Links 8/21/15

Secrets of the species that thrive in the big city BBC

First wolf pack found in California in nearly a century Los Angeles Times (Chuck L)

Dozens of Dead Whales Are Washing Ashore in Alaska Wired (furzy mouse) :-(

NOAA: July warmest month in history MacroBusiness

President Jimmy Carter’s amazing last wish Vox

Welcome to Dismaland: A First Look at Banksy’s New Art Exhibition Housed Inside a Dystopian Theme Park Colossal. Resilc: “i want to see the Fed ride.”

Banksy Dismaland show revealed at Weston’s Tropicana BBC (furzy mouse)

Humans aren’t normal animals—we are unnaturally destructive super-predators Quartz. Resilc: “Especially those inside the Beltway.”

Insect oil: Bugs aren’t just about protein NutraIngredients (blintric)

Authors Group Seeks DOJ Probe of Amazon Wall Street Journal (EM). Advances have collapsed, particularly for what in the old days were mid-list books, which used to be bread and butter business for publishers. It really did not make economic sense for me to write ECONNED, and there is no way it would make sense for me to write a book now.

Google’s Project Sunroof shows your home’s solar potential for free Inhabitat (furzy mouse). I don’t trust Google on this. Why should I tell Google that much about my house?

Peak Smartphone: “Smartphone Sales Declined for the First Time in China” Climateer Investing

So Elon Musk’s Hyperloop Is Actually Getting Kinda Serious Wired (furzy mouse)

Doubt Is Raised Over Value of Surgery for Breast Lesion at Earliest Stage New York Times

Global markets tumble as commodity prices fall into ‘death spiral’ Telegraph

China factory data fuels slowdown fears BBC (furzy mouse)

Hong Kong and Chinese markets reel by midday in sell-off South China Morning Post

China’s Resistance to Reform May Grow With IMF Rejection Wall Street Journal

Gentle giant leads volunteers helping migrants in Hungary US News (furzy mouse)

Macedonia seals Greek border crossings to thwart migrants Financial Times

Grexit?

Greece crisis: PM Alexis Tsipras quits and calls early polls BBC

Greek crisis: Syriza rebels break away to form political group Guardian. We warned about a legitimacy problem….not that that was a hard call to make.

EU: Greece must stick with reforms post-election Reuters

The German Thatcher confirms bureaufascists’ plans! unbalanced evolution

New Records Show More US Involvement in Mexico Oil, Gas Privatization Efforts as Mexican Government Says “100%” Its Idea Steve Horn

Peruvian Congress authorizes shooting down drug planes Associated Press (furzy mouse)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

You Can’t Do Squat About Spotify’s Eerie New Privacy Policy Wired (Robert M). Of course you can do something. You can refuse to have anything to do with Spotify.

Google ordered to remove links to ‘right to be forgotten’ removal stories Guardian (furzy mouse)

The Puritanical Glee Over the Ashley Madison Hack Glenn Greenwald

Ashley Madison Revealed DataViz (Gabriel)

Imperial Collapse Watch

It’s here! Episode one of the War Nerd podcast Pando (Gabriel). As this stressed, the podcasts are being funded/produced outside Pando, but Pando is graciously promoting them. FWIW, we at NC looked at doing podcasts and we even bought equipment (!!!) but I came to understand it was more labor intensive than I’d thought: not just learning the software and sound editing (and I despise learning new software, and Lambert wants to be writing, not doing IT, although he graciously helps on that front when needed) and arranging the interviews, doing the research to come up with good questions….all to say this is a lot more work than you’d think. So if you are a little flush this month, please consider making a contribution.

The Former US Military Top-Brass Working for Companies Profiting from Drone Warfare VICE

Judge Pushes FBI to Look for Any Deleted Clinton Emails Wall Street Journal (Li). I love the judge referring to Clinton as “the employee”.

State Dept. Can’t Find Clinton Aides’ Blackberries Fiscal Times

The Defense of Hillary Clinton’s Email Server That She Dare Not Utter Atlantic. The contemporary version of Nixon’s “If the President does it that means it is not illegal.”

Bernie Sanders Draws Big Crowds to His ‘Political Revolution’ New York Times. The Grey Lady begrudgingly acknowledges that Bernie is getting traction.

Election 2016: Jeb Bush And John Kasich’s Work At Lehman Spotlights Different Revolving Door Between Business and Government International Business Times

Ben Carson’s Idea for Controlling the Border: Military Drone Attacks Fiscal Times

Herhold: Grading Carly Fiorina’s tenure at HP Mercury News. As I’ve said, she is hated in the Valley.

Rand Paul’s Plan to Buy an Election US News (furzy mouse)

US cinema chain Regal introduces bag search after attacks BBC. Only in America…

In Rochester, a shooting every 32 hours Democrat & Chronicle (martha r). From last week, still germane.

Man Accidentally Shoots Self While Guarding ‘Muslim-Free’ Oktaha Gun Store NewsOn6 (resilc)

Detroit-area mayor seeks ban on personal flamethrowers Associated Press

Police State

America does a better job of tracking bee deaths than deaths in police custody Boing Boing (resilc)

California Drought Is Made Worse by Global Warming, Scientists Say New York Times

Dow Falls 2.1% to 16991, Hitting Lowest Closing Level Since October Wall Street Journal

U.S. factories still haven’t recovered from the recession Washington Post

Mankiw’s Principles of Economics Part 9: Prices Rise When the Government Prints Too Much Money Ed Walker, emptywheel

Bad P.E. Managers Harder To Shake Than Patricia Cohen DealBreaker

Class Warfare

Why Bezos’ Denials About Exploitation at Amazon Sound Like Sociopathic CEO-Speak Alternet

Will we enslave robots? If so, prepare for their inevitable revolt. Fabius Maximus (furzy mouse)

Antidote du jour. Baby stingrays, courtesy @SciencePorn. I think they are kinda cute despite looking very alien.

baby stingrays links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

Print Friendly
Tweet about this on TwitterDigg thisShare on Reddit0Share on StumbleUpon0Share on Facebook0Share on LinkedIn0Share on Google+0Buffer this pageEmail this to someone

123 comments

  1. Jon

    I don’t trust Google on this. Why should I tell Google that much about my house?

