [Orange Country Register] is hiring about 50 editorial staffers and adding new print sections — because print’s where the money is.”

FL. Voting: “Pasco County Elections Supervisor Brian Corley earlier this month said many voters were confused about a recorded call from the Obama campaign encouraging them to visit their elections office, request absentee ballots, and cast them on the spot. He said some voters did not understand the difference between voting at early voting sites and voting in-person using absentee ballots, which is already under way.” Jeebus, who wouldn’t be confused?

IL. Walmart strike: “Striking workers at a Walmart distribution center in Elwood, IL won a victory this week when the managing subcontractor RoadLink rescinded the worker’s suspensions after they confronted the employer demanding better conditions. The 38 workers will return to work with full pay for the time they were on strike. Ted Ledwa, one of the striking workers, said in a press release ‘With this victory, we forced the company to respect our rights. We showed that when workers are united we can stand up to the biggest corporations in the world and win.’”(Elwood is where Imperial Troopers arrested 17 peaceful protesters [NC 2012-10-03]. So that didn’t work. But the conditions? …. Walmart strike: “‘I think there’s been a hit in Walmart’s armor,’ said Phil Bailey, one of the strikers who marched triumphantly back into the warehouse in matching Warehouse Workers for Justice t-shirts. ‘There’s been this expectation that they can’t be damaged at all. Not true!’” Of course, with Obama on the picket line in his home state… Oh, wait… Walmart: “Today workers and their supporters plan to protest at 35 different Walmart locations in Chicago, including the Walmart express at 570 W. Monroe.”

LA. About that sinkhole: “Shaw officials working with the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources on the sinkhole told about 100 residents gathered for a community meeting Tuesday that the well north of La. 70 and another drilled on the same site would be linked to a flare to begin removing the gas gradually.”

ND. Control of the Senate: “In rural western ND, tens of thousands of men work in the lucrative oil fields. The residents of these “man camps” could decide which party controls the Senate. Only one or two races will determine the Senate majority in November’s elections — and the North Dakota race is one of the most competitive. But it’s the state’s lax voting requirements and small population that make nomadic oil-field workers politically relevant.”

NY. Greens: “U.S. Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle [R] and Green Party candidate Ursula Rozum said today they have agreed to a series of four town hall meetings without D challenger Dan Maffei. All three candidates have agreed to at least two televised debates that will be split up and carried by every broadcast station in Central New York. Rozum, who has consistently received support in the single digits — up to 7 percent.” Ha ha, a D empty chair! … Unions: “During negotiations on Tuesday, the Guild asked why members were offered zero raises in 2011 and a one percent bump for the final months of this year. Bernard Plum, the lawyer representing the Times Company, allegedly responded, ‘This is a declining industry and a declining business,’ and that it was common for management to ask staffers to make sacrifices, and ‘even more common to have zeros.’” Oh? How about the execs?

OH. Rallying the base: “In Mr. Romney’s three-stop trek across OH Wednesday, every destination is nestled in a county that McCain won handily in 2008 with at least 59% of the vote.”

PA. The new normal: “[Rick] Renz, a 58-year-old sales manager, said he had never felt so disheartened about his country. ‘Everyone says the job numbers are good. But my two adult kids are sitting at home’” (good interview piece). … Swing states: “A Romney campaign source, who would only speak if not identified, told PhillyClout that the campaign is shifting five of 64 staffers to OH to help organize efforts with early voting in that state. The source emphasized that all of Romney’s ‘victory center’ offices in PA remain open.”

TX. Walmart: “Walmart employees picketed the company’s store on West Wheatland Road in Dallas on Tuesday. They say the company retaliates against workers who speak out against low wages and cutting hours. The workers say wages are so low that some must rely on public programs to support their families.” … ObamaCare: “[I]f TX would participate in the mostly federally funded (90/10, when it rolls out completely) Medicaid expansion under the ACA, it would have an enormous palliative benefit for the justice system. Right now, the state’s approach is mostly to ignore mental health issues until they falls into government’s lap via the criminal justice system.”

WI. Walker: “[Kelly Rindfleisch's plea deal to charges she conducted campaign work as an aide to Gov. Scott Walker when he was Milwaukee County executive] means Walker won’t have to testify at Rindfleisch’s trial, which had been scheduled for next week. Walker was subpoenaed to testify by Gimbel. The plea deal also means testimony of several Walker campaign aides in open court won’t happen. ” Hold the popcorn.

The trail. Voting: “For the most part, opponents have been unable to win the crucial argument: That voter ID laws are an unconstitutional infringement on voting rights.” Losing the war. … Obama/Romney debate: “[M]ost Ds still refuse to admit what happened right before their eyes. While criticizing the president’s debate performance they were not willing to admit that the Obama who stood on stage is the real Obama. Stripped of a script he was laid bare before the world, an empty suit devoid of any conviction except the desire to stay in office.” Reversion to the mean. … Obama/Romney debate: “By cleverly exploiting Mr Romney’s tactical missteps, such as his failure to come to grips with the tax-return issue, and publicising his outright ‘gaffes’, Obama’s team had managed to outperform the fundamentals for most of September. But Wednesday’s widely-watched debate served as a focusing event, allowing voters to see the two men side by side. In effect, then, the debate helped recalibrate the race back to where it should have been all along.” Reversion to the mean. … Biden/Ryan debate: “According to research by the D pollster Stan Greenberg, Obama’s performance was viewed poorly by unmarried women, who wanted a more combative tone and a sharper critique of Romney’s views about the middle class. Unmarried women were a crucial constituency for Mr. Obama in 2008, voting for him, 70 to 29 percent, over John McCain.” (Biden, sponsor of VAWA, may help there.) … 

Outside baseball. ObamaCare: “According to Labor Campaign for Single-Payer Coordinator Mark Dudzic: “The ACA has four tiers of benefits from a platinum plan down to a bronze plan. Most unions plans are actually above the platinum level. And I think the pressure will be to push people down that ladder into these lower actuarial plans” (DCB). Shocker! … Sequestration: “Though a trio of Senators has traveled the country warning of impending job losses caused by automatic budget cuts that take effect Jan. 2, industry insiders and budget experts say defense contractors are unlikely to need to lay off workers on the day the cuts are scheduled to begin. Assurances from the White House helped. [T]he guidance ‘takes away from the companies the requirement to [issue notices] in order to meet that fiduciary responsibility,” said Cord Sterling, the top lobbyist with the Aerospace Industries Association.’” “Guidance” is a very important word in official Washington. It will also be interesting to see if social insurance programs do lay people off.

Robama vs. Obomney watch. Flip flop: “The Obama campaign has shifted its emphasis away from attacks portraying Romney as a flip-flopper without core principles. Instead, its message has focused on painting Romney as a hardcore conservative — a label not easily applied to the former governor of MA, a traditionally blue state, who signed into law the template for the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare.” So now the Obama campaign is going to flip flip on whether Romney’s a flip flopper. If the election is all that important, shouldn’t it be easy for them to make up their minds?

The Romney. Fear: “Romney isn’t an ideological moderate. He’s a pragmatic executive. When he needs to govern from the center, he does. When he needs to lurch to the right, off he goes. So if you want to know how he’ll govern, don’t listen to what he says. Look at who he has reason to fear” (Ezra Klein). A lesson here, for “progressives.”

The Obama. Headline you never want to see: “Obama campaign attempts to quell panic.” … Pollster: “Democratic pollster Tom Jensen: ‘I’m open to the idea of freaking out, but I’m not quite there yet.’” ,… Mêng (Youthful Folly): “Obama’s campaign is divided into two camps: impassive warhorses and anxiety-ridden newbies. Battle-scarred operatives have been doing nonstop psychic triage since the debate, calming nerves. That became easier on Wednesday when the first patch of internal polls came back from key swing states. They revealed that Obama was not in free fall, as some feared, but that his support has returned to where it was in July and August. ‘Voters haven’t switched from us to him,’ the strategist said. ‘But they are giving him a second look.’ In other words, in 90 minutes, Obama flushed a month’s worth of convention and 47-percent bounce.” Ha. So I guess we know which age cohort that leak to the Daily Mail came from. …. 

* Slogan of the day: Learn From Comrade Mitt Romney!

* * *

Antidote du jour (furzy mouse):

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176 comments

          1. craazyman

            somebody already did. right here.hahaha you’re crackin’ me up Skippy:

            craazyman says:

            August 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm

            Now and then I think of how we tried to screw them over
            Made so much money that I thought it was a lie
            Told myself that you were right for me
            Now my lawyer is my company
            But it was work and it’s an take I still remember

            You can get addicted to a certain kind of madness
            Indoctrination to the end, always the end
            I never saw that it did not make sense
            My only duty was obediance
            I’ll admit that I was sad when it was over

            But you didn’t have to cut me off
            Sayin it was all just me, and you were nothing
            We could never get enough
            Now you treat me like a stranger and it feels so rough
            Why’d you have to stoop so low
            lookin through all the records for the worst numbers
            I guess I did’t need that though
            Now you’re just some banksters that I used to know
            somebody
            Now you’re just some banksters that I use to know
            sombody
            da na na na naaa
            Now you’re just some banksters that I used to know

            with profound apologies to Gotye

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UVNT4wvIGY

            Read more at http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/08/sec-shows-abject-incompetence-in-toxic-cdo-case-against-citi-staffer.html#KZLzf8VBKCBkXflY.99

  1. hondje

    I’m a poor person with a math degree, so I suppose I would compute the area of the marshmallow before eating it like a preschooler.

