Links 6/29/12

Can a Dolphin Still Be Your ‘Friendly Neighborhood Dolphin’ If He Keeps Biting People? Gawker

10,000 singing Ode an die Freude YouTube (furzy mouse)

Why genetically engineered food is dangerous: New report by genetic engineers EarthOpenSource (martha r)

GM Soy Linked to Illnesses in Farm Pigs Institute for Science in Society (Aquifer)

SWAT team throws flashbangs, raids wrong home due to open WiFi network ars technica

Julian Assange rejects police request to surrender for breaking bail terms Guardian

Privately and publicly looking for Earth-threatening asteroids Discover Magazine. Funny how TPTB can mobilize to go after threats when it involves spending lots of money on building more stuff, rather than more immediate threats (banks, dwindling potable water, etc)

China’s capital outflow hitting yuan MacroBusiness

U.S. exempts China, Singapore from Iran sanctions AFP

EU Leaders Ease Debt-Crisis Rules On Spain In Merkel Retreat Bloomberg

Mondragon coop gets credit-wise to beat the crunch Reuters (Aquifer)

Relations with bankers stretch to breaking point Financial Times (Lee S)

Libor affair shows banking’s big conceit Gillian Tett, Financial Times

Trader messages reveal sprawl of Libor probe Financial Times

Never ask a successful society for help MacroBusiness

Insiders got advance word on ObamaCare ruling WC Varones

How Chief Justice Rube Goldberg Saved the Individual Mandate Dan Kervick

A Big Idea From Aspen: Ending Universal Suffrage CNBC

Americans Pool Together $945.23 To Counteract Corporate Money’s Influence In Politics Onion

Nearly 350 homes destroyed in Colorado CNN (John L)

Reciprocal Fear and the Castle Doctrine Laws Rajiv Sethi

Big Banks Have Become Mafia-Style Criminal Enterprises George Washington

News Flash: It is Illegal for Debt Collectors to Stalk Debtors on Facebook or Threaten to Kill Their Dogs Nathalie Martin, Credit Slips

JPMorgan to announce $5bn ‘whale’ loss Financial Times. So, did JPM get too clever in perceptions management by leaking the $9 billion, with an eye to releasing a lower number?

Three More Governance Questions for the Fed Simon Johnson, New York Times

Thomas Friedman’s New State of Grace Matt Taibbi (Aquifer). Wow, he actually had to read Friedman to write this piece.

* * *

Lambert here:

D – 72 and counting*

“If you know what life is worth you will look for yours on earth.— Bob Marley

Readers: I have cut most other sections short this evening to cover the Supreme Court’s decision on the ACA. But first, the states:

CA. Voting: “[A]n African-American voter, Elise Brown, of Victorville, California, filed a federal lawsuit, charging that top-two, as applied, violates the Voting Rights Act and also violates the First and Fourteenth Amendments.”

CO. “Government is vitally necessary to combat the flame and will be vitally necessary to deal with the aftermath. It should be interesting to see how Colorado Springs — a hotbed of anti-government sentiment — copes with that reality. My guess is by grabbing federal money and resources with both hands.” And a slideshow (JL).

DC. “I was afraid that my kids would be taken from me just because I can’t afford to live in D.C.” (DCB)

LA. Climate cleansing: “Southeast Louisiana bucked national trends and became less poor than it was a decade ago, largely because of new investment due to rebuilding efforts and because of the post-Hurricane Katrina diaspora, which forced many of the city’s poor families to find housing outside the region.”

MI. Lansing-based R activist on ObamaCare decision: “Is Armed Rebellion Now Justified?”

NM. Tinpot Tyrant watch: “Lori Teel was arrested and handcuffed at her Portales, NM home in front of her five small children. She had borrowed $36 worth of library materials not returned since 2010.”

NY. Fracking: “The list now totals 21 Marcellus or Utica drilling permit requests, all filed since NYS put out the last draft of its new drilling rules nearly a year ago, July 2011″ (keen map). Fracking: I can’t say that price will stay that low forever, but I do hope that people who want drilling to happen yesterday realize that the economics – even without disastrous side effects – are terrible at the moment. If there was ever a good time to pause the conversation and sort through whether this is a good idea in the first place, it’s now.”

