Links 5/22/12

Cory Booker’s Political Career Guided By Top Wall St Donors To Romney’s Super PAC, Republic Report

In Spain, Jobless Find a Refuge Off the Books, New York Times (h/t Martha)

J.P. Morgan Suspends Share Buyback Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Should Stop Trying to Gut Financial Reform, by Rep. Maxine Waters in The Hill.  Also, zombies should stop eating brains.  And scorpions should stop stinging frogs.  And drug addicts should just say no.  And yada yada.

Railroad worker crushed by roll of newsprint at Inquirer printing plant, Philadelpha Inquirer

Europe is driving full-tilt, foot on the pedal, into a brick wall, by conservative London Mayor Boris Johnson

Not so organic – USDA accused of conspiracy with agribusiness insiders RT

The Obama Administration and Chutzpah Info/Law… shocker that Obama lied about his transparency agenda.

A Different Take on Facebook, PIMCO CEO Mohamed El Erian… Hey are you bored running a trillion plus dollar bond fund or something?

JPMorgan Counterparty Platt Says Bank’s Loss May Widen Bloomberg

Double trouble at JP Morgan: trader’s losses could exceed $7bn The Independent

Secret Central Bank Aid Props Up Greek Banks CNBC

LPS: Mortgage delinquencies increased slightly in April Calculated Risk (Jaws theme…)

Facebook 11% Drop Means Morgan Stanley Gets Blame Bloomberg

* * *

D – 109 and counting. *

Lambert here:

Chaos is defined not so much by its disorder as by the infinite speed with which every form taking shape in it vanishes. – Gilles DeLeuze and Felix Guattari, What Is Philosophy?

NATO summit. Obama: “And the Chicago police — Chicago’s finest did a great job under, you know, some significant pressure and a lot of scrutiny.” “My Kind of Town”: image (via). “‘Get the old lady to the back!’ someone yells (:40). ‘She wants to be in the front!’ comes the reply.” What we need! “I am returning my medal today because I want to live by my conscience, rather than be a prisoner of it.” And what we need, too.

Our famously free press propagates the CPD’s crowd estimate: 2,000. Pictures say that’s low. (Interestingly, CPD estimate derived from surveillance cameras. If the estimate — incredible as this may seem — is actually honest, that means camera coverage is lousy.) OccupyChicago: 3,000- 5,000. The Guardian cites the density-based Jacobs multiplier, then splits the difference between CPD and organizers: 3,500 – 6000. The Guardian’s first commenter was there, and does the multiplication: 7,600 – 13,800.

Montreal. Photos: “Tuitiion [sic] fee protests – May 21.” If “tuition fee protests” is the frame, that’s a loser. However, Gazoo columnist Peggy Curran uses “red square” movement, which is much fuller of win, red squares being a wearable, non-mask article of clothing, a color (as in “color revolution”), and a useful symbolic geometry. It also has an unmistakable (if virtual) Occupy connotation, since Occupations tend to take place in city squares. Squares are also fractal. “When Arcade Fire [Yo! Professor!] backed Mick Jagger for three songs on SNL…, those red patches the band were wearing weren’t fashion statements, but very pointed acts of protest.” (Gotta say I prefer this icon to a 60s-style clenched fist — even if Otpor did use it.) “Yesterday’s unrest reached a climax with a blaze of [half-a-dozen] plastic traffic cones and construction materials lit Saturday during a melee on a busy downtown street.” Teh stupid, so but and Timothy McVeigh (or, for that matter, clinic violence) we’re not talking here. Today: Students march peacefully in holiday protest. Holiday? Probably no police over-time, so there weren’t any agent provocateurs to set traffic cones on fire or demolish the pavement. Remember: Always check their shoes!

1300 arrests over the life of the red square movement so far (United States: 7,223 for Occupy).

I’m just one of the tourists: “We didn’t actually know what was going on really at the start because…we didn’t actually understand the banners and stuff.”

