Links 3/24/16

‘Dog carer’ for cheetah cubs born by C-section BBC

How a simple SIM card makes farmers more efficient—and possibly saves lives ars technica (Chuck L)

Computer use could help predict early-stage Alzheimer’s The Stack (Chuck L)

A shockingly small amount of US adults meet the science-backed criteria for a healthy lifestyle Science Alert. Now I am going to quibble. Their “150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity” is simplistic. If you do really intense activity, like interval sprints (and full on, 30 seconds at your max, 2.5-3 minute rest interval), 20 minutes of that is more beneficial than longer periods of jogging, for instance.


Brussels attacks: How Saudi Arabia’s influence and a deal to get oil contracts sowed seeds of radicalism in Belgium Independent

Talking to People on the Streets of the Neighborhood Known as Brussels’s ‘Terrorist Hotbed’ Vice (resilc)

NATO & Russia After the Brussels Attack. Stephen F. Cohen. NYU, Princeton University John Batchelor (Kevin F)

Belgium ups security at nuclear plants following Brussels bombings euronews (David L)

NBC’s coverage of the Brussels attack was stunningly irresponsible Salon (resilc)


Does a Tobin Tax on Foreign Currency Trades Make Sense for China? WSJ China Real Time


BRICS Under Attack: The Empire Strikes Back In Brazil Mintpress

Overthrowing Dilma Rousseff: It’s Class War, and Their Class is Winning The Bullet (Sid S)

Why This Photo Of Brazilian Protesters Is Sparking National Debate World Post (margarita)

Holdout investors urge DOJ not to back Argentina in bond appeal: Frankel Reuters

Obama to release Argentina coup files BBC


Why does France want to overthrow the Syrian Arab Republic? Voltairenet (Wat)

REPORT: ISIS has trained 400 fighters to attack Europe Associated Press (David L)

Imprisoned With Her Baby, Bahraini Activist Is Victim of U.S. Silence, Sister Says Intercept. Resilc: “i was in the PEACE Corps there, now it is the war corps base of operations for usa usa. The Shia treated me so nice, the Sunnis not so much…..”

Exclusive: U.S. to charge Iran in cyber attacks against banks, New York dam – sources Reuters

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

The Inherent Bias of Facial Recognition Motherboard

The FBI Is Trying to Crack the San Bernardino Case, Not Set a Precedent Wall Street Journal (guurst). The lady doth protest too much.

Imperial Collapse Watch

Building the Virtuous Neighborhood American Conservative (resilc)

Obama’s Break with the Establishment Consortium News (martha r)


American elections ranked worst among Western democracies. Here’s why. The Conversation

Should Sanders Build a Progressive Movement All the Way to the Convention and Beyond? Alternet

Sanders campaign manager: ‘There’s obviously something wrong with the numbers’ Politico (furzy). A reminder.

5 Outrageous Examples of Voter Suppression in the Arizona Primary USUncut (dcblogger(

A Facebook posting. Martha r: “From bernie supporter (apparently quite young), with interesting description of her phone call re AZ primary with pratt wiley, national director of voter expansion for the DNC. I’ve emailed pratt wiley urging him to investigate promptly and thoroughly.”

Dawnya Dorsch Yaykin‎ to Bernie Sanders Activists
5 hrs · Lexington, KY ·
I just spent 37 minutes talking to Pratt Wiley (attorney), he is the National Director of Voter Expansion for the DNC. This is a big deal. He and his legal team are taking very seriously what happened in AZ yesterday and will be spending the day looking into every claim. I expressed our concerns about the DNC and MSM, and their obvious bias and corruption. He was very, very kind and shared the same concerns we have. He agrees that what happened yesterday was done on purpose and with ill intent. I suggested the first thing his department should do to start to make this right is take this story of voter suppression and fraud in AZ, and many other states to the Media.
He and I exchanged our e-mail address and decided to be in touch in a few days. He needs to hear from more people, he actually said he needs to hear from 100,000 more people like me.
I’ve decided not to give his number at this point, but his email is
EVERYONE needs to send him an email about our frustrations, and any personal story you may have about voter suppression.
Pratt Wiley – email him by the thousands!!!

Bernie Sanders Is Currently Winning the Democratic Primary Race, and I’ll Prove It to You Huffington Post (martha r)

Former Nixon aide admits racist roots of America’s drug war: Bernie and Hillary must own this issue and fix this injustice — now Salon (margarita)

The Democratic Road to Black Ruin Glen Ford (Bob K)

When the Feminist Establishment Candidate is Further Right than Trump Feministing (Chuck L)

Hillary Clinton for President Rolling Stone. Martha r: “Sorry, I just have to say this is utterly sickening.”

Clinton attacks Trump’s stance on Nato Financial Times. Note the straw manning. Trump wants other NATO members to bear more of the costs. God forbid the US participate in a NATO where we don’t call all the shots by providing virtually all of the dough.

Donald Trump will win in a landslide. *The mind behind ‘Dilbert’ explains why. -Washington Post (furzy)

It Looks Like President Trump Just Learned That Heidi Cruz Used to Work At Goldman Gawker

Notorious Big New Yorker (resilc)

Fed up with wait, Santa Clara sheriff buys jail cameras herself San Jose Mercury News. Jess: “Told that installing video cameras to monitor deputies in the county jail would cost $20 mil and take 2 years, the lady sheriff bought a 12 camera setup from Costco for $761 and had it installed herself. Needless to say, she has been vilified by the embarrassed county commissioners.”


Rockefeller Family Fund hits Exxon, divests from fossil fuels Reuters (furzy)

Oil oversupply is getting worse despite recent price spike Business Pundit

‘Historic’ spending cuts putting future oil supply at risk, threatening future spike in prices Financial Post

Fed rate hike expectations jolting currencies CNBC

Liquidity Death Spiral Traps Credit Suisse Bloomberg (David L). The headline exaggerates the severity of the issue, int that this is a trading desk/business unit event that will dent earnings, but not threaten survival. But it has the makings of another London Whale level debacle in terms of exposing unacceptably poor controls.

Bank Earnings Get Mauled by “Leveraged Loan” Time Bomb Wolf Richter

CII conference: Private equity industry moving toward more fee disclosure Pensions & Investments (DO)

Guillotine Watch

Wanted: San Francisco butler to whip home into shape (salary: $175,000) Guardian (margarita)

Class Warfare

A message to the elite Richard Murphy

Homeownership increasingly difficult for average Americans: report Reuters

Economics in a Time of Political Instability Project Syndicate (David L). More important than the anodyne headline indicates.

Antidote du jour (martha r):

puppy and cat links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. ahimsa

    Anyone know where to find detailed breakdowns of voting in AZ. Would be interesting to see voting day tallies versus early voting tallies to measure the effectiveness of the intensive Sanders campainging there. Are provisional votes even tabulated? Plus, is exit poll information available online (again to at least see what kind of turnout was driven by Sanders campaigning).
    P.s. yes, I know AZ is over, but can we at least review the data?

    1. Llewelyn Moss

      AZ was a foobar election. 5 hour lines on a working day? I guarantee many thousands looked at the lines and had to decide between voting or keeping their job. I doubt the results have any bearing on campaign strategy or tactics. I read there were no exit polls.

      And the Facebook posting in the links is kinda funny. They actually expect the DNC to investigate voter suppression when it benefits Hellery. Yeah, I’m sure that will happen.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I am willing to see what will come out of that, but the attorney did not connect Iowa and Massachusetts to Arizona, and I may be reading this wrong, but acting as if this was something new.

        “I’m shocked, shocked.”

        1. James Levy

          I may be mistaken, but the Maricopa County officials in charge of voting are, I believe, Republicans. Now, that doesn’t preclude in any way hanky-panky, but it may turn out to be the SOP “bipartisan” hanky-panky we see in so many ways here in the USA. That doesn’t let Clinton off, but it does reach the deeper problem.

      2. DorothyT

        I heard on NPR that in some area, perhaps Phoenix, there were 200 voting locations previously, but it was cut down to 60 this year.

        1. DorothyT

          A 2013 ruling by the Supreme Court made a change in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that allowed elected Maricopa County Recorder, Helen Purcell, to easily change the number and location of polling places. Purcell is a Republican.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Oh say can you see…the coming express-lane voting.

            You pay a little more, so you don’t have to wait in line.

            1. nowhere

              There is nothing more American – profit motive and voting. It’s good work, if you can survive it.

    2. hreik

      Calls to investigate reports of voter suppression and disenfranchisement in the Arizona primary are gaining in strength and urgency, as Governor Doug Ducey and Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton have now both spoken out against the horrid election conditions, which Bernie Sanders called a “disgrace” in a press conference earlier today…..

      Furthermore, many noted that polling stations were largely absent from Latino communities and low-income areas. Purcell initially defended her choices and even blamed voters for the long lines, but the morning after the primary she admitted she had made a “mistake” and that she “screwed up.”….

      Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton went further in a personal letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, calling on the Department of Justice to investigate the matter thoroughly and demand answers and justice for those disenfranchised by the mismanagement and incompetence. He noted that more affluent neighborhoods received more polling stations per capita, and also noted that Arizona has a history of voter suppression and a documented history of discarding provisional ballots.

      Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton calls for DOJ investigation into the shenanigans in AZ primary.

      1. Llewelyn Moss

        We’ll see if Purcell loses her job (the just result) or at a minimum gets demoted to a position where she cannot cause fatal damage to future elections. I will start holding my breath in 3.2.1.