    You’re not telling Google anything but your address. It already knows everything it needs to know to perform this calculation – in the cities where it’s done the high-resolution aerial scans to figure out your roof size/orientation, tree coverage, shade from nearby buildings, etc. Absolutely nothing you can do to stop it.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Don’t you need permission to take a picture of or shoot (using a camera) a person, unless you’re a celebrity, a public figure, if you want to use it for profit?

      A non-celebrity person’s house should be not different.

      1. john

        Early this morning I concieved such a logical inconsistency it blew my mind.

        How can prisons be good if socialism is bad?

        To keep it up, wasn’t the Catholic church the original socialists?

        Judges are people, and justice is fiction.

        Get used to it. Get ready.

          1. john

            Linguistics is fun.

            I once asked Chomsky how he thought we could be convinced to invade antartica ‘if it were decided tomorrow to be of geo-political significance.’

            His answer was fear.

            … Jeb!

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              That fear thing works for modern humans.

              It was following animals that the First Americans invaded North America. They would probably have invaded Antarctica chasing penguin meat.

          1. Skippy

            Inaccurate.

            The Jesus character wanted – his – ethic tribe – to act in accordance to – his – interpretations of_their_religious law, which was largely based on a more individualistic premises… e.g. the individual having a direct relationship with the creator[s rather than going through a middleman – bottleneck administrator.

            Skippy… I would caution using such devices to lend validity to equally convoluted social theory, as its all basically dynamic hybrid at the end of the day.

            1. John Merryman

              The problem is the premise is politically dissipative, not collective.
              God as an ideal to which society bends, not the essence within every being, is a far more politically effective model.
              Thus Christianity was politically repressed, until it was co-opted by Constantine, who envisioned the cross as a war totem.

                1. John Merryman

                  Gnostics in southern France. It is supposedly where the saying, “Kill them all. God will recognize his own.” Was made by the Pope in response to a question by the officer in charge as to how to distinguish the heretics from the proper Christians.
                  Otherwise the entire process after Constantine, as Christianity coalesced into Catholicism. Definitely a whitewashed era, if ever there was one.

                    1. John Merryman

                      It’s a brand. You have to open the package and understand how and why it was packed in in the first place.
                      Remember Constantine pre-empted it because it was popular. So the transition from a grass roots movement, based around a guy questioning authority, to the facade of authority, was a serious shift in priorities.
                      The Celtic church is about the last remnant of the original movement, which was far more pagan in its beliefs.
                      Father, Son and Holy Ghost as the Greek year gods. Past, present and future.

                      http://www.gutenberg.org/files/30250/30250-h/30250-h.htm

            2. JEHR

              Skippy, sorry that you missed the point by not watching the video. Patterson is a comedian so comedy is not “inaccurate” but a commentary on life as lived today.

        1. john

          If change is possible, it is only possible through communication.

          I must be free to say that 2+2=5 or that the moon landing was a psy op.

        2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          What is hard for Homo Sapiens to comprehend is that we humans would volunteer for slavery, and yet, chimps know enough to sign ”get us out of here.”

          I think the difference is education.

          1. john

            I think the problem with education is formalism.

            Not only are people chimps, but pre-western people, for lack of a better term, are remarkably like us.

            I hear the Pacific Indians would settle conflicts by pouring a vegetable oil on the fire (both chiefs on either side) and seeing who could afford to pour the most/ take the heat for the longest. In big disputes, they would sacrifice copper emblems (similar to the stone money of the Pacific… etc to infinity) until one side had to yield.

            1. john

              I hear the Indians (ganges) tell a story that the monkeys can talk, but don’t dare speak in fear someone would put them to work.

              1. Oregoncharles

                In Laos, they DO put monkeys to work, harvesting coconuts. We were told you have to be nice to your monkey, or it may set your house on fire. In all seriousness.

                Just to complete the local color, her father used to walk through the orchard carrying a machete vertically edge-out against his chest, to discourage pythons.

  2. vidimi

    re: the dead whales washing up on alaskan shores, a few months ago in the UK, the royal navy was conducting drills exploding ordnance in the waters off scotland. the shockwaves and noises killed dozens of whales, which subsequently washed up on the shore. i would start looking at whatever the pentagon is doing in the alaskan arctic to find the likely culprit behind this cetacean massacre.

    ETA: the article was from a few months ago, the incident was from 2011. it took three years to determine what killed the whales. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jun/24/royal-navy-bomb-explosions-mass-whale-deaths-report

    1. andyb

      It’s a lot more than whales that are dying off the US Pacific Coast. Millions of baby seals, starfish, salmon, etc. The normal sardine harvesting has disappeared in the last two years.
      Local scientists, and the Federal, State and Local governments are “at a loss” to explain the death of the vast majority of Pacific marine life. The one most probable cause can not be mentioned: Fukushima radiation, the death that will keep on giving for centuries.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I never thought one would be relieved to hear that dead whales were caused by military operations (instead of radiation).

      2. vidimi

        sure, fukushima could be a cause. but whales won’t just die or radiation per se; an autopsy would have to find cancers to make the link. or not, but then the radiation would need to be off the charts.

