Links 5/16/11

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A warm welcome in Brussels Solar Impulse. Solar planes? Who’d have thunk it?

How Mass BitTorrent Lawsuits Turn Low-Budget Movies Into Big Bucks Wired (hat tip Richard Smith). You have to click through to see the movie poster…

The Rapture Index (hat tip Lambert Strether). It’s near an all time high.

How Fox News Outfoxes Americans Danny Schechter

Indiana Supreme Court: citizens have no right to resist unlawful police entry Evansville Courier & Press (hat tip Lisa Epstein). The article claims other states have made similar rulings which effectively undo part of the Magna Carta. Is this correct?

IMF head’s arrest hits debt talks Financial Times

Strauss-Kahn et les femmes : les histoires de trop and DSK inculpé, l’impossible candidature socialiste Rue89

Money Troubles Take Personal Toll in Greece New York Times

Greece: Last Exit To Nowhere? Edward Hugh

China sneezes, Australia calls an ambulance MacroBusiness

Geithner Emerges as Obama’s Indispensable Man Bloomberg

America Held Hostage Paul Krugman

Reforms will not improve the system John Dizard, Financial Times. The headline is not inspired, but the piece is wonderfully tart.

Banks find it easy to skirt federal laws protecting servicemembers from foreclosure ABC (hat tip Lisa Epstein). The sanctimonious Wells Fargo strikes again.

J. Crew sues shareholders M&A Law Prof

Antidote du jour:

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  1. russell1200

    The original case was very much along the lines of a probable cause case.

    Couple is outside arguing. Police are called. Couple goes inside. Police show up. Police want to look around. Husband says no. Police insist. Scuffle ensues. Police win scuffle and arrest husband.

    Without anymore facts at your disposal the Indiana Supreme Court could have stopped well short of “no right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers,” – which is a pretty scary level of permissible conduct by police.

    But I have seen so many of these “issue cases” get an extreme slant, I will wait until I see what the court actually said.

  2. skippy

    @lambert >.<

    @China sneezes, Australia calls an ambulance MacroBusiness…

    The list of issues is quite large.

    2nd largest trading partner in the weeds (Japan).

    Still waiting for it to dry out (some locations flooded 3 times) rain has not stopped.

    Aussies paying down debt, retail feeling previous point.

    Government stimulus work winding down (my nedk of the woods Clem tunnels, school upgrades, etc.

    Debt weighing with regards to international markets and critical rebuilding needs.

    Fire sale on state owned assets near depleted.

    Job listings way down.

    International investment in RE/CRE down

    Yaddie dada.

    Skippy…although my mob is doing its part, 4 joeys tend to spread the love around and wife sure does her part…oui…DESE lounges, and off to Noosa to_tend_to Hastings street…maybe I'll catch a fish…sigh.

  3. indio007

    The messed up thing about the Indiana Supremes ruling is the resisting arrest statute says in the text of it that there is only resisting arrest is the cop is in the lawful performance of his duties.
    Right from the ruling…
    “To prove that Barnes committed Class A resisting arrest, the State needed to demonstrate that Barnes knowingly or intentionally forcibly resisted, obstructed, or interfered with a law enforcement officer while the officer was lawfully engaged in the execution of his duties. I.C. § 35-44-3-3(a).”

    They ignore the plain words of the statute, ignore the 4th amendment and spit on the Magna Carta.
    We are headed in a bad direction.

  4. fresno dan

    Reforms will not improve the system John Dizard, Financial Times:
    Consequently, as Mr Rosner points out: “In the last quarter of 2010, the three largest banks accounted for over 56 per cent of all mortgage originations, compared to about 20 per cent at the end of the last boom.”

    Golly, did he expect Goldman to get 100% of the mortgages and all the money in the world in one fell swoop? These things take time…

  5. Rex

    The Fox News piece was pretty lame. I read it as a bunch of loose circular statements that zig-zagged back and forth, then a conclusion at the end that seemed to come out of nowhere.

  6. attempter

    The citizen right (and obligation) to resist tyranny goes back beyond the Magna Carta to antiquity.

    While I agree that this decision is in line with modern elitist jurisprudence and police practice, that’s just another indication of the totalitarian essence of corporatism, and how this system wants to wrench us completely outside of the entire context of the human experience and plunge us into a post-civilizational barbarism.

    There is a piece of black comedy in this. This court assures us, “we have the remedy in the courts” against police tyranny. That a “supreme” court could make a decision like this certainly instills confidence in the courts in general.

    I hope the people of Indiana recognize that they no longer have a legitimate court system, if they ever did before. The same has been true of the SCOTUS for a long time now.