        It is not believable that she did this on her own. Higher ups must have signed off on the plan. And did this all happen by stealth? All of a sudden on primary day, officials discover that 70% of the polling places have been shut down? There’s a lot of rotten apples in that barrel.

        1. hreik

          It is not believable that she did this on her own. Higher ups must have signed off on the plan.

          Absolutely correct.

          1. Higgs Boson

            Is Purcell an elected official? An elected official can’t be “fired” and many states don’t have provisions to recall elected officials. If her position is an appointed one, then she might be fired in which case she could sue. (Why not? “I was told by my boss to cut costs like a good austerian sinecure. I was just following orders.”) Or she could be vilified into resigning. Then back to business as usual.

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              Was she intentionally try to make things hard for Hillary’s senior voters (she was said to have more of them than other candidates, in retirement states like Arizona or otherwise)?

            2. afisher

              Yes, she is an elected official – up for re-election this year. AKA – expect no improvement, her job depends on status quo and worse.

        2. Ping

          Arizona is a pathetic political backwater amongst the worst producing many high profile characters like Sherrif Joe, Gov Brewer (Scorpions for Breakfast) Gov Evan Mecham (Martin Luther King dosn’t deserve a holiday) etc etc.

          Our current legislature and Governor Ducey spend their time passing ever more extreme ideological laws like eliminating every shred of gun control including concealed carry requirments, access to women’s and low income health care, while degrading public education outright funneling public monies to disaterous for profit charters and religious schools (even refusing to distribute voter approved education bond money) and building private prisions the size of cities whose lobbiests fund consecutive Governors.

          It is in Tucson, AZ where the Safari Club International is headquartered in their International Wildlife Musuem. Their wealthy membership contributes heavily to prevent species protections to fuel their voracious trophy contests of over 320 species including rare and endangered for top honors (thier member killed the iconic lion Cecil). Their in house legal department specializes in degrading or eliminating the Endangered Species Act and is active on every front( see thier website under ‘Advocacy’

          The Safari Club has completely capured AZ Game and Fish…all of it’s commissioners and most staff are Safari Club and it’s all about their agenda.

          Yet amidst drastic cutbacks for public good while providing lavish big business tax breaks, the Governor allocated over 1 million dollars to fight the feds on the Grey Wolf protection (a Safari Club agenda who wants to erradicate most predators) and open up public lands to more hunting.

          There is much more to this huge, yet uncovered, conservation story and local activists can provide documentation for investigative journalist. It’s a big uncovered story.

          And so typical of Arizona’s brain dead politics and corruption.

    3. bob

      I’ve given up looking for voting data during this primary. Number of votes cast and who they were cast for. Trend data might be nice too.

      Every time I’ve looked for it, all I get is ANALysis. After 20-30 minutes I might stumble upon some sort of incomplete precinct count. Lots of exit polls, asking bad questions.

      To complicate things further, this isn’t an election, it’s primary, so the party machine is in full control of most data.

      It’s a giant joke.

    4. Lambert Strether

      The framing of the AZ debacle seems to be sliding toward:

      1) It’s the fault of those mean Republicans

      2) Good Democratic officials working within the system will defend the voters through lawsuits

      3) The Supreme Court is critical, because of the VRA decision.

      Do those talking points sound at all familiar?

      Taking them in reverse order:

      3) The current Supreme Court nominee is a “moderate” Republican. One feature of the Grand Unified Field theory of demographic re-alignment that the Democratic Establishment has been depending on seems to have become peeling off “moderate” Republicans (from the 17% who won’t vote for Trump). So don’t expect this or any future Supreme Court nomination to get a redo on VRA.

      2) Just because Democrats aren’t driving the car doesn’t mean they’re unhappy about the destination. Low turnout benefits all incumbents, Democrat and Republican alike. And by disenfranchising smelly proles and the poors, the Republicans are disenfranching populations that Democratic elites would prefer not to appeal to in any case.

      1) If the Democrats were really serious about either voting rights or election reform, you’d see registration drives as a conscious and visible strategy continuously, even in off years* and you’d see a push toward the world standard for voting technology: Hand-marked paper ballots counted in public (with maybe Election Day as a national holiday). Do you see either of those things? No. Ergo, this is just a typical Democrat “Mean Republicans” schtick, albeit in a more cyncical** and hairballish form than usual***.

      * Heck, the Democrats could just fund IDs for the oldest and poorest, for just a few tens of millions. Why don’t they do that? A question that answers itself, once asked.

      ** Hard to believe, I know.

      *** Dittoes.

  2. Skippy

    Prof Philip Mirowski: Should Economists be Experts in Markets or (…) 2015.06.15

    Skip…. going back is not a live option…

    Ref – Rockefeller Family Fund hits Exxon, divests from fossil fuels Reuters (furzy)

    Ha…. someone here in Oz with exposure by industry affiliation had the cheek to strongly suggest it was a good signal for a bottom and growth was just around the corner….

    The leverage unwind is scary tho…

    Skippy…. please take the time to watch the Mirowski link….

  3. PlutoniumKun

    Re: Science Alert article on healthy lifestyles.

    I agree with Yves that the ‘150 minute rule’ does not allow for people who do short, sharp intensive work, but from what I recall, the more refined version of the rule states ”150 minutes moderate to high intensity, or 70 minutes high intensity’. Its certainly proven that very short, very high intensive activity can be very beneficial for aerobic and strength fitness, but I don’t think there is much research into whether this extends over to general health. I think there is also evidence that even very active people can suffer ill health related to inactivity if they are very sedentary for large parts of the day (for example, people who sit at a desk and car all week, then play active sports in the weekend). So the science is very complicated and nowhere near settled. The general rule of thumb I think is to follow the 150/70 minute rule, but make sure you are physically active, even if only for a few minutes, at least twice a day. Research indicates that people who cycle to work, even if the cycle is very short and unstrenuous, are much healthier than others – the main reason would seem to be that the exercise, while gentle, is repeated.

    An issue which is rarely raised though, but which I think is very important, is that I would not mind betting that the overwhelming majority of the unhealthy and unfit come from poorer elements of society. Look at any bunch of well off middle class people in a nice restaurant in any city in the western world and most of them glow with health, and few will be overweight. Take a look at, say, a church gathering in any poor neighbourhood, it will be the opposite. In Ireland here, a friend who worked in an airport said there was a joke circulating about the ‘Ryanair weight tariff’. It was based on the people in the queue for discount airlines being distinctly fatter and bigger than those queuing for the regular flights.

    1. Gio Bruno

      Excellent comment. Guidelines are guidelines and every body is different. Young folks should strive for the top-end, older folks should seek strenuous, but low-impact exercise (weight training) and the lower end.

      I’ve transitioned away from an intense hour in the weight room to more legwork running the stadium steps and a good hour doing low-impact 50M laps in the community pool. Never thought I could get good at swimming, but old dogs can learn new tricks ;) .

      1. PlutoniumKun

        Sadly, my physio insists on four hours minimum intensive work (core, muscle) a week just to keep my body from falling apart…..

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      I agree with your point re consistency and the health benefits about getting out of the “sedentary” category. That is the most important issue from a health perspective More exercise (up to the point where you don’t mess up your joint) is better, but the biggest gains are from being “not sedentary”.

      However, I do disagree with you, ex orthopedic risk (and I am a textbook case of the tradeoff there) of trying to argue that more intense exercise somehow benefits “aerobic” heath and strength and not “general health”. Sprint training is vastly more effective in reducing the risk of a heart attack, since it actually mimics what typically causes a heart attack, which is intense activity with no warmup (think of all the guys who die shoveling snow or get a heart attack running to catch an airplane). Similarly, strength is the single best predictor of biological age, as opposed to physical age. Strength training is the best thing you can do for your general heath, and more intense strength training is more effective (as in not lifting as heavy as you can within your rep/set parameters is sort of a waste of time).

      1. PlutoniumKun

        Yves, you raise some interesting points, and you remind me that there is a long term study going on here in TCD Dublin focusing on strength training (weights) for retirees – the initial results I believe are very positive. The studies I’ve seen (mostly from reading the excellent’Sweat Science’ blog) if I understand correctly seem to think that maintaining muscle bulk is important for health as you grow older, but it could be of course that muscle bulk is simply related to fitness and a healthy diet.

        Your point about intense training protecting from heart attacks is one I’ve not heard before, but it does make sense (my father suffered a massive heart attack shovelling snow in NY in 1971, fortunately he survived it). There are actually a lot of medical professionals who say that people should avoid high intensity exercise once they pass 40, mostly based on anecdote about people getting strokes and aneurisms during intense exercise, but I think thats very misguided.

        Incidentally, so far as I’m aware the first study on health and lifestyle is considered to have been one carried out by Dean Dr. Jonathan Swift in 18th Century Dublin – he concluded that the poor were healthier, mostly because they ate lots of grains and veg, while the rich ate too much meat and sugary foods. He was actually right, but of course that was before the days when the rich eat quinoa and the poor eat cheeseburgers…

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          It would be unwise for a sedentary person to start interval sprinting cold. Probably best for them to do moderate cardio for a month or two and then start interval sprints.

          Moreover, those interval sprints are HARD! You need a 3 min warmup (and I do mean warmup, just get your heart rate up a bit, but not too much). The first time you try it, 2 rounds will seem like a lot, and you’l probably want to finish with more moderate, steady cardio. You add a round every other session till you hit your target. Then if you want to continue challenging yourself, you add 5 seconds to your work time, and increase your rest time correspondingly (always rest 5-6X as long as your work time). Even adding that 5 seconds will probably require working up to it (as in doing it on the first 2-3 rounds, then going back to the old work time, and again gradually increasing the work time for all the sets). Longer work time will mean fewer rounds (eventually) for the same total exercise period.