        1. optimader

          I think correct.. There obviously exists a distinction between acute radiation poisoning (ie killing directly, cessation of mitosis burns ectra..) and genetic damage related to elevated level chronic dosing. If I recall correctly I read, in the context of Chernobyl, chronic elevated will take something like 6 generations for adverse mutations to fully be revealed in higher level mammals. We’re at what, generationn 2-3?

          Patience, radiation’s manifestations have all the time in the world relative to human time scale.

          On the whales, we’ll eventually find out, tt’s been warm in those parts, could be some parasitic bloom, the whales in question are essentially large scale filter feeders

      3. Gio Bruno

        Fukushima may have some play, but the more likely cause is the trophic cascade (food chain).

        The Pacific Ocean has been warming to a point (+3.7 deg. F) that the bottom of the food chain (plankton, krill, etc.) is less robust . Cold water upwelling in the ocean is more nutrient rich than the extensive warming we are seeing now. Less krill less food for whales, sea lions, and other specie at the top of the food chain. Less food, more death/disease.

        That warm ocean water (ENSO: El Nino Southern Oscillation) has JPL weather scientists predicting extremely severe winter weather (wet storms) for California.

        Every drought ends with a flood.

      4. lord koos

        I doubt that Fukushima is the culprit. There is a huge blob of warm water off the west coast which is killing species from plankton on up… that global warming thing. The food chain is now broken, and Pacific Northwest salmon will be extinct soon, along with a lot of other northern species.

    2. Vatch

      Active sonar has been confusing, injuring, and killing whales and other cetaceans for more than a decade. Here’s an article from 6 years ago:

      http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/does-military-sonar-kill/

      Unfortunately for many whales, dolphins and other marine life, the use of underwater sonar (short for sound navigation and ranging) can lead to injury and even death. Sonar systems—first developed by the U.S. Navy to detect enemy submarines—generate slow-rolling sound waves topping out at around 235 decibels; the world’s loudest rock bands top out at only 130. These sound waves can travel for hundreds of miles under water, and can retain an intensity of 140 decibels as far as 300 miles from their source.

  3. rusti

    Regarding Project Sunroof, I usually defer to the nerds at Green Tech Media for this kind of news. There are already a number of tools out there to do this sort of estimation (at least three are mentioned in the comments), and there’s always a risk of garbage-in-garbage out simulation if Google’s local geometric data is out-of-date or wrong so hopefully people take the results with a grain of salt. As one GTM commenter mentions, the best starting point is to compare output from real locally installed systems using tools like PVCompare and to talk to local installers.

  4. bwilli123

    http://olivierblanchard.net/stop-calling-it-the-sharing-economy-that-isnt-what-it-is/
    “..Here’s an exercise: Imagine a world where nobody has full time jobs anymore, where everyone is a contractor. For some of you, that will probably seem like some kind of entrepreneurial utopia, a libertarian dream. In theory, sure. It sounds kind of cool because “freedom”… but then you realize that it’s the kind of model that we did away with in the early parts of the 20th century, and for good reasons: A “gig economy” cannot produce or support a healthy middle class. It doesn’t factor-in realistic retirement planning or college savings. Because it eliminates income security, it all but eradicates upward mobility. What you end up with is a 1% class (more like a 5%) and a 99% (95%) class, which isn’t super healthy for any economy, as history shows us time and time again. Fully realized, that gig economy looks like this for the 99%: selling and renting everything they possibly can to make ends meet and save a little money here and there. For the 1%, it cuts most of the cost out of running a business, which is kind of the point….”

    1. Jim Haygood

      ‘It’s the kind of model that we did away with in the early parts of the 20th century, and for good reasons: A “gig economy” cannot produce or support a healthy middle class.’

      … despite having created the middle class from whole cloth in the 19th century.

      But that was then, and this is now. Everyone must be an employee to facilitate withholding taxes.

      Is your Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification, 9 pages) current, comrade?

      1. cwaltz

        Ahhhhh, I remember those good ol days when employers were able to employ nimble little 7 year olds and a grown man
        could owe his soul to the company store. Let’s not play pretend the 19th century was not really a gig economy. A good portion of gains the middle class made had less to do with rugged individualism and more to do with employees learning to collectively bargain and employers actually sharing profitability more. I commented once on a an article at 28% or almost one third being a normal standard for housing. It struck me later on that the problem has less to do with housing and more to do with workers being asked to save larger portions of their income for things like retirement or their health care. In the past you had companies providing pensions and health care. Today companies magnimoniously dock your income to put into a 401k. They often tell you that in addition to that premium you are docked for your health care to have them take out more for your HSA to cover the deductibles you’ll have to come up with. The problem with the gig economy is that an increase in you paying the percentages on things like health care or retirement means that you have less of a percentage for other areas like housing. After all, the number can’t add up to more than 100%. The problem with a gig economy is that you are responsible for 100% of all the expenses. The employer conveniently gets to pocket gains made from passing all the costs on to the employee.

    2. jrs

      Is it really comparable to a 19th century economy? Didn’t more people then actually have their own businesses? Most contract gigs are still working for The Man, just without benefits.

  5. abynormal

    Jim Reid Overnight Market Recap…
    “One of the big problems with China’s FX move is that although they’ve ‘only’ seen a 3% currency fall (in the onshore Yuan) since their announcement last week, others have subsequently followed suit either deliberately or via market pressure. The following countries have seen their currency depreciate at least 4% since last Monday (and using last night’s closing prices): Kazakhstan (leading the way with a huge 26% devaluation following the removal of the trading band), Russia, Ghana, Guinea, Colombia, Belarus, Turkey, Malaysia and Algeria. In fact, if we extended the analysis to include those that have seen at least a 3% depreciation then the number of countries hits 17 and unsurprisingly all sit in the EM bracket. Every day it feels like we’re hitting fresh cycle lows for a currency somewhere with yesterday’s highlights being the Turkish Lira briefly sliding past 3 against the Dollar for the first time ever, the South African Rand breaching a level not seen since 2001, the Ruble weakening to the lowest level since February and the Malaysian Ringgit returning to a 17-year low.”