          1. ZygmuntFraud

            It’s obvious to anyone who looks into these things that the lie derivative was named after Sophus for a REASON!

  2. craazyman

    I don’t know what’s weirder, urinating through your mouth or urinating through your brain.

    Lots of guys think with the same organ that urinates, especially after about 8 beers. Sometimes they don’t even need the beers. Sometimes the entire head is the organ itself, expressed in the referent: dickhead. I don’t know what the woman equivalent is. There must be one. I’m not a woman, so I wouldn’t know for sure. Maybe a woman can enlighten me.

    The more I observe animals, the less difference I see with humans. Except animals are usually gentler and more patient.

    1. hondje

      I know you’re aware that humans are animals, too, but it bears repeating that humans are animals. It’s unreasonable to expect us to act otherwise ;)

    2. Tim Mason

      As Jacques Derrida insists, the term ‘animal’ is far too large to be of much help : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ry49Jr0TFjk
      … and they are by no means all ‘gentler’ than we are : http://www.aislingmagazine.com/aislingmagazine/articles/TAM30/ValPlumwood.html (think of this as a pendant to that photo of a crocodile from last week)

      (I’m reading Haraway at the moment, which explains the interjection : http://www.metanexus.net/book-review/eating-well-together-donna-haraways-companion-species-manifesto )

    3. Aquifer

      Twain once said – in response to the claim that it was the “moral sense” that made humans “superior” – yes, man is the only creature that knows the difference between right and wrong and does wrong anyway …

        1. jonboinAR

          So do dogs, so don’t pick on cats. BTW, when they taught a gorilla to talk using sign language, the first thing it did was lie and try to pin the blame for its misdoings on someone else.

  3. Jim Haygood

    From Bloomberg’s article on Spain’s downgrade:

    “One can expect that one way or the other, the mechanism of intervention on secondary markets starts to act relatively soon,” [Deputy Economy Minister] Latorre said. “If the ECB itself considers there are inefficiencies in the transmission of monetary policy and that there are doubts on the irreversibility of the euro project, it is logical to think that European institutions will take the necessary measures shortly to dissipate those doubts.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-10-10/spain-downgraded-to-one-level-above-junk-by-s-p-on-risks.html

    Translation: Why doesn’t somebody do something?

    This is a suboptimal result that occurs when domestic politics collide with the oversight conditions of multinational aid.

    A prime minister who yields sovereignty to the Troika will be punished at the ballot box. But the Troika doesn’t hand out no-strings-attached funding. Game of chicken, as it were.

    So as the Telegraph darkly hints, markets may have to push Spain to the brink with rising bond yields and an acceleration of deposit flight.

    Rajoy fiddles while Andalusia burns and capital flies.

    Meanwhile his deputy Latorre seems fixated on the old joke about an economist stranded on a desert island with tins of beef stew, but no way to open them. ‘Asuma un abrelatas!‘ he cries triumphantly — ‘Assume a can opener!’

  4. Goin' South

    Re: Walmart actions and this–

    “OUR Walmart [Organization United for Respect at Walmart] is a kind of return to labor formations of the 1930s. It’s an association–they aren’t looking for legal certification, they don’t claim to represent everyone. They’re a minority that is willing to stick their necks out” (good explainer).”

    That approach has a name–solidarity unionism–and it’s been advocated for years by Staughton Lynd, historian, lawyer and activist. Here’s Lynd’s speech before the IWW Centenary gathering focused on just this way of doing things:

    http://www.iww.org/en/node/1043

    The Wagner Act (NLRA) came into being at a time when “solidarity unionism” was winning the day. It sought to tame the labor movement and establish the feds as referees. The impact, once the Supreme Court had (mis)interpreted the act and especially after Taft-Hartley, was to neuter the labor movement by taking away its most effective tactics.

    Another advantage of solidarity unionism is that it does not build a big union bureaucracy with palaces in D. C. that funnels millions of members’ dues to worthless Democrats.

    Re: the link included by Lambert–

    The link references the views of Nelson Lichtenstein who authored a very good bio of Walter Reuther (The Most Dangerous Man in America). It provides a good counter to those who think workers’ battles can be conducted under Marquis of Queensbury rules, e.g. the Flint plant takeover and battle.

    1. Goin' South

      Re: Walmart strikes–

      There are some different players involved in these Walmart actions:

      1) The Elwood, IL warehouse action was conducted by Warehouse Workers for Justice, a group organized with the help of the UE (United Electrical Workers), the same union that represented the workers at Republic Windows. The UE is an old “red” union that refused to comply with T-H’s “Red” registration requirements and was kicked out of the AFL as a result.

      2) Other actions are sponsored by OUR, a group organized by the UFCW, an AFL-CIO union that represents many supermarket workers around the country. We’ll just say that perhaps the UFCW is trying to turn over a new leaf.

      3) Finally, the SEIU (Andy Stern) is involved with some efforts to organize Walmart workers, oppose Walmart stores, etc.

      1. Aquifer

        If these guys know what’s good for ‘em, seems to me they should show SEIU the door …from what i have heard it has done healthcare workers more harm than good, e.g …..

        1. citlalopram

          My wife is a member of SEIU, and they have in past been too close to management. Just recently there was an attempted coup by another union to kick SEIU out. It failed and I think SEIU has woken up someone. Besides, the members couldn’t be bothered to fillout their ballots correctly, so it’s on them.

          It’s up to the members to make changes. Most of the workers just don’t care enough to fight.

      2. lambert strether

        Goin South:

        Super. Do feel free to send me links. This one was hard to write up because the sourcing was thin (at least where I knew to look): The outcomes of a single conference call, local TV station reports, and (it seems) a concerted effort on the Patch platform. So any better places to look, I’d appreciate, and I’ll put them on my regular list to check.

        * * *

        On another topic, and perhaps I’m stating the obvious here, but check the sentence with the word “continental” because, my goodness, it turns out workers were the key to a (and perhaps the only) potentially successful strategy all along. Now maybe somebody can explain why we can’t throw all the executives in jail and then — just to throw out an example — crowd source all corporate decision making…

        1. Goin' South

          labornotes.org is good, but seems to me you’ve used that source before.

          UE, unfortunately in my view, is heavy into Facebook, and their info is concentrated there, though there is a website at http://www.ueunion.org/. (Check out the great doc on the Republic Windows takeover if you go there.)

          Back when unions were into organizing and winning strikes, they always thought strategically, i.e. “continentally.” UE seems to be a place where there’s a lot of that going on. They even emphasize a strategy for plant shutdowns that is similar to what Naomi Klein and her husband documented in “The Take.” See http://www.ueunion.org/policy_pc.html. I’m a Wob, but I do respect what UE is doing.

    2. Richard Kline

      I can’t think of an American corporation riper and fatter for labor action than Walmart. What’re they gonna do, pull out of markets? Hah. Fire all their workers when any replacements come right out of the same communities just desertified by the action? Walmart’s taken hits in court on bad practices, so they don’t have a lot of wiggle room when pressed on . . . further bad practices. Walmart workers who make so little they’re qualifed for foodstamps have so little to lose that anything to gain, starting with respect, looks huge. What brought mass unionization is was corporate conditions just like what we see in Walmart now.

      1. PQS

        Walmart is the biggest Welfare Moocher that ever was….they instruct their employees on how to apply for food stamps and public housing while they personally rake in billions enough to build vanity museums and inflict their BS on the political system.

        We are subsidizing them with our tax dollars, so even boycotting their stores (which I have done for years) doesn’t hurt them.

        They are the poster child for predatory, bottom-line obsessed capitalist greed, even more, I would say, than Wall Street, because they have moved through small-town family business America like smallpox.

        I will be happy to support the workers in their actions, and I hope that Walmart does what they always do: clamp down hard and show themselves to be the creeps they really are.

        Walmart makes people poor with their “low prices”.

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          That’s right, Wal-Mart was the NWO exercise of the Nuclear Option in retail.

          The destruction of America’s Middle Class was INTENTIONAL, the result of a REAL CONSPIRACY. See ex-British Intel agent, John Coleman, on YouTube.

          How can there be any doubt about it? How could there ever have been any doubt that Lance Armstrong was GAINING ADVANTAGE through CHEATING, by the strategic exploitation of his very BLOOD (turning “lemons” into “lemonade”)? Through his dirty “victories” in the Tour de France he gave new meaning to “Blood and Soil.”