          You can do this running, on a rowing machine, with a jump rope, etc. What counts is the principle: go full out, then an active rest (you keep moving but not all that much).

          The results on strength training are more conclusive than you suggest. Strength is the single best predictor of biological age, as opposed to physical age. The second best is muscle mass.

          Moreover, people in their 80s who started weight training 3x a week lowered their biological markers of aging significantly, in some cases by decades. Although the plural of anecdote is not data, my great uncle, who hauled lobsters without a winch half a day every day weather permitting (which is very strenuous) when I last saw him at 88, looked spectacular, like a guy in his late 50s who’d been out in the sun a bit too much. Stood straight, moved with ease. None of his siblings, with pretty much the same genes and lifestyle ex the exercise, held up anywhere near as well.

          And even though I said weights, you can do a lot with bodyweight exercises, but you have many more options if you use weights.

          1. vidimi

            i am a big believer in anaerobic exercise but it’s not for the sedentary – a category of which, unfortunately, i am currently part. it requires plenty of warm up. probably the best shape i was ever in was when did long warm-ups and plenty of stretches in between a couple of 100m sprints (running) per day. those sprints took everything out of you.

    3. Robert Dudek

      Poor people are less likely to have access to and afford quality food. Though the right kind of exercise is important, proper nutrition is the foundation of good health.

    4. Ed Miller

      I’d like to add a personal experience to add to the article, especially what is missing. Background is that I worked as an integrated circuit designer, so I was at a desk for 9-10 hours a day, plus always had work to do with the family like a “normal person”. At 52 years old I was 185 lbs (I am only 5-8 high) and had very high blood pressure (190/140), high cholesterol, was going diabetic, and drank lots of diet colas to get through each day but wasn’t too bad about snack foods and burgers and the like. I had trouble sleeping at night due to headaches so I finally went to see a doctor (new one since I had moved to a new job in a new city). That ways 16 years ago. My health was a mess. The doctor put me on exercise at the gym and told me I needed to change my diet, but this isn’t the interesting part.

      What I have learned since then: Diet is critical to controlling your weight and bad health indicators like blood pressure and high cholesterol, so nothing new there. The key factors that turned me around later were actually (1) dropping diet colas completely because these drinks were stimulating my craving for foods (any type) and (2) recognizing that humans are not designed to be sedentary, and we need to be physically active. While working I rode a bike 8 miles to work whenever the weather allowed. I am just recently retired so I have time to walk for miles, which I now love. I think of it as being free, like a kid again, where free time is my time. Same goes for riding the bike. However, the best discovery for me has been to swim every day. I was surprised at how hard it is for a new swimmer to swim for 30 or 40 lengths of the pool (25 yards). More on that below.

      Exercise is not emphasized enough in my opinion, and worse yet people are forced into a living where they have difficulty scheduling needed exercise. I highly recommend people try swimming laps for their daily exercise. When I started last September I struggled to do 10 laps (1500 feet), and slowly increased to 20 laps. I lost 10 lbs in two weeks and started feeling better than I have since I was 30. Then I figured out that the biggest problem to keep going is mental (Duh! think all the athletes), so I keep going and going. Now I am down to 146 lbs, my blood pressure is 75/120 and my cholesterol is under control. Just this week I reaching my first goal of swimming a mile (36 laps). Now I want to improve my time. I am motivated!

      In the last 17 years I have tried running and other exercises but when I started swimming everything changed for the better. Also I changed my diet and try to keep active most of the day. My biggest recommendations are NO soft drinks and go light on caffeine if you must have some, go mostly vegetarian for diet is good, but mostly eat real, fresh foods if possible, and swim for exercise because you can’t hurt your joints in the water, plus you get a great cardio workout in a relatively short time. This is feasible in a busy schedule if you discipline yourself to stick with it.

  4. HotFlash

    When is a primary not a primary? Pulled this off a Reddit/Bernie page:

    Holy shit. Are you kidding me?

    Go to that page. Scroll to the bottom and hit “I’m not registered with a recognized party can I still vote?” or whatever. Arizona has an open primary law it says, you can vote with one party or the other.

    The catch is that Arizona doesn’t consider this to be a primary. Its the “Presidential Preferential Election” or whatever the hell and isn’t a ‘primary’.

    1. Qrys

      The catch is that Arizona doesn’t consider this to be a primary. Its the “Presidential Preferential Election” or whatever the hell and isn’t a ‘primary’.

      Sounds like “double-speak”, but unbelievably true:

      Is the presidential preference election a primary?

      No, the PPE is not a primary election. The primary election will be held on August 30, 2016 and will not contain presidential/vice presidential candidates. The PPE is strictly a preference election and the only candidates that will appear on this ballot are presidential nominees from their respective political parties.

      Can independent voters cast a vote in the presidential preference election?

      No, only voters registered with a participating political party may vote in the PPE.

    2. Massinissa

      What IS a primary in Arizona then? Do they have rules for ‘primaries’ but no ‘primaries’? Were they discontinued but with the rules for them still remaining on the books? Or is their ‘primary’ like early voting for the regular presidential election or something?

  5. sleepy

    We don’t meet 1st world standards in healthcare, education, or wages and, now, in elections. Maybe one is connected to the others?

    1. diptherio

      Which makes one question in how many areas we have to fall below “first world” standards before we admit that we’re no longer a “first world” country…

      1. nobody

        “In fact, in a country like Brazil, which of course is a first world/third world mix as the United States is…”

        — Nancy Scheper-Hughes

      2. sleepy

        I spent some time in Canada last year, and from a consumerist perspective, there was a notable difference in the way that Canadians overall seemed to dress better and drive newer cars than in the US. Plenty of fast food, but also plenty more choices with mom n pop diners and bakeries with good food.

        This wasn’t in the trophy cities of Vancourver or Toronto either. This was small town western Ontario and Manitoba. Not to idealize Canada which has plenty of dumpy places like the US does, but overall a difference enough to make an impression.

        1. frosty zoom

          in the last municipal election in my hometown in canada, we had voting machines for the first time. my protestations were met with blank stares. in the hometown newspaper the next day i was heartened to see that i wasn’t the only one protesting –

          – until i read that the protest were about the machines displaying an american flag instead of a canadian one.

          don’t worry, lad, we’ve got truckballs and rolling coal, too.

          1. Massinissa

            Thus continues to recent trend of Crapification that has now spread to Canada.

            At some point all countries will undergo Crapification.

      3. no one

        Not to mention that we did this to ourselves. No one invaded us, nor was there any devastating natural event, nor was was there a vast public health emergency. Merely unleashed capitalism. Let this be a lesson to future generations.

        1. sleepy

          The thing is too, that there is no willing compromise on the horizon. We seem headed to an abyss with the captains of industry revving it up to full steam ahead. I understand the nature of capitalism is unending expansion, but at some point one would think that TPTB would understand that our slow motion disaster ultimately kills the golden goose.

          1. frosty zoom

            these folks will cash out well before the golden goose is cooked in kerosene and lymph. then it’s off to the well-protected sunset.

          2. Massinissa

            The elites are transnational. They can crapify countries and loot them until theres no more eggs, and go on to the next goose, wherever that may be.

            This is a capitalism worse than what Marx was describing, because at least 1800s capitalism still had borders and elites that were still nominally beholden to national interests.

      4. cwaltz

        I actually lived in a third world country courtesy of Uncle Sam for a year and a half and have already come to the conclusion we’re there.

        Oh we’re the nice end as far as third world’s go since my daughter isn’t forced to sell her body after managing to make it through sixth grade. However, when you start to question whether or not it’s safe to drink the water it’s time to admit your country is no longer part of the “developed countries”, couple that with our sketchy justice system where a rich pedophile gets off but a poor black child gets gunned down for having a toy gun and you have to admit your really not very developed at all.

        1. James Levy

          Back in 1989 Eric Hobsbawm, my professor at the New School in those days, told me that America had 1st World Amenities but 3rd World Services. I was shocked then. I’m not shocked today.

          1. Massinissa

            The difference between then and now is that now we are on our way to losing the amenities.

    2. andyb

      It aint the people who vote that count, it’s the people (or the machines) that count the votes that determine elections. BTW, with the 17 now down to 3 on the R side, don’t we all think that the AZ results indicate that it’s time to eliminate early voting, especially 30-60 days prior to election day? A lot can happen in that time period; dropouts, candidate implosions.

  6. RabidGandhi

    W/R/T the Brazil protests:

    The Intercept article posted in yesterday’s links gave some insight into this, but the nanny-photo-gate article in today’s links shows how easy it is for the narrative to be sidetracked into identity politics. For years there has been this simplistic narrative in the media and elsewhere (Hi Jim Haygood!) that the left of centre governments in South America represent a some kind of socialist revolution and speak for the poor and downtrodden. This obviously ignores the fact that presidents like Lula were very pro big business and that Barazil’s greatest austerian this century has been Dilma Rousseff. So the idea that the left and the downtrodden are either enamoured of Dilma or are captive to their masters’ political opinions is simplistic and insulting.

    There are serious collectives to the left of Evo, Kirchner, Correa and Rousseff who have raised serious concerns about these presidents’ “market friendly” stances and they don’t deserve to be grouped into the same box as the rightwing golpistas filling the streets of São Paulo. That said, the process against Rousseff and the media hysteria around it is a total joke.

    1. Johnnygl

      Lula and the PT may have moved to the right pretty substantially, but they doubled the minimum wage and massively expanded bolsa familia. They also used public sector to invest in the economy. Those things should not be taken lightly, even if the corruption stinks and they played nice with brazil’s brazenly parasitical banking sector.