CA-2. Congressional Candidate Andy Caffrey: “If I have to do it, I’ll smoke a joint on the Capitol steps and get arrested to draw national attention to what’s going on.” Obama’s lawyerly wording on marijuana. As ever: “I know that you believe you understand what you hope I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”

OH (Swing state). During the referendum, Romney came out in favor of SB5. Intriguingly, “On the same day last November when 62 percent of voters stood up for collective bargaining [and voted in SB-5], an even larger number—66 percent—backed a referendum item that was widely seen as a symbolic rebuke to Obamacare. ” Well, there’s no reason why support for unions should translate into support for a mandate to purchase a defective product (private health insurance) with money people don’t have.

MI (Swing State). “Green” Mayor’s Parkland-for-Train station scheme underwritten in part by slush fund. A D, if that makes a difference at this point.

MV (Swing state). Kirtland Air Force Base jet fuel spill 3 times larger at 24,000,000 gallons?

WI (swing state). “For fraud to equal “one or two points” in that election [as Walker says] you’d have needed 30,000-60,000 phony ballots. The proven fraud actually amounted to 0.0007 percent of all votes.” I wish the Rs would stop lying about this. Peirce: “If the Democrats can’t recall a governor of Wisconsin who breaks unions, wrecks public education, bleeds the state white on jobs and messes around with deer-hunting [!!], they’re more hopeless than I thought.” Has L’il Debbie kicked in that $500K yet?

Inside Baseball. “And those on the political extremes, especially those on the far right, tend to have the most simple speech patterns.” Indubitably! Joshua Green proffers shop-worn filibuster alibi: “Had the filibuster not applied [from 2009 on], the United States would have a market-based system to control carbon emissions … a public option … [Women] would have broader legal recourse against their employers. Billionaires would not be able to manipulate the political system from behind a veil of anonymity.” Well, when Obama had a mandate, and the Ds had control of the Senate, they could have used the “nuclear option” to abolish the filibuster with a simple majority vote. So that means Obama didn’t want any of those things. Right, Joshua? “Indeed, the irony of the [winger] race war narrative’s latest flare-up is that it comes at a time when national crime rates have reached historic lows — including reported hate crimes against whites.” Auctioning a vial of Reagan’s blood: “I was a real fan of Reaganomics and felt that Pres. Reagan himself would rather see me sell it rather than donating it.”

Elizabeth Warren. Pierce on the Cherokee flap: “There is something grim and nasty at work here that she cannot be too nice to see. And there is something grim and nasty at work here that local Democrats ought to recognize before they start sniping at her, and something national Democrats ought to recognize as a force to be defeated. Yeah, right.”

Green Party. Jill Stein: “[S]uch a thing as ending unemployment would never occur to Washington politicians because their corporate backers depend on the threat of unemployment to keep wages down.” Conor Friedersdorf’s response, in toto: “It’s a deeply confused claim.” Which is why he’s got a job, I guess.

Libertarian Party. LP of Delaware applauds Ron Paul, endorses Green Party candidate for Senate.

Robama vs. Obomney. “Jobs!!” and WaPo’s Fact Checker: “There’s no doubt that Bush owns an unimpressive record on job creation. But Obama comes in either last, second-to-last or in the bottom half among presidents since the Great Depression, depending on which way you look at the number.” “White House counterterror chief John Brennan has seized the lead in guiding the debate on which terror leaders will be targeted for drone attacks or raids.” Of course, Brennan served Bush, he’s pro-torture, and he lies about drones. Meaning he’s well within Obama’s comfort zone. And Pierce, because the man invects with a passion: “Zombie-eyed granny starver.” No, he doesn’t mean Obama.

Romney. “Romney will need to figure out how closely he aligns himself with George W. Bush and other members of his administration, including Mr. Cheney. … [T]he campaign was downright buoyant to announce the Cheney fund-raiser.” So Voldemort will get to speak at the RNC after all?

Obama. Fighting Romney on economy “[I]s what this campaign is going to be about.”