    “Regulators and bankers were using the wrong tools and the wrong metrics. Unfortunately, they still are.”
    James Rickards, Currency Wars: The Making of the Next Global Crisis

  6. Yonatan

    “Why Bezos’ Denials About Exploitation at Amazon Sound Like Sociopathic CEO-Speak”

    Because …. CEOs

    [You can’t keep a good meme down]

  7. abynormal

    FDA To Hold Public Meeting, Seek Comments On Antibiotic Overuse In Farm Animals
    …People who can’t attend but want to provide comment on the matter can go to Regulations.gov
    Date and Time: The public meeting will be held September 30, 2015, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Although you can comment on the interagency plan for collecting on-farm antimicrobial drug use and resistance data at any time, to ensure that the Agencies consider your comment before updating this plan, submit either electronic or written comments by November 30, 2015.
    Location: The public meeting will be held in the USDA Jefferson Auditorium (South Building), 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250. Please arrive between 7 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. to provide time to get through security.

  8. grayslady

    Please don’t do podcasts here. Podcasts, to me, reek of entertainment rather than information. Podcasts are to great ideas what Cliff’s Notes are to great literature.

      1. john

        I listen to Podcasts, and have heard plenty of ‘time filler.’

        Usually only takes me a while to hear any artists ‘go-to’s’

        The limitiation is really the limitations of the audience, not of the format.

        I’d be ok with a headline saying, nothing today, folks.

    1. Mark P.

      Podcasts I avoid as an abusive waste of my time, given that I can read the same information in written form anywhere between 4-30 times faster.

      They’re either entertainment — as the poster above says — or designed for the marginally literate. If any item’s source is too lazy or incompetent to put an interview transcript or written op-ed or whatever — especially today when fairly reliable dictation software exists — they’ve probably got nothing to say I need to waste half an hour of my life on.

      1. Lambert Strether

        I disagree; the Revolutions podcast really converted me.* Of course, the podcast doesn’t substitute for real scholarship (though it builds on it) but it really does help with the timeline, the set pieces, and the prominent players. I view podcasts as teaching tools, and there’s a reason teaching is — pace whatever horrorshow Silicon Valley has in store of us — done with a human’s voice.

        I can also see people who have long commutes finding podcasts very useful.

        Finally, podcasts are like being read aloud to, for me at least. I find that soothing.

        * Thanks to a member of the NC commentariat; hat tip, whoever you are!

        1. JEHR

          I agree with Lambert. If you go to iTunes and search for free podcasts, you can find all kinds of programming (often from radio programs) from BBC, CBC, RPI, etc. These podcasts will often lead me to obtain a good book on a topic that interests me. Right now I am listening to a series of broadcasts about the history of the Canadian environmental movement by scientists and researchers doing various PhD studies. It is very enlightening because these scientists often mention how our government is stifling this very research. Canada is being shortchanged by a government bent on agnotology so it is important to remember how things were once done and how much research is available.

    2. jrs

      Right. I can’t even read/view them at work, like I can text. I don’t like this internet becoming multimedia thing very much.

    3. hunkerdown

      I hope they’ll come with transcripts like the TRNN bits our hosts repost, if they must podcast. (Won’t somebody please think of the search engines, not to mention the hearing-impaired?)

  9. Eric Patton

    The article on humans as super-predators is amazing. Think about the extent to which “leaders” wax eloquently about the need to protect “the children” — meaning human children.

    The article discusses how, for example, hunters shoot Bambi’s mother but spare Bambi, and how this is actually the inhumane thing to do.

    We do the same types of things — sort of, do we not? (I’m still mulling this in my mind) — with our own children.

    There is a Native American saying — I did not come up with it — that says, “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors. We borrow it, from our children.”

    But we act as if we pass it on to our children. I don’t mean individual readers of NC. But as a society, institutionally, structurally — you know, capitalism — that’s really what we do.

    The rich parade around as though they’re leaving something to future generations. When really, every single one of us reading Yves’ and Lambert’s brilliant and important work knows that’s total bullshit.

    Are there therefore similarities between how we “spare” Bambi, and how we also “leave” a better world for future generations?

    We’re such super-predators, we actually, fucking, really, no-bullshit — actually prey on our own children.

    Screw Bambi. At least we might feed her and shelter her (metaphorically speaking) in a zoo. We don’t (as a society — I don’t mean NC readers) even feed and shelter our own children, except when the optics becomes too bad.

    Maybe. I don’t know. We’re sure real shits, though.

    1. TedWa

      Borrowing from future generations to pay for the bailouts, huge college debts for the next generation, young and healthy adults paying to support Obamacare for all or face financial penalties, the growing national debt where $8.5 trillion is missing that the Pentagon can’t account for and it’s getting worse. We not only borrowed from future generations, we made them debt-slaves. What a mess.

      Thomas Jefferson : “We must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt.
      We must make our election between economy and liberty
      or profusion and servitude.
      If we run into such debt, as that we must be taxed in our meat and
      in our drink, in our necessaries and our comforts, in our labors and
      our amusements, for our calling and our creeds…
      [we will] have no time to think,
      no means of calling our miss-managers to account
      but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves
      to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow-sufferers…
      And this is the tendency of all human governments.
      A departure from principle in one instance
      becomes a precedent for [another ]…
      till the bulk of society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery…
      And the fore-horse of this frightful team is public debt.
      Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression.”