    1. Jim Haygood

      From the article:

      ‘Both dissenting justices suggested they would have supported the ruling if the court had limited its scope to stripping the right to resist officers who enter homes illegally in cases where they suspect domestic violence is being committed.’

      One particular crime justifies illegal entry, but not others? Nice way to get the camel’s nose under the tent.

      Speaking of common law, assault and battery have been common law offenses back to the time of the Magna Carta. By contrast, ‘domestic violence’ is a politicized crime created a few decades ago, which is used to justify extraordinary state interventions (as the Court suggests).

      Welcome to the Conviction Machine. ‘You call, we haul,’ as the cops say in ‘must arrest’ DV cases. The Prison-Industrial Complex needs you.

      1. ambrit

        Dear Jim;
        Whilst reading “The Life and Times of Chaucer” recently I came across the interesting information that legally a man could beat his wife until the unconscious womans body spontaneously farted, a sure sign by the medical knowledge of the day that the woman was going into shock. So, even back in the Magna Carta days, domestic violence was a politicized offence. Indeed, it is assault and battery. Care to bring back trial by combat next?

        1. Max424

          “Care to bring back trial by combat next?”

          As long as I have a Mauser and the opposing litigant has an axe, I’m all for it.

        2. Jim Haygood

          Setting aside that DV wasn’t a recognized offense in the common law, you make exactly the same assumption as the politicized courts do: that the man is always the attacker and the woman always the victim. Thanks for illustrating my point!

          1. ambrit

            Dear Dan;
            Without reading the relevant documents i’d have to stick to that assertion. Men as a group do indeed view physical dominance as an acceptable strategy. Women as a rule, unless millenia of cultural observations are in error, tend to view more psychological methods as the preferred strategy. Could it be something to do with the fact that men are usually larger and stronger than women? Also, the end results of the two strategies are potentially very different. I’d say that if the womans strategy worked I’d head on out to the local and bitch and moan to the mates about how manipulative and devious she is. If the mans strategy worked I might have to take her to the doctor to get that concussion checked out. Which would you prefer. A tear in your beer or a dozen stitches?

          2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            One solution may be for men to start dating, living with and marrying women taller and stronger than they are…I think.

          3. ambrit

            Oh my, I’ve really stepped in it this time.
            Firstly, the good old fourth amendment protects us from the vagaries of the “police state” mentality, in theory. Reality is another matter. That’s where courts and politics come in. Notice, I lumped the two together, because they ideally work in tandem. Put that team over against the public interest, (we’ll leave that arguement for another day, shall we,) and you get the dynamic that tries to balance the two out. Extremist views from either end are non starters, unless someone appoints you emperor. (Remember poor Clau Clau Claudius hiding behind the arras when Caligula got his?)
            So, you’re trying to balance out two competing interests: personal freedom and protecting the lives of a class of citizen. Which do you favor?
            So far, that is what this mini arguement has been about. If the State tries to use this development to push further into private space I say, resort to politics to define the new boundary. No one said it would be easy.

          4. ScottS

            Obvious signs of domestic violence qualify as probable cause, so would be a reasonable search and seizure.

            What is up with this case? How did they get to the conclusion that signs of domestic violence aren’t probable cause, but are grounds to search a house? I read the article, but I’m still confused. This seems like more SCOTUS-style cherry-picking, a la Citizens United.

          5. Skippy

            Your voice is violence, your expressions, you bodily attitude *IF* someone else feels *fearful*. The accuser only has to express_they_*felt* fear and yes sexual orientation is heavily biased by societal programing…cough born a victim….then leveraged for political advantage by the very towers that created this paradigm / paradox.

            Skippy…pendulums swing thingy, but, advantage will be had.

  7. curlydan

    gawd, did Al Hunt knock that article out after a few drinks with Tim Geithner? Come on, Al, tell us something we don’t know.

    “[Geithner’s] means are relatively modest; his net worth is estimated in official disclosures between $770,000 and $1.8 million.” And all good Americans will light a candle for him tonight, hoping for a brighter and more prosperous future for this poor pauper known as Treasury Secretary.

    1. Max424

      That’s a classic.

      If I didn’t have to eat and sleep, I would jerk my cursor around and torture those little Lord Blankfeins all day.

  8. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    I think they are a new kind of Rubik’s Cube made of cats.

    I call them Rubik’s Cube Cats.

    And it looks like someone has, after much pulling, twisting cand contorting, put it back together correctly.

    I am speaking of rubber cats, not real ones of course. So, you animal chauvinists who blissfully grind happy, living carrots to death and call it healthy eating, you just back off!

  9. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Is that link correct – America Held Hostage By Krugman?