Booker on Bain. The Booker quote: “This kind of stuff is nauseating to me on both sides. It’s nauseating to the American public. Enough is enough. Stop attacking private equity [Bain], stop attacking Jeremiah Wright.” (This is a “Kinsley gaffe,” wherein Booker uttered an unspeakable truth about who owns him, and who owns the Ds.) Anna Marie Cox: “This is a little like saying vampires have done a lot to support the coffin industry; it’s not wrong but it misses the point.” So why’d Booker say it? “[Bain] were among his earliest and most generous backers.” Axelrod slaps Booker down: “In this particular instance, he was just wrong. There were specific instances here that speak to an economic theory that isn’t the right theory for the country.” What, neo-liberalism? RNC launches ‘I Stand With Cory’ petition. Cheeky! Booker to Maddow: “I’m very upset that I’m being used by the GOP.” Well, Corey, if you didn’t want to go to Milwaukee, why did you get on the train?

* 109 days ’til the Democratic National Convention ends with a chocolate-covered insect eating contest on the floor of the Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC. Yes, JFK’s boat.

* * *

Antidote du jour:

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About Matt Stoller

From 2011-2012, Matt was a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. He contributed to Politico, Alternet, Salon, The Nation and Reuters, focusing on the intersection of foreclosures, the financial system, and political corruption. In 2012, he starred in “Brand X with Russell Brand” on the FX network, and was a writer and consultant for the show. He has also produced for MSNBC’s The Dylan Ratigan Show. From 2009-2010, he worked as Senior Policy Advisor for Congressman Alan Grayson. You can follow him on Twitter at @matthewstoller.


  1. rjs

    glad to see you linked to the LPS first look; that nearly one in eight homeowners are still not paying on their mortgages has been the undercovered story of this recession…

  2. LucyLulu

    Angry tiger antidote again, eh? Are you unhappy in your new job, LS? If you want to talk, we’ll listen…….

      1. LucyLulu

        Ya think? It looked like “antidote du jour” went with Lambert’s links. Maybe they’ll clue us in who’s on the attack today……… and who we need to tread carefully around……..

        1. Aquifer

          Hmmm, well there’s the “***” that preceded Lambert’s stuff and there was “***” after it as well, so it looks to me as if the “***” are delineating, (kettling? :)) his stuff.

          Somwhow i just don’t get the feeling that Stoller and Strether are on exactly the same page when it comes to politics, but ICBW …. :)

          1. LucyLulu

            Very good observation. Missed those asterisks before the links. I believe you are right.

            Mea culpa, LS. It’ll be okay, Matt. Really.

          2. Lambert Strether

            I can make the formatting more visible, but people here seem to want to very light touch. Perhaps a “lambert over and out.”

            As for “the same page,” (a) in a situation that requires as much “bold, persistent experimentation” as our current one I don’t think it’s even possible and is almost certainly not desirable for everybody to be on the same page; and (b) I am very proud to be a guest host here, and that means with every poster here.

  3. LeeAnne

    “‘Get the old lady to the back!’ someone yells (:40). ‘She wants to be in the front!’ ”

    Lambert, has anyone reported on the big mature guy in the red scarf on this side of the line in a dialogue with the cops who later covers up the red scarf and something darker? -a scarf or sweater.

    That rushing technique being used by cops of demanding demonstraters get up on the sidewalk to commit suicide out of camera range and then crushing them against brick walls with no escape is gonna’ work one of these days if these militarized cops aren’t stopped -all over the world where they’ve been trained for military action against their own populations by US/UN. And, they can be turned psychologically to hate the masses of unemployed who neither wear the uniform of cops or the employed.

    I’m getting sick of the neglect of reporting on what’s really important even when its on camera and clear to see.

    I don’t see how this constant demand for suicide and deadly stampede can go unremarked but the theater of an old white haired lady in the foreground given so much play.

        1. LeeAnne

          Lambert, tts your link. Sorry I wasn’t back yesterday to respond. at :40. The portly big guy in the red scarf is clearly in that segment. He’s in the crowd on the demonstrators’ of police barricards talking to police who are lined up on the other side of barricades as he commiserates with them personally. A few seconds later in the same segment he’s placing a dark scarf or a sweater around his neck and covering up his bright red scarf.

          “‘Get the old lady to the back!’ someone yells (:40). at :40 ‘She wants to be in the front!’ comes the reply.”


  4. rbm411

    RE: Elizabeth Warren Story:

    She’s going to fight this story all through the election. It makes her appear that she used a non-minority status to gain advantage.