      1. RabidGandhi

        Absolutely. By no means do I want to diminish that PT was a vast improvement over Cardoso’s neo-liberalism or the repression of the dictatorship. But the complaints against Lula/Dilma from the left are not about corruption (which is really just an excuse for a coup), but are about the financialisation of the economy under Lula, the repression of aboriginal rights and environmental groups, and the austerity imposed under Rousseff (she had Joachim Levy as her FinMin for crissakes).

        All of these valid complaints get neatly swept under the rug when it becomes about identity politics instead.

        1. pdehaan

          Agreed, and despite austerity and tending “nicely” to the corporate and financial sectors we’re STILL facing a coup in Brazil.
          A very good article by Pepe Escobar, btw, yesterday on RT. I wasn’t always sure about his take on silk routes and pipelinistan, but his insight on what’s currently happening in Brazil I find to be spot on.
          As far as Portuguese language articles go, I was intrigued by an article with the promising title of ‘The end of the New Republic’, laying out a bit the history of the Workers Party and the different alliances over the years.

    2. Lambert Strether

      I remember that the first wave of Brazil protests a few years ago (2013) was based on transport costs and sparked by local collectives. Within days this was hijacked by whatever coalition El Globo is part of into a “middle class” protest against corruption. And of course, our press covered this as continuity rather than discontinuity.

  7. Steve H.

    I’m just one person, but…

    to wileyp
    I have been a precinct captain for the Democratic Party. While it is still working at the local level, I am utterly repulsed at the manipulation, voter suppression, and at the end of the day corruption of the national DNC. What the fuck are you people doing over there?

    The only answer to that that makes sense to me is that the DNC is protecting corporate funding. The forked tongue is sticking out the side of the mouth, and the DNC has become, at the national level, a 1% organization.

    Let me be clear. I’m not going to squeal and puff up a third party. I am going to support FBI investigations into the corruption, I am going to encourage representatives FROM BOTH SIDES OF THE AISLE to pursue Senate investigations. You assholes have seriously put me in a position of forming alliances with teaparty numbskulls, and I will not forget.

      1. diptherio

        You assholes have seriously put me in a position of forming alliances with teaparty numbskulls

        As a friend of mine used to say all the time, “it’s funny because it’s true.”

        The silver lining is maybe we all gain a little more understanding for those we disagree with, due to working against a common enemy. While I’m no Reagan fan, I think he might have been on to something with that whole alien invasion scenario.

    1. FroggyGoesABoiling

      Your response, Sir, is the embodiment of this image:

      As the old song goes: “They’ve got the guns, but we’ve got the numbers”

      Now, think about this for a second you ‘Elites’ desperately trying to keep the show running exclusively for the benefit of your smarmy effete filthy-stinking-rich selves….what if the 2 polar opposites on the street finally unite and have both guns AND numbers?

      Ponder that for awhile, Banksters, as you eat your artisanal chocolate and snort your flaky white cocaine off your high class escorts ass while wallowing in benjamins on your silk sheets.

      “…May take a week and it may take longer
      …Gonna win, yeah, we’re takin’ over, come on!

      Your ballroom days are over, baby
      Night is drawing near…”

  8. Eduardo Quince

    Maricopa County’s top election official is a republican. If she wanted to suppress the vote in minority precincts, why not wait until the general election, when such voter suppression would help republican candidates? By doing it in the primary, she’s just tipping the public off to her nefarious intentions without benefitting her party. Surely she’s not that dumb. Am I missing something?

    1. aletheia33

      it’s been suggested that this was a trial run for the general. perhaps not strictly necessary, though, since she seems to have got plenty of practice already in the general in 2012.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Practice is good.

        Ran in 2012 and you would have been more experienced in 2016.

        Run in 2016 and you will benefit from that in 2020.

    2. frosty zoom

      you must remember the dollary clinton is the republicans’ first choice. the republican candidate was helped.

      1. Eduardo Quince

        Point well taken (even if you’re being facetious) but the republican base despises dollary with a passion and the conventional wisdom is that repubs would much rather run against Socialist Bernie than dollary (even though Bernie polls better against repub candidates).

        1. bob

          They don’t want to run AGAINST her, they want to co-opt her.

          They did. She was their choice from the beginning.

          1. cwaltz

            The GOP is taking a page out of the Democratic playbook. It’s easier to let the other guy do the dirty work and then use it to lather up your base at election time.

            I can hear it now, “We’d totally have passed biblical law if only you had given us a veto proof majority of 67 in the Senate.”

        2. NotTimothyGeithner

          The msm conventional wisdom, but I believe plenty of GOP politicos understand the importance of the appearance of integrity to the electorate. Kerry flip flopped while 43 meant what he said.

          270 is a hard number to reach for the GOP. Kerry’s Clintonista campaign was 10,000 votes away from winning, and the Kerry campaign was terrible.

          Depressing Team Blue turnout is the only viable path to victory for the GOP, and they know Hillary is that candidate.

          1. Eduardo Quince

            Good point. I didn’t think of that, probably because I assumed that Obama was the only 11-dimensional chess player.

        3. RP

          Also agree Clinton is their first choice.

          Bernie crushes Trump or Cruz beyond what voter suppression could realistically cover, and they know that.

      2. neo-realist

        If the GOP kicks Trump off the ticket, which I believe they will make an effort to do, then an “establishment” hard right republican becomes the first choice. The voter suppression trial run gets more understandable that way.

    3. HotFlash

      Yes, you are missing something. I repeat my comment from earlier as you are asking specifically.

      The Republicans are surely reading the polls and don’t want to run against Bernie in the general any more than Hillary likes running against him in the primary.

      Reminds me of the old joke about lawyers and sharks.

      This would not be the first time that the Democratic and Republican establishments have made common cause. Anyone remember Ned Lamont?

        1. ambrit

          “…the Dems have only gotten more corrupt.”
          Huh? Since ‘B—job Bill Clinton’ the Dems have become more corrupt? How is that possible? My level of Cynicism has reached negative interest rates, and there’s even lower?
          On Lieberman; why not make him officially Senator from the ’51st State’ and have done with it.

  9. RabidGandhi

    The money quote from Obama in Argentina was that the new government’s “market friendly” policies would bring billions of dollars in investment from US companies, of course raising the questions:

    1. Why would we want US companies to invest in Argentina when Direct Foreign Investment has been consistently proven to be a boon for the companies and desolation for the population of the country?

    2. The “rapid moves” by the Macri gov’t that Obama is praising are: over 110,000 lost jobs and counting. Devaluating the currency by 60% and tripling inflation while wages only went up by 25%. Removing trade barriers that protected Argentine industry. Cutting taxes for the wealthiest 10%… etc.– all in the hopes of enticing the Confidence Fairy. Of the “billions” promised for destroying the middle and lower classes there’s been less than USD 200M in FDI, which trickles down to practically nothing for the Argentine worker. So how much investment would make up for all this damage to the Argentine economy?

    1. Jim Haygood

      Foreign Direct Investment is a “desolation”? It doesn’t seem to have hurt China, or Mexico, or southeast Asia.

      Argentines claim that the world features four economic systems: (1) capitalism; (2) communism; (3) Japan; and (4) Argentina.

      It may be that in the alternate solar system of Planet Argentina, water flows uphill and FDI produces desolation. Although you’d think the country should have benefitted mightily from expropriating the former Spanish investors in Aerolineas Argentinas and Aysa (BsAs water utility) at knockdown prices, after they were kind enough to make some capital investments.

      Eventually the rinse and repeat cycle of encouraging FDI, devaluing and expropriating stops working. Maybe the raffish vida criolla is finally going to be given a rest?

      1. RabidGandhi

        Great examples. Argentina was legally able to rescind its privatisation contracts for Aerolineas and AySA because Iberia and Suez respectively both defaulted miserably on their contractual obligations to invest in the companies they pillaged bought. So for example in the case of Aerolineas Argentinas, Aerolineas’ loss was Iberia’s gain (kaching) thus gutting a public asset for a foreign private company’s gain– a perfect example of FDI desolating the public’s assets.

        The Chinese generally have tight restrictions on foreign ownership and only allow it to the degree that it produces jobs for chinese workers. And Mexico/NAFTA? Are you serious?

        And for the record, it’s just one irrelevant argentine’s opinion, but does anyone over age 8 believe that communism, capitalism and ratón perez exist?

        1. Jim Haygood

          From a comment by George Friedman earlier this month:

          “Mexico has the 11th-highest GDP in the world based on purchasing power parity, according to the International Monetary Fund. As Europe weakens, it will be in the top 10 in the not-too-distant future.”

          Mexico’s economy is 84% the size of No. 10 Great Britain and 83% the size of No. 9 France, on PPP terms. Mexico is advantaged by having twice the population, but this is still impressive.

          Argentina used to be the clear-cut No. 3 Latin American economy, after Brazil and Mexico. Now it’s running neck-and-neck with Colombia, whose trade agreement with the U.S. took effect in 2012.

          Trade pacts are flawed by special interest carve-outs. Nevertheless, Latin American countries with U.S. trade pacts — Mexico, Colombia and Chile, to name three — are among the better economic performers in LatAm.

          1. RabidGandhi

            Jim I will never understand your blindspot when it comes to LatAm. As a reader of this site you know all too well that GDP is not a measure of the health of an economy and much less of its equality. Mexico has tonnes of US subsidiaries that conduct intra-company transactions that are counted as GDP, yet it’s population lives mostly in squalor (I know, I lived there). It has huge oil reserves, also counted in GDP, that do not benefit the Mexican people.