    2. Tertium Squid

      The rich parade around as though they’re leaving something to future generations.

      And now you’ve got me thinking. What does any of the churn around us generate – bigger landfills and obese corpses? Is that it?

  10. Praedor

    Hmmm, what could it be that’s killing whales in Alaska? What could it be? What could be behind the massive death (and “melting” of starfish all along the West Coast/Pacific)? Oh, it couldn’t possibly be a confluence of Climate Change screwing up ocean water temperatures changing (and crashing) populations of plankton required by whales, or ocean acidification crashing plankton and other organisms, or massive amounts of hard radioactive waste pouring into the Pacific for years from Fukushima. It just MUST be a “natural fluke”, a mere burp, a mystery.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      Well it’s NOT Fukushima. All that radioactive waste was a non-event.

      Everybody says so.

        1. Kurt Sperry

          Do we have any empirical reason to doubt the published FDA data? My dosimetrist friend says there are no published data he’s seen that would raise any alarm for the Eastern Pacific, and that it’s unlikely based on what is known about the Fukashima release and Pacific hydrology that there will be in the future. The entry barriers to independent testing aren’t prohibitive here, so if there’s an issue it shouldn’t be terribly difficult to gather hard data to support that notion.

          1. Praedor

            I’m less concerned about the water at the West Coast than the FREELY-moving fish. Fish that are sometimes caught and sold as food. Fish that pass through the high(er) radioactivity areas and then (try to) breed. I’m concerned about cetaceans that swim through the area, eating radioactive plankton, soak in radioactive water close to the source. The local counts to the West Coast are irrelevant at this point.

      1. Vatch

        Active sonar kills whales. See my comment time stamped 2:07 PM. Bombing probably kills them, too.

    2. jrs

      Climate change and with it ocean acidification does seem the most likely bet. But sometimes it’s not the most likely bet.

  11. Praedor

    On the “EU: Greece must stick with reforms post-election”…why have elections then? Seriously, what’s the point? The People of any “democratic” nation, ostensibly the people ultimately in charge of their country, are not allowed to change anything substantial, cannot change ANYTHING that affects their lives the most negatively.

    You are free to have your democracy so long as it does anything and everything Big Finance tells you to do.

    1. hunkerdown

      I’m just going to start calling toilet paper “money”. That will clearly increase its value, just as calling systems that take pains to disempower the masses “democracies”.

      Pro tip: if you stop dealing with an aristocratic government as if it were a democracy, you might actually do some good.

  12. Praedor

    As for Greenwald’s scold on the puritanical glee around the outing of Ashley Madison scumbags, good. I couldn’t care less about the riffraff turds that used the site (I hope their spouses get the info) but what I am definitely keen on is exposing the outright hypocrites of the GOP/rightwing/evangelist crowd. They spout off about morality, “moral decay”, “family values”, go for slut-shaming, calling women who use birthcontrol harlots, etc…THOSE are the people I want outed on the site. Those are the people I obtain great pleasure in being outed.

    Karma baby. Karma.

    Suck it down.

      1. ambrit

        This is yet another ‘sign’ warning us to keep as much personal activity off of the Internet as possible. Heavens, if I were to want to be unfaithful to my partner, I most certainly wouldn’t do it online. (Said infidelity is reason enough to be shamed. Once trust is discarded, the relationship becomes a mere process of exploitation. The basic lesson here is that interpersonal relationships are not commodities.)

      2. Katniss Everdeen

        So it’s the HACKERS’ fault?

        That these disclosures are any problem at all stems directly from the “legitimacy” that the public has conferred on organizations like duggar’s “family” research council.

        From the myth of “judeo-christian principles” to the presidential “prayer breakfast,” this institutionalization of moral judgement has been as pervasive as it is corrosive and destructive.

        I’d imagine that many of these current “victims” of society’s “disapproval” have remained silent while “others” were victimized by this self-aggrandizing invasion of another individual’s privacy, and may even have engaged in it themselves. And now the noose tightens around their own whiny necks.

        Lay down with dogs, get up with fleas.

      3. hunkerdown

        It’s worth noting that Dan Savage is a Democratic bundler who mobilized the alt-lifestyle bourgeoisie against Russia on cue and got paid in gay marriage. So, of course he’s trying to preserve the credibility of the sexual conservatism norm by which “rogue” politicians can be kept on the reservation, and to protect the aristocrats and the antinomianism to which they are apparently entitled.

        Maybe norms designed to be failed are a cruel joke we should stop playing on one another. Just saying.

    1. nobody

      “I may be overestimating how far things will unfold, but this feels like a momentous event,” he wrote. “It’s easy to kid about the fact that these people were using a site intended to help them cheat. But if understood in more abstract terms, this hack has the potential to alter anyone’s relationship with the devices and apps and services they use every day,” Herrman argued.

      “Here were tens of millions of people expecting the highest level of privacy that the commercial web could offer as they conducted business they likely wanted to keep between two people. This hack could be ruinous — personally, professionally, financially — for them and their families. But for everyone else, it could haunt every email, private message, text and transaction across an internet where privacy has been taken for granted.”

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/08/19/dont-gloat-about-the-ashley-madison-leak-its-about-way-more-than-infidelity/

      1. Carla

        “for everyone else, it could haunt every email, private message, text and transaction across an internet where privacy has been taken for granted.”

        As well it should.