    1. Synopticist

      A cherokee swift boat.
      If she ignore’s it, they’ll kill her with it. Just because it’s bullsh*t doesn’t mean it wont work, the people that run these attacks know whay they’re doing.

      1. Aquifer

        Shucks, if i were her i would just come out and say “I am proud of my heritage, why should i not include it, to not have would have suggested i was ashamed of it, something to be hidden – another slap at native peoples …”

        This would at least get her more support with the Mass native folk, if nothing else, and turn the tables on those who suggest she should have left it out ….

  5. François Morin

    Letter from Quebec University prof (FB):
    An Open Letter to English-Canadians, who might be feeling that Quebeckers have taken leave of their senses

    Those of you who want to follow the daily protests in Montreal should watch CUTV, broadcasting live from the protests in both English and French.

    Twitter hashtags #ggi (General strike news) #manifencours (protest info). Usually there’s about 25% of the info in English.

    There’s usually a protest every night starting 8-9PM EST and there will be a mega-rally in Montreal for the 100th day of the strike today May 22nd.

      1. François Morin

        There’s plenty of French media personalities covering the protest, but if you want English media sources I found : @fagstein @EthanCoxMtl @OpenFileMTL @henrygass. Most French tweeters are able to communicate in English too and some occasionally do so.

        I would mistrust anything that comes out of the official English-Canada press, including the Montreal Gazette. They are constantly trying to use the widely held Anti-Quebec/Anti-French prejudices of many English-Canadians to discredit the movement. While the movement was widely lead by French-Canadians, on the ground English Canadians are included and made important contributions to the movement, CUTV (Concordia University TV) being the most prominent.

    1. Susan the other

      Altho it reads as if the US has been sidelined because of its ostensible stand on Kyoto and other political theatre, I must wonder if we haven’t cleared the way in a big giant step. By dismantling a dysfunctional world-dominating financial system which was way beyond its shelf life anyway. So that now, as the article from Globalist touches so gingerly: (We must) take the risk out of long term investments in green markets. They say they will do this by open information sources; fine and good luck. And they mention also that the investment required will be 2 Tr a year for 10 years. I think that’s pretty optimistic. They want to dismantle market barriers to the advance of this industry. This much-needed industry which is so vulnerable to profiteering and propaganda. I wish this effort well, but I think Roseanne is right – we need a veritable war – a military effort to turn it around and clean it up. That too can become an engine for our economies. Probably a more efficient one.

  6. SR6719

    Lambert (quoting Deleuze and Guattari): “Chaos is defined not so much by its disorder as by the infinite speed with which every form taking shape in it vanishes.”

    Hey, I thought we were finished with Continental philosophy and French theory and all that?

    That’s why I decided several months ago to stop posting weird stuff on this blog.

    Remember what Baudrillard said on the influence of French theory in America:

    “That was the gift of the French. They gave Americans a language they did not need. It was like the Statue of Liberty. Nobody needs French theory.”

      1. SR6719

        I agree, I even posted a comment related to this in yesterday’s links.

        “Le monde n’est qu’abusion” [The world is only deception], François Villon summarized in one line.

  7. Up the Ante

    “And it is not as if the markets will believe in these “firewalls” [cousin of the ringfence][read .. Inside Traders] , or not for very long. If they can prise away Greece, they will know they can prise away others. As long as the euro can break up, there is always a risk that it will break up. So it is frankly unbelievable that we should now be urging our neighbours to go for fiscal union. It is like seeing a driver heading full-tilt for a brick wall, and then telling them to hit the accelerator rather than the brake. ”

    The Inside Traders show astonishing confidence. A spectacle.

  8. Up the Ante

    Booker : “… Enough is enough. Stop attacking private equity [Bain], stop attacking [the Mankiw-fraud] .”

    1. LucyLulu

      This IS big. SpaceX is one of 5 private companies NASA is providing both significant funding and tech assistance to develop the technology to transport cargo and crew into orbit and to the space station (for now). Lockheed is another. Space travel has been officially privatized. Building the rockets/shuttles isn’t a big deal, private companies have always built the vessels for our space missions. They haven’t actually run a mission however, which is where NASA is providing support (and is by no means trivial). Ultimately, they will surely make the transition to travel beyond earth, perhaps providing access to needed resources (e.g. water from Mars) from other planetary bodies.