            Your point about FDI in China was good, you should stick with it and drop your point about Mexico. Also feel free to rebut my point that FDI in Aerolineas and AySA were disastrous for the Argentine people.

            1. Carolinian

              Michael Hudson was making just this point in the Hedges interview. Every money churning Goldman scheme is counted as part of the GDP

              Someone, I believe, has proposed a “people’s GDP” that will take a broader picture of the general welfare. The founders were probably in favor of this with their “pursuit of happiness.”

          2. vidimi

            and it might even make the top 8 if you include the drug cartels /sarc

            GDP =/= prosperity

            and how much of it is from illegals in the US sending remittances back home? The US turned mexico into the philippines after they turned…well… the philippines into the philippines.

            1. Jim Haygood

              Sounds like an antiquated view of Mexico. As The Economist observed a couple of years ago,

              Mexicans are becoming too bourgeois to cross illegally into the United States.

              Mexicans are much more likely to have a degree before going north than they were seven years ago, and the number of years of schooling of 15-19-year-olds is now pretty similar to that in United States.


              Making the counterfactual case that NAFTA has somehow impoverished Mexico is a tall order indeed.

              1. RabidGandhi

                It is not a counterfactual and, lucky for you, it has been amply demonstrated by actual aggregate data and not the Economist’s fun little foray into border anecdotes :


                Some tidbits:

                –Mexico’s per capita GDP growth of just 18.6 percent over the past 20 years is about half of the rate of growth achieved by the rest of Latin America.

                –According to Mexican national statistics, Mexico’s poverty rate of 52.3 percent in 2012 is almost identical to the poverty rate of 1994. As a result, there were 14.3 million more Mexicans living below the poverty line as of 2012 (the latest data available) than in 1994.

                — The rest of Latin America saw a drop in poverty that was more than two and a half times as much as that of Mexico: 20 percentage points (from 46 to 26 percent) for the rest of Latin America, versus 8 percentage points (from 45.1 to 37.1 percent) for Mexico.

              2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                Debt free or not debt free graduates from Mexico?

                Like health care, we all may have to get our education south down.

              3. Mark

                “According to a recent government study, almost half of Mexico’s population now lives in poverty.

                According to Coneval, people living on less than 2,114 pesos (about $180) a month in urban areas (or 1329 pesos in rural areas) and who lack at least one of the basic social rights in the list are living in poverty.

                Extreme poverty (see map) is applied to people living on less than 978 pesos ($85) a month in urban areas (684 pesos in rural areas) and lacking at least one social right.

                By these definitions, 46.2% of Mexico’s population (or about 52 million people) are currently living in poverty. This has risen from 44.5% in 2008.

                Geo Mexico

                sept 2011

              4. Adam Eran

                Sorry, actual economist Ravi Batra observes that Mexican real income declined 34% after NAFTA (see Greenspan’s Fraud)–which is saying something in a country where half the population gets by on less than $4 a day.

                Why it was such a good idea that within a few months of NAFTA’s passage, the Clinton administration had to come up with $20B to deal with the capital flight issue (and mostly bail out U.S. banks).

                Sending a lot of subsidized Iowa corn down south put a lot of subsistence corn farmers out of business too. Sure, they grew the varieties of corn that kept the diversity of the corn genome alive, and corn is only arguably the most important food crop in the world… but keeping those exotic Mexican varieties around makes no money for Monsanto.

                Meanwhile, you’d have to return to the Great Depression to find a 34% drop in real income in the U.S….and everyone knows that sparked no great migration because Okies don’t count!

                Trying to make the neoliberal NAFTA into anything but a disaster for the Mexicans is a losing proposition. Its author–Carlos Salinas Gotari–drank the Koolaid with his Harvard education, and was so reviled he had to spend the first few years of his retirement in Ireland.

    2. diptherio

      Why would we want US companies to invest in Argentina when Direct Foreign Investment has been consistently proven to be a boon for the companies and desolation for the population of the country?

      Not to be pedantic or anything, but it’s because Obama is an American President and his job is to represent American interests — or rather, the interests of particular Americans — not Argentina’s. He supports policies that are expected to be a boon to US investors, that’s what matters. The desolation of the Argentine economy is an externality — it doesn’t even enter into the calculation.

      The same logic applies to your second question (maybe they were rhetorical?). If anything, negative effects on Argentina are a positive, as they weaken an international competitor. At best, they simply don’t matter.

      Obama will, of course, claim that these policies will help the people of Argentina, because he needs the masses to believe that he actually cares about that sh*t, since most people are not sociopaths and would be appalled if the actual reasons for policies like these were explained directly.

      1. Jim Haygood

        Actually China is the major foreign investor in Argentina, providing new electric trains for the capital’s shambolic commuter lines, renovating Argentina’s decayed freight railways to help export soybeans, and building a couple of new electric power plants to remedy chronic blackouts.

        The U.S. won’t be doing any of this, since its quest for global military dominance means the U.S. can’t even afford to fix its own dilapidated infrastructure.

        1. RabidGandhi

          Jim’s pretty much right. The #1 investor in Argentina is Brazil, but China’s #2. But the new Argentine Gov’t doesn’t see either of them as part of the “International Community”, so Macri and Obama are now playing dress-up at the ESMA as we speak.

          1. Jim Haygood

            I’m glad that I got to ride the 100-year-old, elegantly wood-paneled La Brugeoise cars on the Linea A subte in Buenos Aires, before they were retired in 2013.

            The replacement of those ancient WW I era veterans by Chinese-made (and Chinese financed) rolling stock is symbolic on many levels of a capital-starved economy, and of China’s drive to network with the developing world by enhancing infrastructure and standards of living.

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              We can all look forward to direct, non-stop flights from the South China sea to Argentina soon…on Chinese made jumbo jets.

          2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            How are Mao’s followers in South America coping with new money from the Great Helmsman’s home country?

            1. RabidGandhi

              In the great Maoist tradition we’ve used our RMB currency swaps to give the richest 700 families a sweet USD 5b tax cut while driving the peasants deeper into poverty.

              Further proof that Free Market Neoliberals are really crass class-conscious marxists. And vice-versa.

        2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          With unlimited global reserve currency creation fire power, we can both afford military dominance and a happy domestic serfdom.

          With wise leaders, we can prioritize and redirect resources to the latter, but there is no guarantee we will always get such public servants.

          From time to time, we will have both (dominance and domestic happiness), but Murphy’s Law says we are likely end up with only the former more often than not.

          That’s how we end up virtually bankrolling NATO and calling all the shots.

      2. RabidGandhi

        You’re 100% right. My questions were rhetorical and I do not see things from the US gov’t perspective but rather from Argentina’s.

  10. Dino Reno

    My personal theory based upon my personal experience is that every woman in America has nude pictures of herself hiding out somewhere, whether in her possession or with someone else, and I doubt Heidi is an exception. Maybe they are on file at Goldman.

    1. NoOne

      Oh my! The blatant misogyny of that post is so fkn scary.

      Based on my experience, I doubt that Goldman cares much about Heidi’s covered or uncovered breasts – they want her soul

      1. diptherio

        I don’t think DR’s being misogynistic, just pointing out that blackmail is one way to get someone to sign over their soul, and that these days, obtaining embarrassing items with which to blackmail one is easier than ever. GS, I’m sure, has contacts in the intelligence world. How hard would it be to take a look through her NSA file (which we all have, now) just to see what’s there? Surely, they are collecting all that information for some reason, and it sure isn’t to protect us from terrorism.

      2. perpetualWAR

        Yes, even the men who believe they are “enlightened” are guilty of extremely mysogynist comments.

    2. HotFlash

      Why yes, yes I do. I was an artist’s model for over a decade and there are many, many drawings, paintings and photographs of me nude. Some of them are very good.


      1. cwaltz

        It’s funny how Melania is supposed to be ashamed because she posed nude but none of the men who HIRED her to pose should be ashamed of themselves or for that matter the men who actually BOUGHT that magazine and viewed it. *rolls eyes*

        It’s a great big pile of who cares for me. Personally, I think Trump and Melania are a match made in heaven. He likely married her because she’s a pretty ornament to adorn his arm and she likely married him because he provides her substantial financial stability. It’s not how I’d choose a partner but they’re entitled to their own priorities.

        Meanwhile Trump proves himself to be a misogynistic douchebag with his “who would be a prettier first lady” twitter crap. Nothing like reducing women to their looks because we all know that women are the sum of their body parts. (tongue firmly in cheek.)

        1. vidimi

          strange that there wasn’t widespread outrage about the use of trump’s wife in an ad to attack him. or not.

      2. craazyman

        why don’t you post a few and let us be the judge? -)


        I studied drawing and painting for several years & always had tremendous respect for how hard the models’ job is. Just to stand there for 20 minutes or so, holding a pose, not moving — over and over for 3 hours with only intermittent breaks. It’s incredibly hard work. I can’t even imagine. Forget standing there naked. Just standing there period, for that long, like that. Incredible. They should make $210,000 per year and some blowhard running a bank should make $1 million (I’m not going to be churlish, running a bank is hard too and should be rewarded, but $1 million is enough for anybody).

  11. windsock

    Overthrowing Dilma Rousseff: It’s Class War, and Their Class is Winning The Bullet (Sid S)

    Thank you for this posting. It’s a fascinating read, but also saddening to watch a potentially great country follow the road to ruin we in the “modern west” have laid down.