        1. Praedor

          Yeah, that is my feeling too. I’d say to him, “You say this as if it’s a bad thing.” You SHOULD be cautious about privacy online and everywhere. I am always keenly aware of my privacy and what/how I share things, if at all, online and in real life. I even have several email addresses with different associated levels of privacy attached. I have a couple that are CLEARLY me in my real life identity, a couple that are pseudo-anonymous (would take some extra effort by someone to get past the email and all it’s associated online activity to the RL me), and a couple absolutely anonymous email addresses that cannot be tied to my RL identity at all. I use my clearly me emails for work/family/business-related communications, my pseudo-anonymous account for online stuff that no boss (or commander) needs to know, and then the anonymous emails for just-in-case (I setup one while I was still active military and wanted an account I could use to leak bad stuff I might come across if my conscious and situation called for it). Privacy is ALWAYS on my mind online.

          1. Gio Bruno

            Unfortunately, ANY internet activity generates an IP address. For the trained they are better than knowing your Zip Code. And for some , they are as good (or better) than your physical address. Ask, Yves.

            1. Brooklin Bridge

              Using a proxy server will take care of that for many of the average hackers. It doesn’t present too much of a challenge for the NSA or anyone for that matter who is well funded and determined.

              And then you still have to trust the proxy server folks, of course.

      2. different clue

        Well . . . if it scares eleventeen thousand million hundred people into going back to using the Postal Service for LandMail, that would be good for the Postal Service. And good for national social-infrastructure survival.

  13. diptherio

    Why Bezos’ Denials About Exploitation at Amazon Sound Like Sociopathic CEO-Speak

    Sound like? Nay; “are.”

    1. Vatch

      This is why I briefly thought that yesterday’s linked article about an insect infestation at Burning Man was really a humorous article about a CEO infestation. It just seems natural to associate the words “infestation” and “CEO”.

  14. Unorthodoxmarxist

    The Syriza split marks the last of the Troika’s demands met. Now the Left Platform, which created so much trouble for Merkel and Schauble, has cleaved itself off into a new party (incidentally, Popular Unity was the name of Allende’s socialist party in Chile). While Syriza was always an uncertain mix of Eurocommunists (leftist social dems) and Marxists, and the split will simplify the ideological differences, to have it done in this way shows how much Germany gets what it wants in other European nations. A re-elected Syriza without its left faction will now become PASOK version 2.0, with fewer ties to the oligarchy.

    Incidentally this occurred on the 75th anniversary of Leon Trotsky’s assassination.

    1. alex morfesis

      greece reaches “peak stupid”… hopefully…

      politicians should not be allowed to use viagra…

      laugh at zanis (former energy minister and now former syrizanista) reminds me of some goldbug treasure hunters I have tripped over…

      th/pl:
      all we have to do is find the ship, smash it into little pieces and grab the gold

      am:
      not exactly…besides, the gold is the least valuable piece of a find

      th/pl:
      what are you stupid, it is GOLD

      am:
      doing it the proper way and
      telling the story and letting people see it on tv or on the web will pay you much more money in the long run

      th/pl:
      long run ?? it is G-LD !! we grab it…we sell it…we party…then we die…who cares about the long run,
      IT is G-ld…why worry about the future…my hair is falling out, my wife knows what i look like under this shirt and the future is someone elses problem.

      am:
      lucille ball produced star trek…it was expensive to make, had low ratings and everyone told her it was a stupid idea and a waste of money. the show hung on long enough to make about 80 episodes, which was enough to allow it to be resold as reruns over the years, to the point it became a multi-billion dollar brand…long term…

      th/pl:
      did she live to enjoy all those billions?

      am:
      no…but that is what leadership does…it leaves something for the future.

      th/pl:
      no you stupid americanoellina, she is dead and did not get to see her hard work…we break into the central bank at midnight, take the “gold of cairo”, go find some natashas, get some ouzo, grab a kotero and plan our strategy once we have the gold…

      am:
      but bankers do not care about gold…gold is a prop to keep the red hat church ladies from asking too many questions about how the economy really runs

      th/pl:
      karl marx explained that the capitalists want gold, so if we take it, they will negotiate

      am:
      the communist manifeato was published from inside the “city of london”…the financial capital…and his lazy ass was kept talking by the same german/dutch banking family that founded “philips” the giant multinational…last i checked that means mister marx was really a capitalist ploy of the machiav level…

      th/pl:
      well…i am too old to worry about facts and details…and besides…it is
      G-OLD…the natashas are not economists…we break in at midnight.

    2. hemeantwell

      Unorthodoxmarxist, I’ve been seeing a number of people — Sankara at Jacobin, for one — expressing doubt about the viability of a left split-off from Syriza. What’s your take on this?

      And, thanks for the Trotsky reminder.

      1. hemeantwell

        To follow up, Popular Unity has a statement out at Jacobin, nominally authored by Kouvelakis.

        https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/08/popular-unity-syriza-left-platform-lafazanis/

        A puzzling conclusion:

        The third is that this new parliamentary group is now the third largest group in the Greek Parliament, ahead of Golden Dawn, the neo-Nazi party. This means that in the next few days its leader, Panagiotis Lafazanis, will get a mandate to constitute a government that will last for three days, as the Greek constitution stipulates.

        After the resignation of the Tsipras government, this mandate is now in the hands of the second party in parliament, New Democracy, the main right-wing opposition party. This span of time will be used by Popular Unity to trigger a broad debate and the mobilization of all the social forces who wish to fight austerity and the memoranda, the previous as well as the new one.

        The program of the party and the full range of its support among leading personalities of the Greek left, which is expected to be quite impressive, will be released at the start of next week.

  15. Kurt Sperry

    “Google’s Project Sunroof shows your home’s solar potential for free Inhabitat (furzy mouse). I don’t trust Google on this. Why should I tell Google that much about my house?”

    Too late, probably. Download the recently unpaywalled Google Earth Pro and enable the “US Parcel Data” layer. Click on any property in the US and in most cases under “Building Features” in the pop up you’ll find all sorts of information such as assessed value, square footages, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, construction year, roof composition and so on all presumably scraped off the public tax records. It’s actually an excellent and useful interface for accessing this public data.