      Twenty years from now, will there be a Republican party talking about the private sector having had an exclusive role in developing the space travel business? Will they say the 1% deserves to keep all but a small slice of the galactic pie?

      1. Lidia

        LL, I dig what you are saying for the most part, but WATER FROM MARS!?!?! How can “water from Mars” compete with de-salinization even in the worst of energy scenarios? Hoping to be enlightened, =Lidia

      2. Jim

        Elon Musk is a primary fundraiser for the President. The Dems are more culpable than the GOP in ushering in the private sector to the space sector.

  9. Jim Haygood

    From the CNBC article:

    Mr Coene said ELA had to be cut off once banks became insolvent. “It is emergency liquidity assistance – not solvency assistance,” he said. The secrecy surrounding ELA creates grey areas, however.

    “Cutting off ELA would be the way to push Greece out of the eurozone — if that was wanted, or if Greece really wanted to leave. But I don’t think the ECB is going to take that decision,” said Laurent Fransolet, Barclays analyst. “I think the ECB would go to the political powers and have them take the decision”.

    Does anyone seriously believe Greek banks are solvent, after having suffered a deposit run amounting to several times their capital? Moreover, the assets backing their shrunken deposit base are severely impaired in value.

    Walter Bagehot, the English central banker who in the late 19th century advocated lending at a penalty rate to solvent institutions during a liquidity crisis, would be appalled at the degraded state of central banking in contemporary Europe.

    Both the ECB’s lending to obviously insolvent institutions, and the potential decision to stop such lending, are political decisions. German fantasies of the ECB as a larger-scale clone of the Bundesbank lie in ruins. So reckless is the ECB that it should install a statue of ‘Mad Ad’ Greenspan to acknowledge its shambolic intellectual heritage.

    1. LucyLulu

      Did you read the comments. There were a fair number who didn’t see a problem with it. They said they’d rather have their tax money go to corporations than the state government because the corporations will spend more of the money back into the economy.

      Not only is this not necessarily true, esp. now with corporations sitting with money on their balance sheets, but apparently they don’t realize the difference that the state doesn’t receive either must be made up with higher taxes elsewhere, or by a reduction in state-provided services/benefits, or both.

      GE seems to always find a way to come out ahead when it comes to taxes and federal funds, whether receiving bailouts, or getting tax refunds while making billions in profits, or paying low marginal rates.

      1. PQS

        I’ve learned the hard way to stay away from comments…except here at NC and other intelligent forums….reading comments will truly make you feel like you should Abandon All Hope….

  10. Aquifer

    An encouraging sign – with Friedensdorf’s Atlantic commentary on Greens, it appears we have at least gotten to the “ridicule” (past the “ignore”) stage re Green politics.

    He starts out with disdain disguised as “respect” – “The Green Party’s dearth of resources and the certainty that their nominee won’t win is one reason to give their candidates a listen” – and then launches in with a short shrift of Barr, the “Herman Cain of the Greens” – a birther number on Mesplay, but begins to stumble with Stein – can’t trash her personally, so he tries to dismiss her platform but is rather sloppy:

    On the one hand he claims her call for a “WWII scale mobilization” amounts to “..a civilian population that undergoes hardships as significant as rationing food, gas, and other basic supplies, and sacrifices comparable to the deaths of almost half a million Americans?” but then says
    “they just perpetuate the illusion that no hard choices need be made, and postpone the hard work of persuading Americans to make different trade-offs going forward.”

    Hmm, so his idea of necessary “hard choices” that must be made apparently means more than half a million American deaths? Sounds like he is a fan of the Catfood Commission ….

    He wants more “details” from Stein – what, a 2000 page manual like the ACA? At least his claims that this stuff “can’t be done” is a transition to the next “then they fight you” stage …..

    “But when you’re making a radical critique that’s unpalatable to most voters anyway you’re freed to tell it like it is …..”

    Actually methinks his problem is that the Greens are making a critique that is, in fact, quite “palatable” to most voters, are “telling it like it is”, and are getting a bit more attention than the duopoly would like which is why it is necessary for the MSM to stop ignoring and start ridiculing.