  12. JSM

    To Eduardo: The Republicans don’t want to face Bernie Sanders, who is trouncing Donald Trump in swing states and some red states (see e.g. the results in Utah, Idaho). Donald Trump is doing the reverse to Hillary Clinton, and he hasn’t even yet savaged her on the national stage for her history of pay-to-play, etc., which Sanders has, mistakenly, this author is now convinced, declined to do. Why did the Republican Secretary of State of Ohio try to block 17 year olds from voting in the primary? Why did the Sanders campaign have to sue successfully to stop him? For the same reason. Unfortunately both National Committees have an interest in rigging the game against Sanders, and we haven’t even talked about how Sanders’ small-donor financing would force Democratic Congressional candidates back to their progressive roots, away from their corporate cash spigots, etc., etc. Remember Arizona, folks, it was far worse than the one article at Salon would have you believe.

  13. allan

    Bipartisan group of NY congressmen bashes Trans-Pacific Partnership

    Reps. Louise Slaughter and Chris Collins joined a bipartisan group of House lawmakers from New York Wednesday to denounce an Obama administration trade deal that they say would hurt the state’s economy and cost jobs.

    With the U.S. Capitol as a backdrop, the lawmakers said the Trans-Pacific Partnership would make it harder for the United States to compete with countries that pay their workers lower wages, manipulate their currencies to make their products cheaper, and do less to protect the environment and workers’ rights. …

    Slaughter and Collins were among New York House members who signed a letter sent Wednesday to President Obama outlining their concerns with the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Other lawmakers signing the letter included Reps. Tom Reed, R-Corning; Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook; and Sean Maloney, D-Cold Spring.

    The lame duck looms large.

  14. bob

    “Exclusive: U.S. to charge Iran in cyber attacks against banks, New York dam – sources Reuters”

    They’ve infiltrated a dam!- This is a huge joke. The banks won’t be named for fear of harming their stellar reputations as security conscious stewards of the Aristocracy.

    But, “Iranian hackers” were able to infiltrate the banks as easy as they were able to infiltrate the water behind the dam.

    This is the dam, by the way-

    According to sources deep inside the dam, the graffiti on the other side is 100 times worse.

    1. Jim Haygood

      After District Judge George Daniels found Iran guilty in the 9/11 attacks, this charge makes eminent sense.

      Iran is also responsible for the California drought, mold in houses, and making Doritos go stale.

      Just ask AIPAC.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Did anyone try to interrupt any speeches at their most recent get-together?

        Could they have prevented Trump from mouthing off more scary stuff there?

      2. RP

        Seen on twitter: photo of standing ovation for Trumpkin @ AIPAC

        Caption: “Jews applaud fascist”

  15. craazyman

    I never thought about that. How can computerized facial recognition work in a place like China where everybody looks alike? It seems too much to ask.

    Let’s be honest, some big black dudes do look a bit like gorillas. So do some big white dudes. Some even smell like gorillas so who could blame a computer for being confused. Some big fat ladies look a bit like hippopotamuses too! .

    maybe we should stick with fingerprints.

  16. Asdis

    Re: Butler wanted story – the outrageousness of that ad isn’t that they’re looking for a butler; it’s that they expect the butler to literally do everything, nearly 24 hours a day, for the entire clan, plus puppy. There was a reason the 1 percenters of an earlier time were fully staffed. the expectation that that one person can fulfill all their requirements, and do that to the highest standard, is modern to the core – and suddenly that 175K doesn’t seem enough.

    1. vidimi

      to me, the outrageousness is that this personal slave job is better remunerated than 95% of all other jobs out there.

      to go back to a time when being a butler was better than 95% of possible fates to humans one would have to go back to feudal times.

      the posting would have been better if the job title was seneschal or majordomo, though.

      1. Asdis

        Out of curiosity, would you find the position more acceptable at a lower salary? Is it the job itself that offends you?

      2. Antifa

        In a not too distant future, that $175k will purchase you a HAL 9000 to run your entire household, and every daily detail of your family’s life. Just watch your ass with those pod bay doors . . .

    2. Benedict@Large

      When I first decided to try to get a job crewing on a private yacht, I was warned by others doing so that there were tow kinds of boat. If you were lucky, you got a job with decent people and your work was respected. If you were unlucky, you got a job on what they called a “slave ship”. I was unlucky. Like the position here, I was the one-man crew on a 72-foot boat, and worked non-stop both top-sides and below. It started with about 11 hours a day and quickly moved up to 18. Plus the abuse.

      I lasted 13 days, jumping ship in the middle of the Bahamas after I was forced to work top-deck during a raging thunderstorm, barely missing being struck several times. I was given a check drawn on a (corporate) bank account from Delaware, pretty much useless where I was, and was just about broke. Fortunately, my ex-boss’ son (different boat, traveling with us) was a lawyer, and understood his dad would probably be arrested for abandoning me, and he paid for my flight home. I guess the crew position on the son’s boat was one of the other kinds of crew positions.

      1. vidimi

        in the add they mentioned other staff the majordomo would work with, so it’s not a job that requires doing everything per se, but it would likely be ’round the clock.

  17. vidimi

    that voltairenet article on syria was an eye-opener. very well researched and retold and definitely very helpful in getting closer to understanding what’s going on there.

    1. bob

      I’m reading that now, but also wishing that someone could put libya in a similar, french, context.

      It was all about france, with the US doing what it was told.

      1. Andrew Watts

        The French derive most of their natural resources from the neocolonial relationship between their client-states and multinational corporations. This informal empire based mostly in their former colonial possessions has maintained a longstanding rivalry with Libya. Gaddafi was not only a supporter of the pan-Arab movement but the founding leader, more or less, of the pan-African movement as well. It was the latter development which drove him into direct conflict with the French.

        When Chad was partitioned it was specifically divided into French and Libyan spheres of influence. In the wake of the partition the so-called Toyota War erupted due to disagreements and the failure to uphold the original agreement that partitioned Chad. During the war French Mirage fighters kept the Libyan air force grounded which was one of the primary factors in Libya’s defeat. Similarly the same tactic was used in the Libyan Civil War to defeat Gaddafi’s forces.

        I don’t really want to cover the civil war or the fallout from the western intervention. It played out exactly as it’s already done so many times before. The pan-Arab secular dictator is overthrown and the jihadists take over and spread their ideology in an environment bereft of any alternative except for the dominance of a foreign imperial power.

    2. JEHR

      France’s use of foreign legion troops in Syria may explain why Russia is more intent on bombing the “moderate” rebels than getting rid of ISIS. So much of foreign affairs have underground nuances that none of us knows about. Nothing is as it seems.

    3. vidimi

      have just been reading up on voltairenet and thierry meyssan and have to conclude that it should be taken with a grain of salt. of course, much of it is a history lesson and can be confirmed true or false (eg sykes-picot was indeed a colonial agreement negotiated in secret) but i wouldn’t count on the conclusions to be objective.

  18. Ernie

    I have been a subscriber to Rolling Stone magazine since the early days (news stand reader in the 1960s; subscriber since the 1970s) and have been consistently disappointed as they slowly went corporate over the last several decades. But the Hillary endorsement was the last straw — cancelled my subscription about five minutes after I saw it. It used to be a pretty good paper, but that was a long time ago now. Hunter S. Thompson rolls over in his grave.

    1. Llewelyn Moss

      Well, the Rolling Stone endorsement article was written by Jann Wenner who owns RS and other media properties. Business men love Neoliberal politicians after all. I doubt Matt Taibbi agrees with the boss — and he’s probably not at liberty to say either.

      And that Hellery portrait is ghastly. Hahaha.

      1. hunkerdown

        The copyright maximalism in the T-treaties is a key demand of the recording industry. Seeing how vengeful the Party and its 1%ers are, perhaps a Sanders endorsement would have been tantamount to announcing his departure from the industry.

        1. aumua

          That portrait though.. every time I click back to it I start laughing, because it’s so horrid. Maybe the portrait should be tomorrow’s antidote.

    2. Jim Haygood

      Time for formerly hip Rolling Stone to merge with the Wall Street Journal, and ex-Berzerkley bad boy Jann Wenner to join the CFR (if he hasn’t already).

    3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Rolling Stone is probably reflecting their older readership that likely overlaps with Hillary’s tortoise supporters.

      Some older people are young at heart and they will likely move on from Rolling Stone.

      The way to stay young is to hang around young people, I believe.

      1. neo-realist

        I just check in w/ Rolling Stone for the occasional Taibbi piece, w/ the help of NC. I suspect staying young involves remaining open to new ideas and art that pushes the envelope. Healthy diet (most of the time) and cardio helps—you can keep wearing the skinny pants and jeans that way:).

      2. cwaltz

        Heh. Unless you are a parent, then the young tend to make you old pretty fast. My 23 year old lead foot has aged me substantially in the past 2 weeks.

        1. neo-realist

          When I tell people why I don’t have a kid or kids, I tell them that it slows the aging process down and keeps my savings account relatively intact.

          I had one parent tell me that the benefit is that someone will take care of you when you’re old.

          1. pretzelattack

            that’s a pretty hit or miss proposition from what i’ve seen. but yeah the odds are you will get some level of care i guess.

      3. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

        Wenner states “anger is not a plan”.
        I beg to differ.
        But I think the endorsement will hurt, I can imagine a 23-year old fence sitter, he’s heard how bad Hilary is, but he might say “hey if RS is for her, she can’t be that bad”.

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          A 23 year old? What 23 year old reads Rolling Stone outside of the occasional Taibbi article?