    1. Brooklin Bridge

      Did you say, “download”, as in download an application from Google that would run on my machine and connect back to the mother-ship? I’d rather give them my physical address and info about the house. On second thought, I won’t do either and will hopefully manage somehow to muddle through…

      1. alex morfesis

        well you could have two computers…one to let the system think you are a happy little slave, and another one to create with…

        1. Brooklin Bridge

          I did. Unfortunately, one them crapped out and I’m not in a position to get another for a while. When I’ve got a little time, I will load Linux onto a partition and dual boot; and then phase out Windows (I used to have considerable respect for MS, then grudging respect, now just uneasiness, distaste and mild revulsion; the spying little, data collecting, rent extracting farts).

  16. Jim Haygood

    Reuters digs deeper into the emails of “the employee” (quoting Judge Emmet Sullivan’s casual lèse-majesté) and finds out why Hillary keeps insisting that they weren’t “marked” classified:

    In the small fraction of emails made public so far, Reuters has found at least 30 email threads from 2009, representing scores of individual emails, that include what the State Department’s own “Classified” stamps now identify as so-called ‘foreign government information.’

    This sort of information, which the department says Clinton both sent and received in her emails, is the only kind that must be “presumed” classified, in part to protect national security and the integrity of diplomatic interactions, according to U.S. regulations examined by Reuters.

    “It’s born classified,” said J. William Leonard, a former director of the U.S. government’s Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO).

    The State Department disputed Reuters’ analysis but declined requests to explain how it was incorrect.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/08/21/us-usa-election-clinton-emails-idUSKCN0QQ0BW20150821

    A captured State department, which had to be ordered yesterday by Judge Sullivan to coordinate with the FBI (“I’m surprised that State didn’t do that already”), is still singing ‘God Save the Queen.’

    Unfortunately, State’s ragtag a capella group is performing on the listing deck of the Titanic, while Queen Hillary sails toward the empty horizon in the sole lifeboat, urging her aides Huma and Cheryl to “Paddle faster, dammit!”

    1. Brooklin Bridge

      Have you read Jonathan Turley’s posts about Hillary’s dilemma? A sample:

      I have previously discussed why that explanation [that she was in total compliance with the law] is less than compelling, particularly for anyone who has handled sensitive or classified material. As I discussed earlier, virtually anything coming out of the office of the Secretary of State would be considered classified as a matter of course. As Secretary, Clinton received the highest level of intelligence and there is always a concern that second generation discussions will be influenced or reveal such information. That is why State Department people are asked to conduct official business on the secure system. Most high-level communications are treated as classified and only individually marked as classified when there is a request for disclosure. You do not generate material as the Secretary of State and assume that it is unclassified. You are supposed to assume and treat it as presumptively classified. Otherwise, there would be massive exposure of classified material and willful blindness as to the implications of the actions of persons disregarding precautions.

      http://jonathanturley.org/2015/08/21/federal-judge-says-hillary-clinton-violated-government-policy-in-using-personal-server-while-secretary-of-state/#more-92661

      I frequently wail about Hillary’s coronation. That she fees such is her divine right is beautifully illustrated by her attitude toward this email fiasco.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Just a comment about the Yang nature of our institutions.

        The last two female leaders in the Western world, Thatcher and Merkel, are more manly than most men.

        With Hilary, that would be three strikes…as she does not seem to be able to make our institutions more Yin, more tolerant, more open, more nurturing.

        1. hunkerdown

          The NOW set dumped that talking point years ago, when it became clear that it would interfere with their ability to “compete”.

      2. Jim Haygood

        ‘Most high-level communications are treated as classified and only individually marked as classified when there is a request for disclosure.’

        Hillary’s ‘not marked classified’ riff is a transparent attempt to lay blame on lower-level staffers for ‘failing to classify’ emails.

        Whereas being the top-level official, Hillary was in charge of making and enforcing the rules for classification … including for her own communications.

        So it’s not going to work. Need a new triangulation pitch, stat.

        1. Brooklin Bridge

          Turley’s whole point is that by virtue of being Sec. of State, one’s email IS classified.

      3. Vatch

        I have previously discussed why that explanation [that she was in total compliance with the law] is less than compelling, particularly for anyone who has handled sensitive or classified material.

        Even if she really had been in compliance with the law, her behavior was, at best, imprudent, and was probably much worse. This reminds of the lion killing dentist’s claim that he obeyed all of the relevant laws. So what? He’s still a total creep.

        1. Brooklin Bridge

          She can only be in compliance if she is the one who defines the law. She thinks she is. Indeed if she does it, then it must be legal. The judge in the above case, however, begs to differ (and Tricky Dick had his fingers crossed behind his back so it doesn’t count).

  17. Gabriel

    Re War Nerd podcast, for earlier Mark Ames-Dolan/Brecher talks, interested readers should check out the links here, if they want to avoid the nightmare that is searching for anything specific on iTunes. These are the original NSFWCorp “War Nerd Wednesday” podcasts. Gems in every one, like the suspiciously large number of reported helicopter “malfunctions” in Afghanistan

    I’m not sure if that, if it was up to the US military, the Red Baron wouldn’t just be this German who happened to be around when a bunch of Allied airplanes started suffering “mechanical malfunctions”

    Join an exclusive club of broke, overeducated malcontents and support dammit!