    Notice all the usual talking points emerging – “can’t win”, “spoiler” mention ala Nader, “utopian, unrealistic platform”

    This article is BS – but it is a good sign – the Greens are on the MSM radar screen – considered a target to be taken down ….

    I just hope folks aren’t as responsive to the “can’t win” “spoiler” memes as they have been in the past ….

      1. Aquifer

        Saw that – this is a theme she has been presenting over and over – instead of continually going on the defensive “no he (Nader) didn’t …” she goes on the offensive – “your politics of silence and fear got you everything you were afraid of”, and is another reason the more i see of this lady the more i like her …

        She needs to be in the debates, she could kick Romney’s (she already has) and Obama’s behinds out to the curb. I understand if they don’t let her in she plans on doing a live stream real time response just outside …

        1. Lambert Strether

          The last Green live stream I tried to watch was from some guy with a cat in a Brooklyn apartment who had technical difficulties. I forget the context now, but it was a national issue, and I was perfectly willing to post on it, throw some hits, etc. So, I whiled away an hour grinding my teeth and concluded they weren’t serious as a party. That had better not happen again.

          1. Walter Wit Man

            I agree that a party has to play the PR game if it gets big enough. It has to work on getting a good message out.

            But having a small time PR outfit does make the Greens seem more authentic. I’m suspicious of emergent groups, especially NGOs, that have really slick marketing right out of the gates (e.g. the get Kony people).

            So maybe the cat blogging snafus help it from the allegations that the GOP funds it as a way to weaken the Democrats.

            My advice to them would be to get slicker graphics and PR as cheaply as possible (just copy the big boys but utilize volunteers from Occupy or something) and to work on a MORE RADICAl message.

            If I were advising Stein I would have her focus on Single Payer health care and protecting Medicare. She should play up her Doctor role And maybe even try to join forces with Ron Paul. The two doctors could agree to disagree on health care policy (and Stein would have the more popular message), but agree on some other big issues.

            Also, in addition to focusing on health care, I would have Stein go on the attack against the Democrats.

            She should want to take a pound of flesh from the Dems. They deserve it. The Greens should respond to the Dem talking points about Nader getting Bush elected with an even more extreme response–“good.” “FU Democrats”, should be the Green message. Democrats are more evil than the Republicans, and the Greens should treat them as such.

            Of course that would really change the dynamic and the Dems and these articles would have to change their tone and go back to the utterly dismissive tone they used in the past. But this is good. We need a split from the Democrat party and might as well get it on.

    1. Walter Wit Man

      I just clicked over to read the article and was prompted to join the live conversation with Joe Klein. Uh, no thanks, I will ruin my beautiful brain in other ways, thank you very much. Uggh.

      And the article was very underwhelming. I thought there would be more there. A simple hit piece. The tone is not quite as underhanded as it would have been even just 3 years ago, but all the elements are there, as you note.

      I wonder why the article doesn’t discuss single payer health care. Jill Stein being a Dr. I would think this would be the one issue she could hammer away at. And the author of that silly article is probably aware that the American people do support single payer health care and that her “radical” message is both practical and popular.

      It’s a lame hit piece. Maybe this is a *good thing* for third parties in that the attack seems incredibly weak and lame. But it’s still only lame propaganda like this in the mainstream media.

  11. financial matters

    JPMorgan Counterparty Platt Says Bank’s Loss May Widen Bloomberg

    From a comment to the above article.. Difficult to make sound investment decisions in this sort of environment. But fertile ground for insider trading..

    “”JPM has $2.8 trillion in off-balance items such as derivatives. It also has $118 billion in level III assets. These are assets that cannot be verified in the marketplace because they don’t trade actively. They are valued based on in-house models, historical correlations or other means. “”

  12. Organismic

    Re corporate insiders in organic standard agency;

    The best reporting on organic food and the industry.

    Big corporate ownership chart:

    Please seek out the good local guys and gals and support them before buying big corpganic.


    Here is the evil empire, better than nothing if nothing else in your town, but promote organics in local grocers and support your local farmers market.

    Country of Origin – Whole Foods Market Internal Document – Do Not Distribute”, go here:

    1. Lidia

      Thanks, Organismic. I am moving across the Atlantic to a town where I know I can get organically-raised meat and produce. It’s that important to me as a survival goal.