        2. different clue

          We don’t have a Walmart where I live, so I have never been in one even for a field trip just to see. So I don’t even know: do they carry things made by brand-name maker-vendors? Do other stores carry things made by the very same maker-vendors? What if enough millions of “show-solidarity” people who could afford to pay the higher price for something in a non Walmart store bought that something in the non Walmart store instead? Would shifting that bussiness from Walmart to nonWalmart for “the same” maker-vendors remove the incentive for the maker-vendors to sell to Walmart and give them a rising incentive to sell to nonWalmart more exclusively? In other words, could it be possible to shrink and then dry up the stream of brand-name supplies reaching Walmart to begin with, and leave Walmart with nothing to sell but cheap Chinese crap unless/until Walmart adopts rest-of-the-industry labor practices and prices to maker-vendors?

      1. Lambert Strether

        I think so, but — totally from the Barcalounger!!!! — it’s not clear to me that their place is at the front lines (though of course the supply chain is not a line but a network). Remember there are a lot of Walmart workers who are on welfare because Walmart doesn’t provide a living wage (meaning that a taxpayer subsidy is one reason “every day low prices” are so low). So, foreclosure defenses, defenses against usury, heck, even making life hard for Walmart at the local zoning board and getting letters to the editor into the papers) all have their place as support operations.

        1. BobS

          Only from the frontlines if invited by the Walmart workers. I’m pretty sure Occupiers recognize their mutual interests, but I’m also sure ‘middle’ America (which includes those Walmart strikers) doesn’t always share that class awareness, in the particular sense of the Occupy movement due to it’s portrayal in the mainstream media. This is an opportunity (as is virtually every labor dispute) to build bridges and make new allies.
          Especially so in the case of Walmart, which is a symbol as well as a cause and symptom of much of what is wrong in this country and the world.

    3. Walter Wit Man

      Thank you for the history reminder. I’m just awakening to a more critical look at America’s labor history during this period.

      I’ve also been looking at how National Socialism fit into this picture because it’s not the way I was taught (I previously thought they were simply “fascists”).

      Couldn’t one describe the Wagner Act and it’s interpretation in similar terms to what the National Socialists did in Germany? The Germans “outlawed” unions but then created a system to replace it. So in effect the National Socialists in Germany heavily regulated labor and labor’s ability to strike, etc., like America, and also gave workers a a benefit like Social Security, the 40 hour work week, etc. Didn’t the U.S. do pretty much the same thing as Germany and maybe Germany’s system was more pro worker? Would love to see an honest comparison and your reminder about what the Wagner Act really was is helpful.

      [Also, interesting to note the National Socialists outlawed other parties. It's seems like a "fascist" thing to do, but at the time even the left wing socialists were ready to give up on electoral politics as a joke and a trick by the capitalists to control things (which was and is a fair description of the American electoral system).]

        1. Walter Wit Man

          I’m just trying to figure out the history and breaking through the propaganda. How is that flirtation?

          The victors censored history and now tell us that if we try to uncover the censored history we are “flirting” with danger and to just take their word for it that they were evil.

          I think for myself and don’t just take people’s word for it. In fact, when I come across a hard sale like this it makes me assume the people engaging in the hard sale are lying.

          I’m not worried that I’m going to become a racist or advocate genocide or something, so I’m going to go ahead and read about the truth rather than deceive myself. I’m an adult and I don’t need to lie to myself to protect myself. Plus, we aren’t really protecting people by lying to them and hiding the truth.

          1. Walter Wit Man

            Wanting to know more about Golden Dawn or the National Socialists does mean I advocate their beliefs/policies.

            Suspecting they have been victims of propaganda does not mean that I advocate their beliefs/policies.

            The fact there is such significant propaganda against them is interesting though and makes me curious as to what the truth is . . .

          2. Walter Wit Man

            Wanting to know more about Golden Dawn or the National Socialists does NOT mean I advocate their beliefs/policies.

            Uggh. Bad time for a typo.

          3. Walter Wit Man

            But if the National Socialists took power away from private central bankers and issued their own fiat currency and Golden Dawn advocates something similar for Greece then there are a few policies I probably agree with.

          4. Valissa

            Suspecting they have been victims of propaganda does not mean that I advocate their beliefs/policies.

            The fact there is such significant propaganda against them is interesting though and makes me curious as to what the truth is . . .

            WWM, I think these are very important points! I am the same way myself. As soon as my ‘spidey-senses’ pick up the propaganda vibe I am immediately suspicious and curious to know more about a group and what they represent in the collective consciousness. Who supports them and why, who dislikes/hates them and why, and what role the group is taking on within the larger society, what are the power dynamics at play… all make for an interesting sociological study. People belong to political groups for all kinds of reasons and it’s much less often about ideology than most people think (there are many reasons people join groups). The media, however, always homes in on the most extreme and ideological of any group, so it’s natural for people to adopt those as representational of the group as a whole and react emotionally. It takes mental effort to detach from that and seek the truth more objectively.

            “The test of intelligence is the ability to hold two opposing views in the head at the same time and still retain the ability to function”. — F. Scott Fitzgerald

            “From their experience or from the recorded experience of others (history), men learn only what their passions and their metaphysical prejudices allow them to learn.” — Aldous Huxley

          5. Paul Tioxon

            While you are at it, can you tell if the Libertarian National Socialist Green Party has any possible basis other than another not so well meaning Third Party operating now in America? Talk about a really bad Grand Bargain!

          6. Valissa

            OMG, that’s a real group and not a creation of The Onion http://greenpolitics.wikia.com/wiki/Libertarian_National_Socialist_Green_Party

            LNSGP associate Craig Smith called the party “in many ways, a postmodern reinterpretation of the historical NSDAP”, and said it “is about bringing about a more traditional form of society and government while keeping a progressive attitude regarding human quality as well as cultural and scientific achievement.”

            WTF?!?! yup, I’m speechless on that one!

          7. Walter Wit Man

            Good comment Valissa.

            Re Germany and WWII

            The U.S. took a very hostile attitude to the Germans right away and tried to rewrite their history. Here’s a 10 minute film from 1946 evidently shown to occupying American soldiers that just reeks of propaganda:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1v5QCGqDYGo

            “Directed by It’s A Wonderful Life’s Frank Capra and written by Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, produced by the United States Information & Education Division of the Army Services Forces in 1946, this authentic film proposes, “War with Germany ends in victory, victory leads to peace … Sometimes … Sometimes not.”"

        2. ZygmuntFraud

          A book on WWI (the Great War) mentioned recently here at NC (Europe’s Last Summer, as I recall) said that Lenin was let pass “incognito” through Germany onwards to Russia around 1916 or 1917. Apparently, as they say, the aim was to have a weak Russia that would not defend too hard on Germany’s East flank.

          I read about Messerschnitt around 1840, German foreign minister. He was not left-wing. He was closer to a right-wing monarchist.

          Who are these Germans that let Lenin pass by train incognito? Did they not see that a marxist-leninist Russia could threaten the system of private property in Germany?

          For me, it’s a puzzle.

          1. LeonovaBalletRusse

            ZF, Who were these Germans…” they were International Money Masters in NYC, so it has been alleged, and there’s a good case for that conclusion.

          2. different clue

            Since the Wilhelm 2nd government was entirely intact at that time, and since the wartime German military establishment must have had some input into actions like that, I would suppose the Wilhelmine establishment with military support or acceptance decided to send Lenin and his helpers into Russia.

            I remember reading somewhere that General Ludendorf felt that Lenin’s little band could perhaps destabilise Russia enough to take it out of the war and let Germany focus all its force on the Western Front.

          3. ZygmuntFraud

            LenovaBalletRusse, Yes, I’ve read on the Web that Lenin (even Marx) was financed by bankers.

            Wilhelm was the Kaiser, I suppose …

            different, Ben Kingsley (famous actor) played Lenin in that famous train journey; part 1 on Youtube (1988) at:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhtpPBkGwT8

            The monarchist 1800s Foreign Minister was really Klemens von Metternich who worked for the Austrian Empire as a diplomat, for example at the time of the Vienna Congress after Napoleon’s “rampage” in Europe.

      1. Aquifer

        “…. at the time even the left wing socialists were ready to give up on electoral politics as a joke and a trick by the capitalists to control things (which was and is a fair description of the American electoral system).]

        And it is precisely this sadly persistent, self defeating attitude which ensures that the right wing will keep control of that process ..

        To tweak an old phrase – the best way for the Right to triumph is for the Left to do nothing – for the left to abandon the electoral process is to leave it in the control of the duopoly – and how has that been working out for us? Or, as Lambert might say – “What could go wrong/”

        1. Walter Wit Man

          The ‘militant faction’ of the U.S. Socialist Party made the argument that change through electoral politics was impossible and other methods of revolution were necessary:

          http://archive.org/details/VoteyesSocialistPartyMembersVoteyesInTheReferendumOnThe

          In this short pamphlet the militant faction states why they will sign the 1934 Declaration of Principles but objected to much of it. It is interesting we are going through a very similar thing now and I have to say I’m with the militant faction–what good is electoral politics now? It’s actually counterproductive to give legitimacy to an unjust and rigged system.

          They faced the same thing in Wiemar Germany.