  19. allan

    Starbucks CEO put on the spot about workers’ unpredictable work hours [Seattle Times]

    The email went out early Wednesday, an official-looking message to reporters saying that the Starbucks annual shareholders meeting, long slated for later that morning, was being rescheduled due to “exigent business needs.”

    That turned out to be a hoax — but one with a serious message for Starbucks. The meeting came off as planned, with the company announcing new business initiatives, CEO Howard Schultz talking about his vision for a more civil America, and Grammy Award winner Alicia Keys performing
    as the surprise musical guest.

    The email — complete with hoax website — was sent by Working Washington, a union-backed advocacy group that has been pushing for more consistent scheduling for workers, including those at Starbucks. …

    Starbucks has been one of the companies at the center of the worker-scheduling issue. Employees have complained they are scheduled for fluctuating hours, called in for unpredictable hours with little advance notice, and assigned to “clopening” shifts — those that call for working until late closing hours and then turning right around to work early opening hours.

  20. willf

    Regarding the article “Economics In a TIme Of Political Instability, there are problems:

    While technology-driven economic transformation is not new, it has never occurred as rapidly or on as large a scale as it has over the last 35 years, when it has been turbocharged by globalization. With their experiences and fortunes changing fast, many citizens now believe that powerful forces are operating outside the control of existing governance structures, insulated from policy intervention. And, to some extent, they are right.
    The result is a widespread loss of confidence in government’s motivations, capabilities, and competence. This sentiment does not appear to be mitigated much by a recognition of the complexity of the challenge of maintaining incentives and dynamism while addressing rising inequality (which, at its most extreme, undermines equality of opportunity and intergenerational mobility).

    So, according to the article, political instability is caused only by “technology-driven economic transformation”, not the policy priorities of our elected leaders, and any increase in inequality could be a good thing!

    But on another level, these trends may actually be healthy, as they bring concerns about globalization, structural transformation, and governance – which have so far been expressed mainly in the streets – into the political process. This kind of direct connection between citizens’ concerns and governance is, after all, a core strength of democracy.

    Left out is any mechanism whereby citizen’s concerns migrate from “the streets” to the political process. The authors mention a “direct connection” but never talks about it in detail. Is rising political instability cauding this “direct connection”? Or have I simply read incorrectly?

    And you have to love this line:

    This sentiment does not appear to be mitigated much by a recognition of the complexity of the challenge of maintaining incentives and dynamism while addressing rising inequality

    Oh, those stupid people, why can’t they realize how complicated it is?

    There is some good history in this article, but the authors’ point of view is so out of touch with the lived experience of millions of Americans that it’s hard not to find their analysis ridiculous.

    1. diptherio

      To sum, if I may: the author fails to name, and so assumes out of existence, rank corruption, which is what has been guiding our policies for some time now (see Gilens & Page, 2014; and Clinton & Clinton 1978 – present).

      “Incentives” and “Dynamism” must be maintained (meaning what, CEO compensation levels and faux groaf?), while income inequality (the result of corrupt policy making) need only be addressed.

      Addressed. You know, like when you send a letter by snail mail, you address it. “The check’s in the mail,” you say. “Don’t worry, it’s been addressed. Would I lie to you?”

    2. Steve H.

      Here’s a readability score exercise:

      – This sentiment does not appear to be mitigated much by a recognition of the complexity of the challenge of maintaining incentives and dynamism while addressing rising inequality. [Grade Level = 19.1]

      -This feeling does not look to be helped much by a seeing of the complexity of the problem of keeping pay and activity while speaking to rising differences. [12.7]

      – This feeling does not look to be helped much by a seeing of the mixed up problem of keeping pay and keeping busy while speaking to rising differences. [10.6]

      The sentence structure is too nested and complicated itself. Paring thus:

      – This feeling isn’t helped by the problem of keeping pay and keeping busy while speaking to rising differences. [9.6]

    3. NeqNeq

      I will piggy back willf and proffer that the metric being used by the underlying study is insufficient to reason to accept the conclusions of either piece.

      The metric being used is changes in party votes (which result in seat flips for the US). The problem is that for the metric to be useful for the conclusions the authors wish to make, there needs to be actual differentiation between party outcomes. If campaign promises/feels do not manifest into significant changes in outcomes (even if changes on the margin occur), then it is unsurprising that voters flip repeatedly. Thus, the “instability” is the result of electoral stability with regard to political outcomes.

      In the US, at least, many voters seem to have a “pox on both your houses” attitude precisely because they are seen as delivering the same end results. Especially in matters concerning the economic structure which does so poorly for them.

  21. vidimi

    the belgian ministers of the interior and justice offered their resignations which were rejected by the prime minister charles michel. this underscores that the bombers were known to the state and thus the fact that they were allowed to pull such attacks off suggests that the sense of failure the two resignations convey is warranted. turkey even warned the belgians when expelling the brothers earlier.

    boston, paris (1 and 2), san bernardino and now brussels were all the doings of suspects known to law enforcement with a history of extremism. so why do they want mass surveillance when they can’t even do targeted surveillance properly?

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      We have to be creative and think like they do, thus we can anticipate.

      It seems we are behind the curve on a lot of things, and we are always explaining, afterwards, what they are doing.

      For example, we are now hearing why they have been recruiting family members together.

      They do, we explain.

    2. Pavel

      Methinks these airports would benefit from hiring a more reliable “security” company. Here is some info about the one managing the Brussels airport:

      The aviation and general security services firm ICTS handles security operations at Brussels airport, the scene of a bomb attack yesterday morning….

      This will not, however, be the first time that ICTS has come under scrutiny for possible security lapses leading to a ‘Muslim terror attack’.

      As the provider of security services to Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport and United Airlines and US Airways, the firm’s security system was criticized for somehow allowing erstwhile ‘underwear bomber’, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, to “slip through” and board Northwest Airlines Flight 253 to Detroit with explosive materials on Christmas day 2009…

      Unlike most alleged Muslim terrorists who usually bring their passports to the scene of their ‘suicide attacks’ (and often leave them there for police to find) Abdulmutallab apparently arrived at Schipol airport to board his flight to the US with a one way ticket, no luggage and without a passport.

      Now usually this would have spelled a premature end to his planned attack, but according to Detroit attorney and eyewitness to events at Schipol, Detroit attorney Kurt Haskell and his wife Lori Kurt Haskell, Abdulmutallab benefited from the help of a sharply dressed Indian man who was able to escort the youngster to the boarding gate where he told the attendant that Abdulmutallab had no passport but should be allowed on the flight anyway. When the sharply dressed man was told that he would have to speak to the security manager, he did so and successfully planted the knicker bomber on the plane….

      But ICTS’ security faux pas’ don’t end there. In December 2001, they somehow managed to let deranged shoe bomber Richard Reid, onto his Miami-bound flight in Paris, and this was after ICTS had cleared Reid through security at Amsterdam airport on a flight to Tel Aviv in July 2001 for what was apparently an all-expenses paid week-long trip to the Israeli city. What precisely he did there remains a mystery. Reid later said that ICTS/El Al had failed to detect that he had explosives in his shoes on the flight to Tel Aviv, an amazing revelation considering the Israeli airline’s tight security and the fact that, six months later, they were responsible for letting him board the Miami-bound flight with the very same type of ‘shoe bomb’. Israel had not informed British, American, or any other security agency of their concerns about Reid. Reid’s aunt, Claudette Lewis who raised Reid in south London, was quoted as saying she believed her nephew had been “brainwashed”.

      ICTS also somehow missed several of the alleged 9/11 hijackers who allegedly flew out of Boston’s Logan airport on September 11th 2001. ICTS also handled security for London’s bus network during the July 7, 2005, ‘suicide’ bomb attacks. In fact, two of its subsidiaries, ICTS UK and ICTS Europe Systems, are based at Tavistock House, Tavistock Square in London, scene of the London Stagecoach bus bombing that day.

      Former Israeli Intel Operatives Run Security at Brussels Airport

      So remember ICTS and their “security” next time you have to take your shoes off at the airport. And remember that the “underwear bomber” was the excuse for Michael Chertoff to call for enhanced (“nude”) X-ray scanners at the airports — conveniently made by his company Rapiscan.

    3. Benedict@Large

      People are figuring it out. On terrorism, our leaders are failing us. Why, for example, aren’t any of them suggesting a disengagement in the Middle East as a solution? That area has had its ass kicked twenty-five ways to Sunday, and really needs to be left alone for a while, so they can figure out what they need to remake their own society. They don’t want to be like us, and they shouldn’t have to be. Is that really so hard to figure out?

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef


        Like ‘let them fight it out?’

        That would be another position I disagree with Sanders.

        I think we need reparation, sorry, foreign aid or Marshall plan, first, after officially acknowledging the mistake of going there in the first place.

        1. Higgs Boson

          That’s reasonable but it costs money. (Never mind the trillions already spent and the countless lives already destroyed.)

        2. sumiDreamer

          Could not agree more – the Marshall plan should include orphanages, ongoing health screenings of people exposed to du, trauma studies, proper funerals for victims – lots of innovative corrections.

          And could we please just have some WAR CRIMES convictions while we’re at it? There can be no reconciilation until there is accountability. And that goes double ditto to get the US to return to the rule of law.

        3. TomD

          We did try a Marshall plan of sorts in Iraq, but did it so poorly it made things worse. Primarily, the conditions of running security checks on Iraqis took so much work, US contractors brought in Pakistanis to do the work. So not only did the money not reach Iraqi hands, but we caused immigration and racial problems.

          It’s hard to imagine that there is any policy the US or Europe could pursue that would cause any good to happen.