      Not just a survival goal for me (I can eat McDonald’s when tempted) but a survival goal for the planet. I’m sick of funnelling money into entities which are diametrically opposed to continued life on this planet.

  13. EmilianoZ

    Meet the flame retardant lobby:

    “Blood levels of certain widely used flame retardants doubled in adults every two to five years between 1970 and 2004. More recent studies show levels haven’t declined in the U.S. even though some of the chemicals have been pulled from the market. A typical American baby is born with the highest recorded concentrations of flame retardants among infants in the world.”

    “The chemical industry often points to a government study from the 1980s as proof that flame retardants save lives. But the study’s lead author, Vytenis Babrauskas, said in an interview that the industry has grossly distorted his findings and that the amount of retardants used in household furniture doesn’t work.”

    “When we’re eating organic, we’re avoiding very small amounts of pesticides,” said Arlene Blum, a California chemist who has fought to limit flame retardants in household products. “Then we sit on our couch that can contain a pound of chemicals that’s from the same family as banned pesticides like DDT.”

    1. EmilianoZ

      Yeah, I suspect Stoller doesn’t take the antidote seriously enough. Maybe he doesn’t get this essential part of NC culture.

      We, NC readers, are refined connoisseurs of animal beauty and diversity.

      1. scraping_by

        The antidote is supposed to be a counter to the grim and dismal subject of the blog.

        Does Mr. Stoller need a violent, threatening image to counter when his writing veers into concern trolling? Does this image resonate with personal history or personality? Is there an political underground that uses endangered megafauna as a sign/countersign?

        Curious, curious, curious…

  14. kevinearick

    Time Travel & Traveling Tinkerers

    In a world of digitized money and cash withdrawal limits, what does a global bank run look like? You’ve been looking at it, and it just reached the tipping point of global recognition. The spenders still can’t face their addictions and every word invested in tax rate increases results in an overall tax base decline, because all the true investors have pulled out, leaving the inflationary pension ponzi.

    Majority pleas for equal outcomes is the path to tyranny, and war is always the result. They have been doubling down on Silicon Valley with their children’s future, rolling from one recession to the next, since its inception. Now, they are all corporate welfare recipients and distributors, requiring acceleration of free money to continue operations.

    Now that everyone can see that there is no such thing as organic corporate growth, public, private, or non-profit, and that it must come from a private sector beyond the scope of empire, can we all get on with our lives, or do we have to kill a lot of people first?

    Everything in life is a trade-off. If you want little critters in your life, you are going to have to work 5 times harder than you ever worked before to support the associated empire. Anything less, as promised by empire, comes out of wages, which it temporarily replaces with a pyramid of debt. If you cannot or will not do that, you are much better off leaving parenting to others.

    If you want equal opportunity, you must be willing to stand up to the empire alone, because the vast majority has a price. The only question is how much, which track. Look at where the protesters from the 60s are now. One, among most, which replaced the preceding establishment, is the Governor of California, his father’s son, a prisoner in the same palace, pleading for more educated criminals to feed the pensions. The protester becomes the cop in the next iteration, surprise, surprise.

    “Ideas are a dime a dozen.” That’s the mentality of the education establishment in the United States (of Europe). Education, like everything else in the empire, is certifiably controlled from the top down. The ivy league robots have obviously reached their anxiety threshold, and their internal monologue has become their external dialogue. Whether the gated communities keep the zoo animals in or out is a function of perception, adding bricks to the wall on one side while the house of cards falls on the other.

    Everything is related to everything, whether one care to recognize the opportunity cost or not. The education system purposefully presents facts, which are really peer pressure perceptions, as unrelated events, grouped into artificial subject tracks, driving the kids so far into the forest that they can only see the trees, which are not trees at all.

    Money as civilized warfare goes in the pipe and get money and spend money at any cost comes out the other end, which really isn’t money. It’s debt slavery hidden from itself, fed with jealousy within and among the resulting economic activity tracks. Governments go in debt to wage war, against their own citizens. The size of the debt measures stupidity. Is this going to affect my shopping?