          1. Aquifer

            WWM – it is only as good as we make it – i suggest to you that one of the reasons we are where we are is because too many have abandoned the system – either altogether by not voting or by using it for other than what we could, indeed, use it for – to get what we want and need, instead of using it to back “our team” or to keep “the other team” from winning … A politics of fear as Stein would call it …

            Of the lefties who do pay attention to the issues, a bunch feel the same way about voting – illegitimate (which is pretty funny, IMO for a politics of democracy …) so we have a situation where Right wingers vote, and Left wingers march – and here we are ….

          2. LeonovaBalletRusse

            Aquifer, R, D, & I disaffected should vote for Stein en masse, so that an Other Voice may be heard in protest, in dissent to the lying cheating System featuring the One and Only Party.

            This “Other Voice” is the voice of what Ron Paul et al. call the Second Party, since Obama and Romney constitute the One and Only Party with the “Unitary Executive” Voice of banksters and war profiteers for 1% Lebensraum.

          3. different clue

            One doesn’t have to “only” vote. There are all kinds of other things one( or many ones) can do at the same time. One (or many ones) can engage in all kinds of economic resistance and rebellion, in the building up of Free UnMarket CounterEconomies all over, etc.
            Also, political legitimacy may not be “disappearing”. It may be retreating from the Federal level to smaller levels . . . States, Counties, Cities, Townships . . . where elections can still have all kinds of relevance.

    4. MontanaMaven

      Staughton Lynd is one of my heroes. He and his wife have led a dedicated life that I am humbled by. I am reading his “Wobblies and Zapatistas” right now. When he was denied tenure at Yale in the 1960s he said of the Ivies: “…a training in snobbishness, in provincial ethnocentrism, in a cynical and manipulative attitude towards human beings.” So he and his wife went back to school and became lawyers and worked on the front lines of worker direct actions in the steel towns.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        MM, for this reason I rejected Harvard for the Ph.D., and became an outsider ever after. To reject Harvard is to position yourself beyond the Pale of Settlement.

      1. Richard Kline

        So mac, the rocks in you head are grinding audibly. In good times of course that’s exactly what ripped off workers do. Off course Walmart often acts in really poor markets with few other jobs, so there’s not much choice. The reason we see organizing now is that the _economy_ is so bad that those abused Walmart workers have no where to go but Tobacco Road or Shelterville if they do quit. This is why mass organizing has it’s breakthroughs in _bad times_ not in good. It seems counter-intuitive, but it’s not, it’s the way things work.

  5. Brindle

    Police State/Racism:

    —”Supposedly, he stop me for an air freshener hanging in my window, but then went on talking about theft at the mall,” Augustus (@seimoneaugustus) tweeted.

    “And the fact that my car was at the mall with out of town (Louisiana) plates, WTH I thought this was a free country!

    “I didn’t know you can only drive minnesota cars to a minnesota mall and if not you must be stealing or doing something illegal.

    “He made at @monnie22 (Lynx teammate Monica Wright) cut her phone off, and then when asked for his info, he got crazy.

    “Said he would write a ticket for the car freshner if I reported it! WOW! Well…
    “So my air freshener allowed shoplifters to have a field day at the mall this morning!”

    The Lynx returned to practice Wednesday in preparation for Game 1 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday at Target Center.

    http://www.twincities.com/sports/ci_21743770/minnesota-lynx-police-deny-racial-profiling-seimone-augustus

  6. scott

    I know some pro cyclists, and dabbled a bit in it my self. They saying about the elite riders: “There are two types of riders at that level, those that have been caught doping and those that will”. This may be sour grapes from the lower tier racers, but history seems to be on their side.

    The goal of the sport is to find a doping/drug that they don’t have tests for yet, and hope you can win for a few years before a test is developed.

    1. Richard Kline

      Which is a shame because stage-race cycling is really fascinating to watch. But yeah, it’s completely broken. Like quite a few other sports. Like nearly all of them. Which is why I didn’t watch 5 seconds of Olympics. If we live in a world where nearly every ‘winner’ cheats, what does that say if we watch? Or worse, applaud? To me, it’s better to take up solo sailing than to sit in a stadium worshiping a lie.

      Would anyone seriously want their kid or best friend to go into a sport like what pro cycling has become? What do you say to them other than don’t? “Be different,” I guess. “You’re better than that.”

      1. Garrett Pace

        You do recognize that the lie is imposed upon them by the public, right? Competitors compete, physically and chemically. It’s our own “old fashioned” notions about grit and determination and fulfilling our natural potential etc. that trips things up.

        People that don’t like pumping their bodies full of chemicals find other things to do with their lives, though they’d better eat organic too if their serious about the chemicals.

        1. Richard Kline

          You realize the utter sociopathy of what you just wrote? No, let me rephrase that: You _don’t_ realize the socipathy of what you just wrote Garrett. Those ‘competitors’ you refer to/fantasize about/count yourself among aren’t competitors. They certainly aren’t involved in any ‘sport. Sports have rules and boundaries; there’s an expectaction of mutual respect, at least at a bsic level. Those ‘psychos’ to whom you actually refer are assassins who don’t care what they have to do to get the money and the podium, who’ll ride right over your dead face to get there, who don’t care who gets hurt. They’re not ‘competing.’ In their own fantasy realms maybe, but in the real world their out there sticking a shiv in the back of the buy next to them. Competitors like you, skuuuuuse me them, ‘comepte themselves’ right into a barred cell with small windows or a coffin. We don’t need them.

          We don’t need psychos like that in our sports, in our offices, in our neighborhoods, and in our lives. You and the rest who respect no rules, no boundaries, and nobody who’s not crazier than you call all find a nice, small desert island as your coventry, and ‘compete’ yourselves down to the last man standing. But the real world hasn’t got space or time for your kind of psycho-games with no limits. In the real world some people are better than others on a given day, and those who don’t win accept that and everybody lives with each other. In Vialville, some crazies don’t accept that they didnt’ get the prize. But that isn’t a lie, that’s the way things are. It’s crazies who can’t accept that they didn’t win who poison the well for absolutely everybody else in society. . . . It’s us or you, Garrett. You can leave.

          1. different clue

            If doping is ubiquitous throughout high level sports, and Garrett is merely pointing that out, how does accusing
            Garrett of psychopathy for merely pointing it out help anything? Perhaps it is time to admit that competitive high-level sports is an excercise in ritual psychopathy?

            And that non-psychopaths should stop watching or supporting or caring about high level competitive sports?
            Or at least those sports which are based on ubiquitous doping?

          2. Garrett Pace

            Richard,

            I’ve made lots of comments in this thread about Armstrong, and if you’ve read through them hopefully you’ll agree that we aren’t so far apart in our views.

            The price athletes pay for success nowadays is very high. Two generations ago I probably would have been okay with my boys playing college football; now even high school football may be too dangerous to the brain and body.

            There’s an arms race just the same as in geopolitics, but in a closed system there’s only so many dimensions where you can compete legitimately, and eventually everyone will have to decide whether they are going to cheat or find another job/hobby.

            I’m still waiting for the day where “competition” starts to include factors external to the event itself, and victory becomes a matter of violence and intimidation. Though in certain circumstances that may have already happened.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9waq6BCQyOQ&t=3m8s

            (Not that the Raiders “should” have won. Who even cares anyway.)

            This is the pernicious effects of “ethics”, as you so enthusiastically posted elsewhere. The problem is that the ethic is only to appear you are following the rules, and not get caught. You’ve heard Jim Rome’s famous couplet:

            “If you’re not cheating
            you’re not trying.”

            Nothing admirable about that. As has been pointed out elsewhere, it turns decent men into hypocrites, and the ones who aren’t genuine psychopaths have a very hard time living with themselves. Like poor Floyd Landis, who turned on the one guy who was wholeheartedly trying to help him – not help him to win, but to be true to himself and be able to look in the mirror.

            For me, “competition” as such becomes inappropriate the moment feelings and emotions become negative. That leaves me well outside the mainstream. Modern sports leagues pretty much leave me cold, but I recognize it isn’t just the socipaths on the field that are the problem, it’s also the yahoos in the stands and their worship of success regardless of how it is won.

            That’s what I’m getting at.

      2. jonboinAR

        That’s why Barry Bonds, Mark Mcquire, Sammy Sosa, and Roger Clemens, et al, are more or less forgotten men, despite the ridiculous numbers they put up. Everyone knows that those numbers don’t mean anything. So the long treasured home run record has been hopelessly desecrated and probably won’t be discussed by baseball fans too much anymore.

    2. Lambert Strether

      Sounds rather like Race to the Top, doesn’t it?

      * * *

      There was an NC post at some point in the not-too-distant past on tournaments, their ubiquity and ill effects. That would seem to be the right frame for a lot of pictures right now, but I can’t find the post. Readers?

    3. Garrett Pace

      You can tell who the dopers are, because they win races.

      Anti-doping rules are a way to put honest people (and the more health conscious) at a competitive disadvantage, while maintaining a pleasing ideal of “hard work and determination get you there” to the public.