    I didn’t know he would sink that low.

    1. Anonymous Jones

      He’s sunk even lower than you imply! He’s not even the brains behind the abduction.

      Of course, it’s not surprising that he’s carrying water for the elites by taking America hostage but that the elites are using the ‘tutor’ as the ‘muscle’ this time! Perhaps even the elites now realize he is a ‘hack’ and is only useful as brawn.

      Strange times indeed.

  10. Max424

    Nude nuns with big guns is my second all-time favorite fantasy.

    My first all-time favorite fantasy? That I will reveal only to my true love; once I find her.

  11. Cedric Regula

    “A warm welcome in Brussels Solar Impulse. Solar planes? Who’d have thunk it?”

    The French and also Boeing.

    This one has the wing span of an Airbus, carries one pilot with no baggage, and flies 40 mph.

    Boeing is toying with the idea of a solar powered spy plane. I imagine it will augment out fleet of solar powered satellites.

    Happy Days are here.

    1. French Fry

      augment out fleet of solar powered satellites.

      Will the Endeavour Replacement Part be a SPES, Solar Powered Exosphere Shuttle? Will 44 MPH be fast enough to escape Earth’s Gravity? No, but adding to the orbit speed incrementally using solar can though a spiral of innumerable orbits accumulate enough velocity to reach geosynchronous orbit of space station. Add to this how inefficient are our first attempts to convert most of photons to *payload coulombs*, mix in efficiency according to Moore’s Law then we may have the makings of, at the very least, a freight conduit to space station.

      1. Cedric Regula

        Yes, well, solar cell effy of the really good kind for space apps was improved from 10% to 20% over about a 30 year period. So Moore would be rather disappointed with the pace of improvement.

  12. ambrit

    I knew it would happen one day: securitized lawsuits! Let’s call this one Classless Action.
    As a better person than me once said: “Send a Writ for Christmass!”

    1. David


      Something much like that was in Cory Doctorow’s recent near-future novel “Makers” where a couple of inventors want to sue a large company for copyright infringement. They lack the money to hire lawyers to bring a law suit, so they go to a Wall Street firm that will raise that money from investors. In return, the investors get a percentage of the damages should the lawsuit be successful. Come to think of it, I wonder whether a business specializing in investing in lawsuits could actually work. Oh yes, the novel is well worth reading.

      1. ambrit

        Thanks for the heads up. Does indeed sound like my sort of read. A funny take on legal proceedure also is Mack Reynolds’ “Gladiator at Law.” It’s an old “Golden Age” science fiction book. Him and Phil Dick are in that groove. I’ll check out Doctorow.

  13. MikeJ

    Regarding the Indiana Supreme Court decision…

    The jurisprudence surround the Fourth Amendment is a complex body of law. I believe courts should strive to interpret it to the benefit of individual citizens as opposed to law enforcement,though the courts haven’t always done that.

    However, it’s not always obvious that a particular search or seizure is unreasonable at the time it happens. That’s generally determined after the fact, and there are remedies available when a violation has occurred, such as the exclusionary rule. I think such judicial remedies are preferable to self help. If the police are attempting to seize evidence of a crime in violation of the Fourth or Fourteenth Amendment, nobody believes that a criminal suspect has the right to attack the officer and prevent him from seizing the evidence; you argue against admission in court. Likewise with an unreasonable entry and search of someone’s home. We can’t presume malign intent on the part of the officer making entry.

  14. Hugh

    The Krugman article is just another meaningless exercise in scare tactics, pointing fingers at Republicans but not Democrats, while showing a complete lack of understanding of what having a fiat currency means.

    The link for the Rue89 article just is to the homepage. The one for the article is:

    I suppose the most interesting aspect of the story of Tristane Banon is that the attempted rape she describes goes back to 2002. So DSK has been at this a while. The other is the charges of how his staff tries to cover his conduct up and punish his victims if they complain.

  15. jura

    The purpose behind requiring a warrant generally to enter a home is that the officer should not (unless it falls under clearly defined exceptions) make the decision whether to enter someone’s home. Entering someone’s home without knocking, announcing and presenting a warrant also creates a risk to all involved of unnecessary violence, rather than an orderly process of search or arrest where any irregularity can be contested in court.

    I see the decision not so much as authorizing self-defense by civilians, but as requiring police to obtain a warrant when the circumstances are not exceptional.

  16. ambrit

    Are the kittens pondering what I’m pondering?
    They can see the Rapture Index too!

      1. ambrit

        Dear ScottS;
        I find that ACME has all sorts of ‘unusial’ and ‘curious’ items in their catalogue. BTW we could always ask Snowball.

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