          1. Antifa

            Well, my grandma always said you can’t go wrong with cookies. She made the most delicious white chocolate chip cookies — really, she could have started a national chain. The trick was melting the chocolate chunks with some fresh lard so it had a . . . oh wait.

            Never mind.

  22. ScottW

    Arizona characterized the Democratic Presidential Primary, not as a primary, but as a “preferential election.” Primary elections are open, while this party contrived “preferential election” keeps independents (Sanders strong suit) from voting for him. Add to that Hillary’s better performance with early voters (see one of the linked articles) with the complete lack of same day polling places and you have a suppression of Sanders’ voters. It really matters not if Sanders would have won or lost AZ, only that he would have gotten more votes and more delegates.

    Everyone needs to go out and vote! What a load.

    1. Jim Haygood

      One proposed initiative in Arizona (still to be qualified with the requisite 225,963 signatures):

      Open and Honest Elections Amendment: Our current taxpayer-funded party primary system treats candidates and voters differently based on political party affiliation.

      This initiative creates an open election system where every person qualified to vote, including those not affiliated with any political party, has the right to vote for the candidate of their choice.

      All candidates will be subject to the same requirements to appear on the ballot and candidates will all appear on the same ballot regardless of party affiliation. The two candidates receiving the highest number of votes will run-off against one another in a general election.

      This would be sweet payback for the corrupt Depublicrat regime, with its D and R cattle corrals.

      1. Arizona Slim

        ISTR reading that our state’s largest voting bloc is Independent. And we Indies are tired of being treated like second class citizens.

        Let us vote in ALL elections!

    1. Massiniss

      What I don’t understand, is why people still read DKos. Do the typical users not hear about writers and commenters being banned for endorsing niche opinions, or worse, do the typical users agree with such bans? I don’t read the comments, or for that matter the articles, so I have no idea

  23. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Should Sanders build a progressive movement?

    Are we shifting to another goal or are we adding a second goal (all on one initial try)?

    If we are shifting to another goal, of building a progressive movement, an in-your-face speech at the same place Hillary kissed the ring, or confronting the last 8 weak years would be nice.

  24. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    A message to the elites.

    No man is an island.

    In fact, isolation confinement is deadly.

    We humans are social animals.

    We need other humans.

    Furthermore, our brain needs exercise – ranking and categorizing is one of them. “This is the Alpha, and you are nothing.”

    That is, rich humans need poor humans…always.

    Without poor humans, rich humans will probably go insane…sort of like being punished by isolation.

    Hopefully, rich humans are wise enough not to killing that golden goose.

      1. Massinissa

        They could probably pay half the poor to kill the other half, not once but several times, and still have more poor than they needed.

  25. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    San Francisco’s $175K butler.

    That’s trickle-down in action.

    Finally, the rich (or at least one) are doing the patriotic thing to stimulate the Bay Area economy.

  26. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    “…like interval sprints (and full on, 30 seconds at your max, 2.5-3 minute rest interval), 20 minutes of that is more beneficial than longer periods of jogging, for instance.”

    That’s something a Neanderthal hunter-gatherer might do in a hunt.

    There is a philosophy that one’s diet must match one’s lifestyle, in this case, a Paleolithic diet.

    One’s brain cannot evolve faster than one’s physiology or one’s metabolism. Such discrepancies might lead to extinction.

    1. pretzelattack

      hmm i don’t think i can go full on for 30 seconds, but something to work on. these days i get my fitness tips at nc.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Me too.

        The best kind of education…one is learning, not to make some corporation richer, but to make oneself healthier, and thus, happier.

        1. pretzelattack

          yes, doing it for free, and it helps fight depression and such. I’m also learning the new limits my body operates under, after a pretty long time spent out of shape–sometimes kind of an intuitive process. i’m not even at a fitness club, though i was thinking about joining one. but i’ve gotten a few ideas here, like walking backward up steps, which i wouldn’t have thought of on my own.

  27. NeqNeq

    Re: Santa Clara jail cameras

    The linked story does not mention anything about criticism from county officials, but maybe it was removed during the last edit. Anyone know what the vilification is being based on? Seems to me that what she did is pretty problematic even though her intentions were probably good.

    First is the bypass of purchasing SoP. Those procedures are there for good reason. Not taking her to task on this point is irresponsible.

    Second is the security issue. Off the shelf equipment with no planned integration program is an embarrassment waiting to happen. Depending on how the cam systems are integrated into the jails network, they have the potential to allow attackers access to the entire network. She should be taken to task on this point too.

    Those are merely 2 areas which immediatly came to mind. I get that this is a feel-good story about cutting red tape, especially in light of the costs/schedule, but people should be concerned about this type of behavior. Officials choosing to ignore the rules, because they think something is important, is not something that should be condoned…especially when its law enforcement.

    1. Jess

      As the one who tipped Yves to this story, I disagree. First and foremost, her request for cameras was triggered by the suspicious death of an inmate at the hands of deputies. Second, the spread between her $761 purchase and the estimated $20 mil/2 years for normal channels isn’t a gap, or even a chasm. It’s an abyss, emblematic of the craziness of public bureaucracies. As the person whose personal and professional career, as well as her obligations to the public and the premise of our justice system, the sheriff was right to act.

      And yes, you’re right: mention of the criticisms leveled at her by outraged local politicians has been scrubbed from the article after the aforementioned realized that there was no way their criticism could be made to look good. But make no mistake; she stepped on a lot of sacred toes with that purchase.

      Sometimes, you just have to take action. Want some fun? Read up about how Chuck Yeager, Jack Ridley, and a renegade Bell engineer made unauthorized changes to the tail of the X-1 rocket plane so that Yeager could control the plane by the tail fins when air turbulence locked-up the wing controls. The result was a) breaking the sound barrier and b) a method of aircraft control now standard on all supersonic planes called “flying the tail”.

      1. NeqNeq

        I get that you are incensed by the estimated cost/schedule. You should be. Price and schedule estimates, however, are insufficient grounds for condoning this behavior. You wouldn’t condone the purchase/use of untested equipment from Best buy to handle confidential information by a State Department official just because its cheaper/faster than going through the normal process.

        IMO, you should be complaining that private business is raping the county….or even putting in your own bid (since bid requests had not yet come in). Even calling for an overhaul of the process would be better than cheering when government officials overstep the rules we set for them.

        Second, while preventing attacks on prisoners is important, she made the decision unilaterally. Which means that your or my (citizen) input on the matter was not relevant to her choice. That it coincides with our preference is immaterial to this case.

        Finally, just because “good things” can happen when protocol is broken, does not mean that just as many (if not more) “bad things” dont happen. The world is filled with tragic examples of what I mean…tons are airplane crashes.

        1. Alex morfesis

          Jeff draper who flypd the sheriff the byrd gave out a 24 million dollar contract in 2011 to install solar panels designed to save all of 14 million dollars over 25 years for the county…this is the brilliant person you want the sheriff to wait for…and follow procedures…brilliant…

    2. Alex morfesis

      Maybe I am confused…She…is the sheriff…and those who are there to help her do her Job basically flipped her the byrd…how is that a problem…

      and what living in the basement cyborg world do you imagine we live in…

      “allow attackers access into the entire network” ???…

      el chapo is going to bring his merry band of drug addicted killers to “spring” somebody ??

      Are a bunch of czech hackers going to do identity theft using incarcerated individuals and need to make sure the bad guy is still in jail…???

      The insubordination is the refusal to provide her what she needed…the person or persons who suggested it would cost 20 million needs to get suspended if not fired and everybody that person has talked to should be audited to see who is getting what bribes and kickbacks…

      1. Antifa

        For hacking to happen the cameras have to be internet connected. If all they do is record to a hard drive in a triple-locked room on the premises, no hacking. The sheriff can now see what her employees do on the job she hired them to perform.

        1. JerseyJeffersonian

          Well, perhaps the sheriff’s failing in the eyes of the embarrassed politicos lay in taking her responsibility toward the safety of the inmates seriously. I mean, think of the liabilities possibly incurred by the government if documentation was available of illegal activities by the prison staff toward inmates; beatings, sexual blackmail, “fight club” activities, supplying drugs or cell phones to inmates, among other possibilities. So tie the sheriff’s hands in controlling such activities, and prevent her from firing staff who engage in these activities, because beyond potential legal consequences for the government, heaven only knows, if that sort of ethical professionalism takes hold in even one corner of the governance structure, who knows where that might end?

          Oh, and even if the municipal authorities were “serious” about eventually paying for a prison surveillance system for $20 million dollars, this may have been a dog whistle solicitation for kickbacks on an epic scale for the contract(s). Perhaps even to Mr. Draper, who one suspects might be a likely beneficiary of a such a vig for the dodgy solar panel deal. And these things take time, you know; there may be a time-consuming clandestine “bidding process” going on in the shadows.

  28. twonine

    Quite a contrast from Tiabbi’s article from last month.
    “The Vampire Squid Tells Us How to Vote”

    The title for this new one could be, “The Vampire Squid Tells Rolling Stone to Tell Us How to Vote” instead of “Hillary Clinton for President”.

  29. meeps

    Richard Murphy, who surely has munched on many a crumpet with elitists, tells them like it is. Good. Basic principles of cause and effect seem ever to elude them. Who better to introduce these concepts over tea?

  30. Bill

    The FBI Is Trying to Crack the San Bernardino Case, Not Set a Precedent………..oh please !

    Let’s see if Tim Cook mysteriously gets sick or dies in some mysterious way.

  31. Kim Kaufman

    “Hillary Clinton for President Rolling Stone.”

    Twitter comment: Rolling Stone has gathered moss.

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