      It’s no surprise at all that competitive people will compete in all facets of a sport, including chemically. Seems like nowadays, preparation for top-flight athleticism is so rigorous, stultifying and time consuming that you need to be mentally ill in order to put up with it. Or at least that mental illness provides a competitive advantage.

      1. anon y'mouse

        your point seems illogical to this pleb. if no one involved were using chemical substances to enhance performance (i take your earlier point about food, although only somewhat), some one of them would still finish first.

        apologism is really unnecessary.

        1. Garrett Pace

          The doping isn’t the problem, it’s an unpleasant side effect. The problem is the application of ethics to the situation: plaudits go to the victor regardless of what they do, so long as they aren’t caught. Everything is fair game, and thwarting officialdom is a separate area for competition.

          That’s what I am trying to say when I describe top-flight competitors as nigh-mentally ill. When the money and prestige are so great, all the competitors are physical genetic freaks with enormous work ethics, differentiation becomes more and more difficult.

          Ergo, chemicals.

          See, chemicals are still viewed as a short cut but they aren’t. You’d better still be willing to work like an animal if you want to wear the garlands.

          1. Garrett Pace

            Aren’t sporting events a microcosm? Just like war, only not at all like war, because both sides submit to arbitration by third parties (referees and officials), and the scope of the conflict is a closed system with rules that define the terms of mastery.

            We like to pretend that war is “restrained” too, that there’s a way for us to murder each other in a civilized manner. A foolish thing, when the essence of war is the pursuit of policy after talking and compromising – “civilization” has failed.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EE2TZAdoaS8&t=1m18s

            Maybe our goal is to make war more like sports, just as we make sports more like war. Never the twain shall meet?

          2. Richard Kline

            Garrett: “The problem is the application of ethics to the situation: plaudits go to the victor regardless of what they do, so long as they aren’t caught. Everything is fair game, and thwarting officialdom is a separate area for competition.” When someone thinks that ethics _are_ the problem, it’s that person and their thinking who are the real problem. To everyone. At a very high level. I’m not joking. Anyone who has discarded ethics is more dangerous to the health of others than a loaded gun with no safety.

            And yes, if a putative sporting activity has become a deathmatch between manics and socipaths, it’s time to shut it down. And no, we shouldn’t applaud winners just because they finish first, even fairly. We should applaud them because of how they compete: the results are secondary to the effort involved. That is a function of what the word ‘sport’ means. Psychos who’ll do anything to win including smoking their mammas and cutting off a series of wives who can’t live the lie with them anymore should be cut out of the media, the sport, and society. Then they’ll finally be where the belong.

          3. jonboinAR

            Sport has always been a little stand in for war, has it not, a “civilized” way to satisfy our need to either best each other or watch while another bests another? I remember once going to “Fight Night” (boxing)at an indoor arena. After about the fourth match I realized a pattern: The two men traded punches until one began to get the better of the other. From then on the one losing, his face began turning redder and redder and he got more and more bleary-eyed until he was finally just getting the hell pounded out of him. Sometimes he made it to the final bell still on his feet, sometimes not. After that I didn’t like to watch boxing that much (I had always enjoyed it when it came on TV). But I still like football. GOOD HIT!!! We’re a barbarous lot, humans, more like chimps than gorillas.

      2. LeonovaBalletRusse

        GP, Sports, Finance, Entertainment/CelebrityWorship: It’a all about money to the doped “winners” and their Organized Crime bosses. Without “betting” rackets for insider Top Dog Winnings, Sports and Finance would be left to die. No doubt they are all connected in one opaque gangster loop: a “Mcmafia” daisy chain.

  7. Richard Kline

    Lance Armstrong has been a stone obvious doper for his whole career. Really; it hasn’t been subtle. He’s been outed with stuff time and again and lawyered his way past it. He’s done, a demonstrated disgrace. Everyone in his circle in a position to know has sworn an affadavit against him. His samples have been retested and found to have the obvious EPO in them from the beginning. His association with a known ”dope and masking agent’ doctor has been financially demonstrated over an extended period.

    Seriously, the man is the most grotesque fraud in memory. There was never a possibility of ‘vindication.’ I don’t know why people fall for the myth and worship moral catastrophes like this guy. Look, sports performane is terrific; I love it, watch it, work out, and play within my capacities (which are quite limited). Dudes like Armstrong excrete in the face of everyone who ever went out and tried to succeed at physical performance: that is his failing. He’s robbed the rest of us.

    We’ll have to put up with his pathetic whining for years because the media eats up the guy, which is further insult. But please, let’s quit buying, and applauding the fraud. It’s like hoping that JPMorgan will be vindicated on their Whale’s Tale. Who are we really rooting for here, and why? Real performance doesn’t look like powering up Alpe L’Huez like you’re loaded, or all the financial crimes and misrepresentations we’ve seen over and over again. Faked books and faked medals are spawned from the same mentality. I’m just sayin’ . . . .

    1. Tim Mason

      I have no knowledge of Armstrong’s career prior to his exploits in the Tour de France, and didn’t really follow those with much attention. The Tour has been a cess-pit for years, and anyone who wanted to make a name there had to swallow sludge. I’m not sure what the term ‘cheat’ would even mean in that context. Check out the Wikipedia page at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doping_at_the_Tour_de_France

    2. amateur socialist

      This has been a bitter pill to swallow here in my adopted hometown of Austin. I genuinely admired the guy and like Yves mentioned above, hoped it would all be shown to be untrue.

      But 26 sworn depositions including 11 former teammates? Oy vey Lance retire to the hill country ranch and sell bikes. Maybe in a decade you can find a job doing commentary ( or comic relief lol) There is a fork in you you’re done.

    3. barrisj

      Fully concur, as anyone who has reviewed His Lanceness’ pre-cancer Tour rides could see, the guy is basically a road-racer who dropped out twice from early TdF competitions when the Tour hit the mountain stages. Then – mirabile dictu! – he comes back from cancer treatment and smokes the self-same mountains. Armstrong learned the amazing blood-boosting properties of EPO when it was given to him as a cancer treatment adjuvant, and decided to incorporate the drug in his “training” regime, and later to instruct his domestiques in the proper use and positive-test avoidance techniques. So many of his teammates had later tested positive for PEDs, or copped to their usage, that to even suggest that His Lanceness was above the fray and raced clean is wholly risible and insupportable. “I never failed a drug test”…”I am the mosted drug-tested athlete on the planet”…yadda-yadda, blah-blah. The man has and continues to employ a vast army of PR types, lawyers, and divers apologists who are rapidly mobilised to bring the hammer down on anyone who suggests Armstrong dopes; he had bullied and intimidated Tour riders who tried to call him out, including Greg LeMond, the last American rider to cleanly win the TdF. Hiding behind his “I fought cancer and won” and his multi-million dollar foundation, Armstrong had as well clearly won over the media, and especially the TdF commentators for US telly Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen, who have remained steadfast in their loyalty and continued deification of the man. Some in the cycling world are now arguing that His Lanceness should keep his TdF titles, but stick an asterisk upon them, because the whole peleton rode dirty, so how can a winner be selected amongst the also-rans? Best solution is simply to vacate those seven TdFs, and turn the page.
      The UCI also has been put in an awkward position, even perhaps complicit in Armstrong’s doping offences, as they did little or nothing to investigate innumberable charges and accusations brought against Armstrong over the years. The fact that Armstrong actually made a huge monetary contribution to the UCI certainly weighs heavily on its response(s) to the Armstrong doping issues. Good riddance to a POS who wilfully exploited cancer and its sufferers in furtherance of his cycling career.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        barrisj, “Lance Armstrong: Destroyer of Worlds.” Is he going to pay damages to the poor schmucks who really did win the Tour de France all those years, without resorting to “bad blood tricks?”

        Lance Armstrong should be put in stocks in Paris: to be mocked, reviled, screamed at, perhaps stoned. Lance Armstrong did nothing but WREAK RUIN on the Tour de France and all who “lost” to him and his corrupt “team” for years and years. ARREST HIM. Put him to everlasting shame.

        1. YouDon'tSay?

          Too bad the “poor schmucks who really did win that year” were almost certainly doping too in a futile effort to keep up. Say what you will, but doping has always been endemic to professional cycling. How else to explain bulemically thin young men performing super-human feats of strength and endurance for three weeks in the mid-summer heat over epic mountain passes at incredible speeds year after year. Oh yeah, fucking magic. And “hard work.” Kind of like the “miracle” of debt-based capitalism.

          1. LeonovaBalletRusse

            YDS, that may be true, but Lanslut was the biggest fraud, the most egregious liar for years, the most preposterous braggart anent his superior “virtues.” Maybe his backers-on-the-take are leaders of the Liar’s Club or the Hellfire Club. Do you think they placed bets on how long he could get away with it? Did one of his backers pull the plug on Lanslut out of spite? Who will ever know why the world has reached the apex of deceit in our “low dishonest decade” (W.H. Auden: “September 1, 1939″)?