    President Obama is a derivative symptom, very far downstream. Time could just as easily have placed the Obamas, or one of most couples, on that cover. Do they fairly represent the United States? Yes. Do they fairly represent America? No. You are the government, aggregated.

    Biden is no accident; he’s from the committee, and he calls himself middle class Joe. What does that tell you about how Joe the Plumber is employed? Derivative democracy is specifically designed to end in revelation. You vote with your participation in its economy, to determine when the bomb explodes, not if. Tyranny is a function of stupidity, and you voted, one way or the other. No one, or group of ones, can force you to participate in the ignorance collective, which throws the switch at threshold.

    If you begin with your body or your mind, the churn pool is the only possible outcome, but we all begin there. In short, you are as successful as others want you to be, individuals and governments alike. Age and wisdom do not necessarily appear in order. Learn from others what you can, when you can, but net to remain yourself, and the rest will take care of itself.

    Recognize the spirit in others by discarding empire noise, with a mirror of mirrors of your own. Ask for a ride by recognizing their work. You don’t need to look for them, because they are looking for you, and they see you long before you see them. Regardless of motives, the hash table is a harsh table, creation amidst destruction.

    Spirit nets intelligent trial and error with bodily error, until it is not in error. DNA is the derivative of spirit, not the other way around as the purple bloods would have you assume. Getting the building to spin around the elevator is just the beginning…what can you do for the universe that it cannot do for itself?

    Infinite choice is both the problem and the solution. Jumping the abyss requires faith, intelligent design, and bodily action, in that order. There is never a line waiting to jump. There is always a line waiting for a bridge. An empire is a temporary bridge, and its robots always plea for both choice and equal outcomes.

    Governments are incapable of keeping their word. They simply change the definitions as required, which is exactly what the US Supreme Court has done. Those who accepted future promises to sell themselves and their children short yesterday are MAD today. Something you might want to think about: government agents, representing the manufactured majority, start wars; a small group of free agents ends them, after the governments have played themselves out.

    The United States is in worse financial shape than Greece, but it possesses the reserve currency, due to obsolete nuclear power. Bullies, effeminate boys and emasculate girls, come and go with regular frequency. A man needs to make a living; a woman needs to have children. There are all kinds of economic activities for others, but without effective new family formation on the margin there is no economic activity, and no government, which is the derivative. The United States is a nation of first responders responding to their own stupidity, a bully, which is its own worst enemy, a fraud undermining trust.

    Men and women have much more important things to do than play the good and evil, divide and conquer game, in front of a mirror, with make-up and toys to hide their anxiety. Teenagers have to learn by doing, what they should have been doing at 2, WAKE THE F- UP and look forward. If they don’t, it gets ugly.

    K-12 students are demonstrably illiterate. Governments are demonstrably illegitimate. The new economy is always the fuselage, the old economy is always the fuel container, and we have ignition. Where are you?

  15. scraping_by

    Transparent falsehoods:

    Ends the abstract with

    “Finally, the Essay argues that disappointment with Obama’s promises was inevitable: structural features of the modern presidency penalize transparency politically.”

    Once again, turning a moral choice into a scientific problem, with oh so objective rationale letting Barry off the hook. Meh.

    Open government is a choice that allows democracy, participation, and connection. It’s a people’s government, it should open to the people. It’s prevents keeping us outsiders out of the debate, making sure factoids* have no challenge. And it’s letting common knowledge be the basis of the common worldview.

    Barry’s secretive for the same reason any police state is secretive. They depend on confusion to cause disunity and use the disunity as an excuse for police state tactics.

    * Original definition: something that looks like a fact, and sounds like a fact, and is used like a fact, but is not, in fact, a fact.

  16. a crude interest

    You don’t have to put on the red light
    Those days are over
    You don’t have to sell your body to the night
    You don’t have to wear that dress tonight
    Walk the streets for money
    You don’t care if it’s wrong or if it’s right

    You don’t have to put on the red light
    You don’t have to put on the red light

    We loved you since we knew you
    We wouldn’t talk down to you
    We have to tell you just how we feel
    We won’t share you with another banker
    We know our mind is made up
    So put away your makeup
    Told you once we won’t tell you again
    It’s your pay day

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