  18. hemeantwell

    Re the good Alternet article on Bezos, its description of the suffering of workers under his regime brings up at least one kind of distinction in the pressures they are facing. The people on the warehouse floor are in part facing something akin to what assembly line workers face, relentless pressure to speed up their activity and literally synchronize themselves behaviorally with the line. From what I’ve read, and in a limited way experienced, to the extent you can you deal with this by numbing, by daydreaming, distancing. The managers are facing a demand that is in some respects different, since they have to engage their supervisees as personalities and force them to become inhuman, as in the case of the worker who was told to skip their daughter’s birthday. They have to mimic, or enact, the perversity of the organization interpersonally in a way the line workers don’t. Line workers become machines, managers play perverse roles.

    When talking about degrading industrial relations, I think sociopathy and perversity should always be linked. The idea of “making work your baby” reminds me of how analysts would talk about a perverse fantasy of children who, faced with the overwhelming fact of a new baby and their parents’ creation of it, try to overcome their narcissistic crash by thinking that their poop is just as good as the new baby.

  19. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Baby stingrays – they look like some fancy Vietnamese wontons, made with very thin rice wrappers.

    Dip it in fish sauce. Should be tasty.

    1. susan the other

      amazing beef, that’s just what I thought; I thought is was a play on gourmet Japanese ravioli, raw of course…

  20. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    The Puritanical Glee…Ashley Madison Hack.

    It’s better to glee over some family-values guys’/gals’ who cheat.

    People can get really puritanical then. Maybe then, puritanical glee will be good.

  21. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Prices raises when the government prints too much money.

    I think it depends on the details.

    If the printed money only goes to the hedge funds, the prices of stocks and Chinese Yuan blue and white vases will go up.

    If the printed money is spent on robots, the prices of slaves (human slaves for now, no robot slaves just yet) will go down.

    1. LifelongLib

      “Prices raises when the government prints too much money.”

      True if the underlying economy can’t sustain any more activity. Seldom the case in undamaged modern economies, where activity is often strangled by lack of money. Lots of things to be done, people who could do them standing around, no money to make it happen. The government SHOULD print money to deal with situations like that.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        My hope is the government just prints money and give it, directly, to the people to spend.

        “You print, we spend…less conflict of interest than you-print-you-spend.”

  22. Jim Haygood

    Today October Light Crude (now the front month contract, since the Sep. contract expired yesterday) reached an intraday low of $40.04 a barrel.

    http://www.barchart.com/quotes/futures/CLV15

    In crude oil, the forty-dollar level has particular psychological significance. It was the high level reached in late 1990, after Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. In the extreme panic of late 2008, crude dropped through $40 to $32, before bouncing back. Long-term chart:

    http://www.mrci.com/pdf/cl.pdf

    Now we’re back on the brink of that critical $30-40 range again. If $40 doesn’t hold, lots of bad stuff gets unleashed, not only in the Fragile Five nations, but even in the oil patch of Fortress America.

    Save us, Mr Yellen!

    1. Jim Haygood

      Update: $40.00 … BUSTED intraday.

      Let’s see how CLV15 closes (2:30 pm EDT for the pit session).

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        The sad thing is, if oil hits $0, there will still be fighting in the Middle East.

        1. different clue

          But if oil stayed at zero for enough years or decades, eventually the Middle Eastern combatants would have nothing left to fight with but sticks, rocks and handfulls of sand. And wouldn’t that be better?

  23. john

    Just a vent today.

    Illiteracy reign supreme.

    Someone told me illiteracy rates remain flat across the developed world. No quotes neccessary.

    I’m tired of seeing the same families be the ‘producers’ of every film I see.

    I see alot.

    I see Walt Disney and McCarthy.

    Anyone know Amy Schumer is related to Senator Chuck Schumer.

    Such talent, but such a disappointment.

    What does the future hold? More of the same.

    Purported self-interest.

    The “loyal opposition” is getting tired.

  24. Code Name D

    Braking news: Kansas Democratic Party Chair Larry Meeker resigned in response to a backlash to an interview given to the Wichita Eagle, “A Democrat in Kansas would qualify as a moderate Republican in California,”
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/08/21/1414190/-Kansas-Democratic-Party-Chair-Resigns-as-Democratic-Gathering-Begins-in-Wichita#
    According to the Daily Kos, a Hillary fundraising organization may have pressured the resignation.

    Not a lot of information out about this at the moment, but it looks like something is snapping. Rank and File Democrats are torqued that Democratic Leadership actually went along with Brownback’s tax cuts and further gutting the budget. Donations and volunteers are at record lows. Apparently someone is not meeting their extortion quota.

    1. LifelongLib

      45 years ago, “Republican” Richard Nixon supported a guaranteed annual income and national health care. “Racist” George Wallace wanted to expand Medicare and increase Social Security. Compared to that, I don’t know how much difference it makes if today’s “Democrats” are in Kansas or California…

  25. Lexington

    RE: US cinema chain Regal introduces bag search after attacks

    What’s the point in searching peoples’ bags when the concealed carry of firearms is legal in all 50 states? You stick Sweatness in a pancake holster in you waistband and you’re good to go. It’s not like they’re going to do patdown searches or use metal detectors. And even if they did it would only to make sure you’re not smuggling outside food in.

    No way corporate America is going to mess with every redblooded American’s right to pack heat.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Sometimes, they get ten of you in a few minutes; other times, they get millions of you over the years.

      Usually, it’s highly visible physical violence with the former and less visible physical violence with the latter (bad diet or toxic air, for example) or non-physical violence (job stress).

      Sadly, it’s the ten-of-you-in-a-few-minutes events that we humans seem attracted to, focused on.

    2. hunkerdown

      I assure you, it’s about the outside food and drink. The attacks are just the excuse to get into your bags.

  26. Oregoncharles

    “Herhold: Grading Carly Fiorina’s tenure at HP Mercury News. As I’ve said, she is hated in the Valley. ”
    She’s also hated in the Willamette Valley, where a major HP plant now stands mostly empty, trying to function as an office park.

Comments are closed.