      2. YouDon'tSay?

        barrisj,

        Agreed with all the facts of your post. I’m a long time cycling guy and knew from the very start that something wasn’t right with the Armstrong “miracle.” That said, I have to commend the sheer ingenuity of the whole thing and really look forward to finally hearing the full story behind it all. I mean really, at some point the guy was legitimately in danger of losing his life, and a long time after that it was seriously in doubt as to whether he would ever return to professional cycling in any capacity at all. But then, miraculously, it obviously occurred to Armstrong and not a few unnamed others that this whole thing could be “leveraged” and turned into an *opportunity* – of EPIC proportions as it turns out – and the rest, as they say, is history. Now THAT is the story I want to hear!

      3. Richard Kline

        So barrisj: ” . . . [A]nyone who has reviewed His Lanceness’ pre-cancer Tour rides could see, the guy is basically a road-racer who dropped out twice from early TdF competitions when the Tour hit the mountain stages. Then – mirabile dictu! – he comes back from cancer treatment and smokes the self-same mountains. Armstrong learned the amazing blood-boosting properties of EPO when it was given to him as a cancer treatment . . .” Hasn’t it been AMAZING, yes, that all the Lance worshippers _NEVER_ refer to this fact? That Armstrong had years of performance history that in no way pointed to top international success until he was given EPO for medical reasons and then *wham-bam* he’s waaaay out front. People simply want to believe the lie, so liars lie to them. The Epic(demic) of Lance has been nothing more than that. It drives me mad to see people look away from simple fact.

        1. barrisj

          Richard…the wanker finished a poor third in the 2000 Olympics, where drug-testing was/is far more stringent than any UCI-sanctioned events, as we have already noted. He also had a very poor 1996 Olympics: 6th in the time-trials, and 12th-place finish in the road race. In fact, His Lanceness had an above-average caree at best up to his bout with cancer, then – bloody hell, look out! The notion that Armstrong went from an OK straight-course road racer to an over-the-top mountain climber because of his alleged “unusually high lung capacity”, or “low basal heartrate” or “high-tech training regimes” is sheer folly. A cheat once and forever.

    4. gordon

      The anti-doping testing and disqualifications are starting to remind me of the old amateur/professional debates and blow-ups we used to have when the Olympics was supposed to be “amateurs only”. What the Hell, the toothpaste is out of the tube. Roll on legal doping, and we’ll learn to cheer for the GlaxoSmithKline team, competing with the Johnson & Johnson, Roche, Novartis, Pfizer etc. teams. Yea!

      1. YouDon'tSay?

        Agreed. Make it all legal, bring it out into the light of day, let ‘em sign all the necessary legal disclaimers, shoot ‘em up like horses (which they essentially are), and let ‘em race. Divide ‘em up into classes if you want to retain “purity” (Stock, ProStock, TopFuel (love it!), etc.), but let ‘em race!

        Armstrong? His main (not inconsequential) sins are that he’s a hypocrite and and a liar. And that he’s more than likely a part of a rather extensive criminal conspiracy to cover up those facts as well. For that he should be admonished and prosecuted if warranted.

        The doping? He was just doing what his American corporate capitalist roots demanded that he do. Succeed at all costs, and damn the torpedoes, FULL SPEED AHEAD BOYS!

      2. LeonovaBalletRusse

        gordon, clever. Why not? “New” product roll-outs every month, with the bookies in London having “The Best Years of Our Lives.” Could give German “Formula 1″ in Greece new life as well! G-Sucks could make book to the stratosphere. It might even lead to a new way to Fed.

      3. Richard Kline

        So gordon and YouDontSay and Garret and the rest who are all in, I’ve got a better idea. Let’s just skip all the fake training. In fact, we can skip the race too. Just issue all the ‘competitors’ rifles and let them loose on the course. Last one left wins big. They made a mediocre movie on that this year. They made a better one a couple of years ago, ‘Tzameti.’ The promoters bet down to the one guy left, quite a good film, I’m sure you’re dying for others to get dying the same.

        But that’s not sport, society, or sanity. So as you’re applauding on insanity, I’d say we’re talking by each other at this point.

        1. Garrett Pace

          That is the logical conclusion of the arms race, isn’t it? Fiddling with a football and goalpost, offensive and defensive lines etc. is a sanitized version of war where “nobody gets hurt” and “everyone goes home happy”. Very paramilitary, only it also features the bewildering phenomenon of these physical freaks whining and crying to some pipsqueak in a striped shirt about his interpretation of past events and evaluation of consequences as defined by a set of arbitrary rules.

          Beowulf never had to do THAT. Bet Napoleon didn’t either.

          At some point you expect the people watching the spectacle will tire of sports with such arbitrary determinations of success, and throw their passion and support into those where might makes more right. We’re heading there:

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

  8. Max424

    re: Carlyle

    Anybody who makes large bets in China deserves what they get. If you happen to get lucky and make a killing, good for you. Say a prayer of thanks to the God of Long Shots. If you go busted, tough titties. That’s neo-liberal state sponsored monopoly capitalism, Chinese-style.

    Gambling in a rigged casino is great when the –central bank– operators prefer, nay, practically hand out guarantees that you will win.

    However, most rigged casinos, like the ones in Vegas, or the ones that dot our reservations, or the ones in certain foreign “places,” are designed not only to rob you blind, every time, but have carefully considered that even though you might get crushed, the juice of the event, the “action,” will be so sublime that you will become delirious, and immediately desirous of a return engagement.

      1. Max424

        Gambling in a rigged casino is great when the –central bank– operators prefer, nay, practically hand out guarantees that you will win.

        1. Aquifer

          Seems to me that selling folks on 401Ks, et.al. as a good idea was/is one of the biggest “fixes” of all time ….

          1. Max424

            Hey, even in the rigged casino where they want you to win, things can go sour fast, especially if you’re not one of their roll-out-the-red carpet, Platinum Card carrying members.

            Note: Certain Platinum players have been know to receive a 100% rebate on their loses, and then some.

          2. different clue

            What if 50 million not-yet-jobless people were to get wise to the 401k rackets and stop further contributions? Or not sign up in the first place? What if they were to cash out their 401ks prematurely and take the tax hit and excise tax penalty so as to invest the money in something useful in the meantime? Like debt paydown to zero? Or super insulating their houses (if any) and turning their yards into high-powered survival gardens and micro-orchards?
            And installing water-free scientific composting toilets in their houses (if any)? And skywater collection systems and multi-thousand-gallon storage tanks to harvest and store thousands of gallons of skywater for use on their Survivalist Urban Homesteads?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Max, “Chinese style” – High life, then the bullet bearing your name. The Chinese don’t mess around. That’s how we know Sheldon Adelson’s rules of order.

  9. dearieme

    I have plans to convert my bike to electric power since I’m not fit to cycle at the moment. By golly I’m looking forward to it.

    1. Richard Kline

      Re: Yves, I’m another long term ‘pollution mobile resistor’ here. The Pod discussed in the article looks intriguing, though. Weather proof is a biggie; I’ve been an all-weather bike commuter, ‘s a bitch. Had my shoulder permanently damaged in a vehicle-caused accident. Space for two bags of groceries? Count me as interested.

          1. Bert_S

            Should be. Main reason being it doesn’t rely on massive amounts of biomass that need to be refined somehow. They now have basically two different strains of algae – one that excretes ethanol and one that excretes bio-diesel. Since you aren’t growing something just to harvest and refine it, but the thing stays alive and makes product as long as you feed it CO2 and water, they claim 100 times the energy output – and associated low cost.

            They now have two routes to go – ethanol mixed for E85 cars (Brazil has some 100% ethanol cars) or bio-diesel that can be mixed with low-sulfer diesel or used straight. (half the cars in europe are diesel)

            This gives them a quick path to market and an easy transistion for us.

            They are also talking to power plant operators about feeding power plant CO2 to the bio-reactors.

            So far they have spent $130 million, including the new demo plant in NM.

          2. Bert_S

            Technically, going diesel is much better than ethanol, but we have ethanol in the US now so at least for existing cars we get rid of corn ethanol. But 100% ethanol only has 2/3 the energy of gasoline, so mileage goes down by that ratio and CO2 emmision up nearly as much.

            Diesel cars is really the way to go for new cars – they are 30% more efficient than gas cars.

            An electric motor is 3X more efficient, but battery tech sucks.

    2. amateur socialist

      I bought an electric bike in June 2011 and have been using it pretty regularly for my 6-7 mile round trip commute. Since then my 2000 Passat has logged only 2500 miles, (about 200 miles/monthly) mostly grocery trips and bad weather days. Mission accomplished!

    3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      For getting around in a big city, a horse should be pretty handy – it’s biogradable, consumes no foregin gas, can get you to places no cars can, agile like a bike, and if he’s anywhere close to Mister Ed, a good conversation partner.

      And unlike bikes, they are renewable.

      1. Ruben

        One problem though : methane farting horses might accelerate global warming more than CO2 farting cars.

        1. different clue

          If methane is 10 times more effective a heat trapper gas than CO2 is . . . but the cars release 11 times more CO2 than the amount of methane the horses would release . . . then the cars would be overall net-releasing more warmygas than the horses would.

  10. Max424

    Headline you never want to see: “Obama Campaign Attempts to Quell Panic.”

    Too funny.

    And yet … accept too many sublethal blows and soon you have a mortal wound.

  11. jim3981

    Lance had raised over $400 million for cancer research. He had been gone after so many times and never failed a drug test.

    I think the elites are worried more about him funding LEGITIMATE cancer research than keeping his trophies.

    http://www.burzynskiclinic.com/

    1. YouDon'tSay?

      Lance was never more than a cash cow (and he damn well knew it all along). Now that he’s not? Go figure… Everybody loves a hero. Right on up til the crucifiction drama. Afterwards? We’ll see. Will he take it like a man, or keep whimpering like some trailer park trash bitch (which he descended from, after all) done wrong?

  12. Bill

    “The Chinese Soft-Shelled turtle urinates through its mouth”

    Another sterling example of Nature’s efficiency: Why waste a perfectly good orifice ?

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Ever notice that with gasoline-powered cars, the ‘intake’ and the ‘exhaust’ are so close to each other that each one is practically urinating through its mouth?

      I see a Chinese soft shelled turtle each time I see a car.

        1. Pure Argan oil

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  13. Max424

    Lambert, if you haven’t seen it, The Archdruid is up with Part II:

    http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-10-10/how-it-could-happen-part-two-nemesis

    Has John Michael gone crazy? Two US carriers get sunk by a handful of surface to surface cruise missiles, and the Air Force and Navy lose local tactical air superiority? Pshaw.

    Then again, you never know. It’s hard to follow the brilliant axiom of the illiterate American military genius and founder of the Klu Klux Klan, CSA Lieutenant General Nathanial Bedford Forest, “Get there firstest with mostest,” when you’re trying to be everywhere at once.

    1. Max424

      Make that the first Grand Wizard of the Klu Klux Klan. I’m not sure if Forrest actually founded the Klan. In fact, I’m not even sure that we can say with exactitude that he was the first Grand Wizard, although most people think he was. The history on this is pretty messy.

      Probably because the organization was so highly secretive.

      Also, I should note, the renowned Civil War historian, Bruce Catton, has taken umbrage with those who would claim that Bedford would have ever said something like, “get there firstest with the mostest.”

      I take umbrage with the umbrage. What is he implying, that Forrest was an idiot? I can think of two well respected military men who said the exact same thing, in fact, each repeated it as if it were a mantra, the only difference, one said it in Old French (with an Italian accent) and the other said it in Ancient Greek (with a Macedonian accent).*

      *Nappy and Alex, of course.

      1. Max424

        Hey, I’m just quibbling with the surface to surface thing. You would need at least 20 hits combined, not 5, to sink 2 carriers, according to my sources (which admittedly, aren’t admirals, but they’re not E-1s either).

        Also, the failures of the Navy in MC 02 have been overblown by the Liberal Media Establishment. Besides, it was just a game, and the Navy has made adjustments, just like any good football team does at halftime, when they’re getting trounced.

        Not that it matters. My guess is the Iranians have quite a few Dong-Feng 21 carrier killers in their missile arsenals. A 500 kiloton warhead impacting a carrier deck after a long vertical descent is going to blow the ship to smithereens.

        http://exiledonline.com/the-war-nerd-this-is-how-the-carriers-will-die/all/1/

        Ballistics. I keep saying, it’s all about ballistics.

        1. synopticist

          Ultimatelly, naval ships are big, warm chunks of metal, full of explosives, that can move at 30mph in only 2 dimensions. You cant really camouflage them, and you cant dig them in, but the technology to target them from 50 miles away at super-sonic speeds has existed since the mid-seventies. Pretty lousy fighting platforms actually.

          The Iranians have had 20 odd years to build a capacity to sink American carriers and close the straights afterwards. Unless they’re idiots, or completelly screw it up, they ought to start as favourites in a Persian Gulf war scenario.

  14. ohmyheck

    File under-”You Can’t Make This Stuff Up”…Title: “The Long, Sad Decline of Daily Kos Relevency”

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/10/09/1142436/-Long-sad-decline-of-DKOS-relevancy

    Quote:
    “Does it stand for Obama’s failed policies of Bush tax cuts, “drill baby drill”, Social Security cuts, Medicare/Medicaid cuts, attacks on teachers unions and $1T military budgets?…DKOS now is simply a howling mob of sycophants…”

    And then the howling mob of OBot sycophants goes and proves his point!! LOL!

    Here is one “honest answer”…

    “DKos’s position is helping Democratic candidates gain power. There is only one Democratic candidate running this year for the Presidency (excluding scenarios in alternative realities) Hence, DKos is going to support that candidate.
    Therefore, DKos supports Obama.”

    Hence, yes, DKos supports a 1 T Military budget. Therefore DKos supports cuts to SS/Medi. Hence, DKos stands for Bushs’s failed tax cuts. Therefore, DKos supports attacks on teacher’s unions…Because Obama said so!

    And I would want to remain a member of the Democratic Party because…???

    1. synopticist

      Because their opponents to the even-further right are an astonishingly evil bunch of lying c*nts.

      That’s it. That’s the only reason. It may not be enough for you, but there it is, anyway.

  15. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    To Cap Bank Sizes.

    It’s rare but both presidential candidates’ campaign theme songs are called ‘Breaking Up (Big Banks) Is Hard To Do.’

  16. Gareth

    The tactics of the Walmart workers are reminiscent of those employed by the IWW in the late 19th and early 20th century. The IWW did not sign labor agreements, but relied on direct action and wildcat strikes to address inequities and grievances. Current labor law is so restrictive to the benfit of the employer that the use of workers associations rather than formal unions will permit workers to apply the screws to companies who use just-in-time supply chains while sidestepping many of the handcuffs imposed by Taft-Hartley.

    1. Goin' South

      The IWW is still around, and still refusing to negotiate no-strike clauses. That was re-affirmed at our Convention just a few weeks ago.

      There was some experimentation with going for a certification election at a Jimmy Johns in Minneapolis, and that did give rise to a NLRB ruling in favor of the Wobs, but since then, it’s been back to direct action and solidarity unionism.

      The still popular IWW symbol, Sabocat (Sabotage+wildcat strikes), represents the Wob approach well. The IWW is now attracting a new generation of young workers tired of being exploited.

  17. 10Q

    “We have lost some of your money in a company led financially by someone who the British Journal of Criminology asserts fronts for the Sun Yee On Triad.

    “I believe this loss is insignificant because it give us a deniable, arms-length way to compensate organized-crime agents run by the spooks that our Booze Allen Hamilton holding is stuffed with. The modest cost of our fleecing will be amply compensated by corrupt MIPRS and no-bid black contracts for useless domestic surveillance systems.”

  18. ambrit

    Maam;
    In reference to “The Mystery of the Disappearing Comments;” could they have gone off on a vacation to Sunny Utah? (Remember Citizens! October is “Cyber Security Awareness Month!”)

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      No, the Mystery of the Disappearing Comments has nothing to do with moderation. You get a mod comment, when Lambert and I get around to look at them we approve the ones that are OK. It has not disappeared, it is in the NC backstage.

      We have Disappearing Comments, as in you submit them, they disappear into the ether. This is very troubling.

  19. Kos reader Billy Bob

    ohmyheck: “And I would want to remain a member of the Democratic Party because…???”

    I am Kos reader Billy Bob.

    As a Kos reader Billy Bob, I too once experienced a moment of doubt.

    It happened one morning, all of a sudden. For no reason, my mind started wandering uncontrollably, I started thinking about all those drone attacks, Guantanamo, the trillions of dollars handed over to for-profit insurance companies thanks to Obama Care, Iraq, Afghanistan, the trillions handed over to Wall Street…., in short, everything Kos had carefully trained us not to think about….

    For a few seconds I even considered not voting a second time for the God Emperor Obie One.

    But instead of giving in to this gloom and doom, I decided to take my concerns to Comrade Mar-Kos himself.

    That’s when he took me aside and told me the story that he had learned in a Special Report from the Wolf on CNN.

    When Obama was a young man, he was called upon to entertain a large crowd. He made his appearance as an equestrian, in a blue jacket, calf skin jodhpurs, and turned down boots, leading a magnificent black stallion in front of the audience.

    The only thing on the animal’s head was an elegant bridle, there was no bit over his mouth. Obama introduced the racehorse by the name Lord Dewsbury. And then the youthful Obama asked someone in the audience to supply him with a word at random. Someone called out “equator”.

    Immediately, slowly repeating one by one the syllables that Obama prompted aloud, the horse distinctly pronounced: “E…qua….tor…”

    The animal’s tongue, instead of being square like those of its’ peers had adopted the pointed form of the human tongue.

    This peculiarity, noticed by chance by Obama had convinced him to spend countless hours educating Lord Dewsbury who, like a parrot, had learned after years of work to clearly replicate any sound.

    Young Obama resumed the experiment, now soliciting complete sentences from the audience that Lord Dewsbury repeated after him. Soon, dispensing with its prompter, the horse volubly reeled off its entire repertoire, including a volley of proverbs, portions of fables, curses and truisms, recited haphazardly and with no of intelligence or understanding. This was all due to the intelligence, skill and hard work of the young Obama.

    At the end of this preposterous speech, Obama led Lord Dewsbury off stage, the animal still muttering a few nonsensical observations.

    At this point, after hearing this remarkable story that Comrage Mar-Kos had learned from the Wolf on CNN, I no longer had any doubts about the God Emperor Obie One.

    I am Kos reader Billy Bob, I will vote the Democrat.

    1. lambert strether

      C’mon. I know a Peter Pinguid Society “cognitive infiltrator” when I see one. You can’t fool me!

      Forward With The Obama! To Get One’s Nose Barely Above Water Is Glorious!

      1. Kos reader Billy Bob

        I’m not allowed to talk to people like you.

        Comrade Mar-Kos has warned us not to talk to anyone who uses expressions such as “Robama” or “Obomney”.

        1. Marsha

          I know – I was disappeared the other night when I posted VastLeft’s wonderful take-down of The Nation’s ridiculous endorsement of Obamney. I’ve wearing my disappearance from Daily Kos with pride – even two days later.

  20. Garrett Pace

    “Instead, its message has focused on painting Romney as a hardcore conservative — a label not easily applied to the former governor of MA, a traditionally blue state, who signed into law the template for the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare.”

    What a fascinating dynamic. I still don’t understand why Romney hasn’t run as a moderate – his Barry Goldwater impersonation is very unconvincing.

    But then maybe that’s the point. It’s a palliative to get the “base” out to vote, while everyone else recognizes it as a show and anyone who looks at his record can see what he’s been about in public service.

    More puzzling is this strenuous effort to paint such a flipflopper like Romney as “hard core” ANYTHING. Spend a whole year telling people Romney doesn’t believe anything and then this? Changing horses midstream.

  21. Aquifer

    Loved your comment about Buerkle – true, true, but that has to tell you how bad Maffei is, that she beat him …

    He won’t show up tonite because he figures Oswego Co. is Buerkle country and he doesn’t have the guts …

    Am planning on going to support Ursula – she IS pretty gutsy to show up ….

    This should be interesting ..

    1. bob

      I’m too far north tonight to make it. I was just looking for some coverage, and can’t find any.

      If you did go, was anyone recording it?

      How was the crowd?

      1. Aquifer

        Yeah, there was someone recording it, but don’t know who ..

        It was Buerkle country – she got the biggest applause, but Ursula did all right (this is her first political foray) and the crowd (room full, typical small town hall size) was polite, she got some applause …

        Biggest red meat was the “don’t want the fed gov’t interfering/running the show, the private sector is much better” routine and the “leaving all that debt to our kids” bit ….

        It was gutsy of Ursula to just show up and i think the crowd did appreciate that …. Good practice for next round ….

        1. bob

          I would have smacked around the moderator with those talking points.

          “why does oswego county and the chamber contiune to offer tax free parking for PE while they rape and pillage? Former taxpayer funded nestle and birdseye pay outs to PE in mind.”

          syracuse.com was running the headline about the “debate” with the subheading “Rozum- we’re not in cahoots” all day.

          Reporting at it’s finest.

  22. MontanaMaven

    Thanks for linking Vast Left’s dissecting of The Nation’s” editorial on voting for Obama. Lots of linky goodness for my friends sending me generalisms about his war record etc. The Nation as somebody said here should be The Onionation”. What drivel. Can’t believe I fell for all that. As a newbie to politics in 2004 I even went on the cruise. At least I got to sing Broadway show tunes with Molly Ivins and was snubbed by Calvin Trillin and told basically to get lost by Eric Alterman. But I did get into the private party in the penthouse. Katrina has great clothes. Ah, those were the days.

  23. kevinearick

    City of God

    To privileged church came rapidly for Christians, after the Great Persecution, when other religions were burned out. Constantine underwent a mysterious conversion experience. From then on, the imperial treasury provided funds for the building and extension of churches, the clergy enjoyed special privileges and exemptions. Intolerance of other religions became the norm. His adopted role was that of savior, to prepare humanity for the kingdom of God.

    Funny, what happens when an empire gets sacked. The US runs at the pleasure of a majority of robots, women keeping passive aggressive men as a buffer for capital against change coming from labor. Do you really think the rest of the world is going to accept Napoleon this time, or that labor is going to provide the US Navy with the technology required to enforce this rule of law? Try, try, try again.

    Job Integrity

    God has imprisoned everyone;
    You are God’s slave;
    Let no one split what God has put together;
    Love is a mirror;
    My yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is LIGHT;
    If God doesn’t discipline you, it means you are illegitimate;
    Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching;
    Keep a clear mind in every situation;
    Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business, working with your hands, and you will not need to depend on others;
    Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the lord enthusiastically;
    Those who use well what they are given, even more will be given;
    When someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required;
    The lord will deliver you from every evil;
    …until I humble your enemies, our needs must come last.
    (in other words, many hands makes light work)

    Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? Why is life given to a man whose way is hidden, whom God has hedged in? Blessed is the man whom God corrects, For you will have a covenant with the stones of the field, and the wild animals will be at peace with you.

    The faith, not the blood, of Abraham shakes the empire.

    Wisdom 11:21
    “God ORDERED all things by measure, number, weight” “It is through reason that we are men. For if we turned our backs on the amazing rational beauty of the universe we live in we should indeed deserve to be driven there from, like a guest unappreciative of the house into which he has been received.” “Science was forced to depart from the ancient was of thinking by the Condemnation of 1277 at the University of Paris. 219 condemned propositions of Aristotle. This was the Birth of Modern Science.”” A true Revolution is to destroy completely the past and build upon it something new. Since the Church is not only in the past but in all time, you must destroy the Church.”” Science in many ways replaced Faith and Man replaced God.”

    1. YouDon'tSay?

      I’m almost with you, but just a little too deep once again for one of such limited understanding as myself, K-Man.

      What I DO know, is that if I hear “America’s Navy, A Global Force for Good,” on my local propaganda pipeline once more in the next few minutes I’m SIMPLY GONNA HURL!

      TRUTH: America’s Navy, A Global Force for Imperial Fascist Expansion and Death and Destruction to All Who Stand in It’s Way.

  24. charles sereno

    Re: Electric Motorcycles
    For several years, I’ve been driving a recumbent tricycle (with a rear view mirror, basket plus bungee cords, and 21 gears, top speed for me on the level ~15 mph). Costs about $1,000. Very practical, low maintenance, good exercise.

  25. LeonovaBalletRusse

    YVES, might the “tourniquet loosening” by the IMF be all of a piece with the news below, re the BRANDING of We the People the CATTLE now in effect?

    http://www.alternet.org/civil-liberties/unbelievable-ways-schools-are-now-monitoring-children-even-what-theyre-eating

    //” CIVIL LIBERTIES
    AlterNet / By David Rosen 46 COMMENTS
    Kids Tagged With RFID Chips? The Creepy New Technology Schools Use to Track Everything Kids Do — And the Profit Motive Behind It
    It can’t be called “education.”
    October 5, 2012 |

    The digital tracking and surveillance of school-aged kids has been growing.”//
    ——————————————

    Yves, and STILL “None Dare Call It Conspiracy?”

    ARREST THEM. WILLIAM K. BLACK: SPECIAL PROSECUTOR 2012.

    1. JTFaraday

      Not me. I scanned it up to: “Without the guidance of The Nation’s editors, you may have trouble seeing “what’s at stake,”" and then I got bored.

  26. Lambert Strether

    OUR Walmart mic checks HR drone in Bentonville:

    Note that the press did in fact report the interaction with reasonable accuracy, but missed the key fact of an Occupy-style human microphone.

  27. curlydan

    wow, the Black Agenda Report (in the Lambert ‘the trail’ links) hits it out of the park again on their post-debate analysis.

  28. briansays

    meanwhile
    Giants down 0-2 in playoffs
    win the last 3 games to got to NLCS
    first time in history!!!

  29. Kokuanani

    Jeeze, that story from the Philadelphia paper is depressing, not merely because so many of the “former Obama supporters” will vote for Romney, [I have no love for Obama], but because their reasoning [sic] is so damn STUPID.

    Now we know where the “low-information” voter resides. Pitiful.

  30. YouDon'tSay?

    Re, tonight’s VP debate. I don’t think I ever truly understood the phrase “having one’s balls in a vise” until I witnessed Biden’s performance tonight. However the whole thing ends up getting scored tactically after the fact, that was TRULY one angry man on display tonight. Good Christ!

  31. Foppe

    Project Syndicate just emailed me this:

    Speculation centers around Kenneth Rogoff and Robert Shiller. Rogoff, who received the 2011 Deutsche Bank Prize in Financial Economics, is a premier international economist. Shiller, who predicted the dot-com and housing bubbles, is a visionary political economist. Our latest Focal Point includes the best Project Syndicate commentaries from each candidate.

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