OH. Nuns on the bus: “When the federal government cuts funding to programs that serve people in poverty, we see the effects in our daily work. Simply put, real people suffer. That is immoral.”

PA. Fracking: “Methane seeping up underground pathways caused concentrated plumes of gas in the air in Bradford County where the state and a natural gas drilling company are investigating the cause of stray methane bubbling in streams and water wells, according to a study released Tuesday by the Clean Air Council. The researchers were limited to surveys along public roads and on a few properties where landowners gave them permission to take air samples and so could not track the precise emissions points for the gas.” Note “researchers were limited.” Fracking: As Gov. Tom Corbett and legislators worked frantically to lure Shell Oil Co. to build a $3.2 billion ethylene processing plant in Western PA, they forgot one of the players. “We weren’t part of the process,” said Rebecca Matsco, one of Potter’s three township supervisors. And the township could, if it chose to, stop the process of bringing Shell to the state.” Fracking: “The state House of Representatives approved a measure Tuesday that could expand drilling on state-owned lands, including on the campuses of the State System of Higher Education colleges.” Corruption: “A Dauphin County jury found former Rep. Stephen Stetler, D-York, guilty on six felony counts stemming from his participation in a scheme to use public employees to do illegal campaign work.”

TX. ’30s drought cartoons.

VA. “Virginia is a major beneficiary of the recent unprecedented level of government spending. Yet, even with that, the state [ranked #40] is incapable of achieving even average GDP growth.”

WI. Corruption: “The politicization of the DNR is off the charts – – literally – – as Wisconsin is now open for air pollution less publicized. One of two notification systems – – the “watch,” akin to weather “watches” that precede storm warnings, is being ended, says the agency in an email – – so if you have asthma, for example, you won’t know the air conditions are favorable to constrict your breathing until you are already on your way to your desination.” Class and the recall: “A group of loggers, most of whom were self-employed, believed that while schoolteachers may work hard during the year, they have cushy positions. Among the perks: great benefits, health care, summers off and an annual salary of about $50,000 a year. ‘Nobody in this town makes anywhere near $50,000,’ says Walsh, paraphrasing comments she heard. ‘At the lumber mill, they’re making $20,000 and losing their fingers!'” In other words, in a small, poor, rural town, teachers can be the rich.

Policy. TSA’s Credential Authentication Technology boondoggle, Kelly Hoggan: “There’s some issues with name matches, presentation with names, some issues as relates to IDs. These are all little things [!!] we’re looking at.” Role of government: “Cheerleaders for the death of the Postal Service also forget that the Constitution of the United States explicitly empowers Congress ‘To establish Post Offices and post Roads.’ That’s from Article I, Section 8.”

The economy. Zeitgeist watch: “The storage business has grown ten-fold in the last decade, and now generates almost $25 billion a year. These storage units are almost entirely filled with the possessions of formerly middle class people who’ve been kicked out of their houses after defaulting on their mortgages. They put their possessions into storage so they can retrieve them once they “get back on their feet.” What often happens, though, is that they simply stop making payments and the storage company auctions the contents off. ” Fracking, fun fact: “Natural gas production from shale was just shy of a trillion cubic feet in 2006. Last year, it swelled to 7.19 trillion cubic feet, a 600% increase.” With no coverage.

Media Critique. Buzzfeed: “How does this one site come up with so many simple ideas that people want to spread far and wide? What’s their secret?” Repackaging Reddit. Often without attribution.

HCR/ObamaCare decision. The good: “To [the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome] community of the lost, this cohort of hopelessness, Obamacare is a blessing; a small blessing but one that may grow in time when a cure is found, or at least when a therapy which relieves the suffering is developed.” The Buddha would approve.

Tale of the tape: 10:07AM, decision is released (SCOTUSblog). Fundraising emails, time of arrival: MoveOn: 11:18AM; FireDogLake: 3:13PM; Daily Kos: 4:05PM; Democracy for America: 5:21PM; DNCon: 5:34PM (does not mention decision!); Elizabeth Warren: 8:51PM; Romney: 10:35PM. [Note to Mitt: Must do better!]

Summary, SCOTUSblog, three main policy-affecting issues: “Although the Chief Justice [#1] rejected the government’s Commerce Clause argument, he agreed with one of the government’s alternative arguments: [#2, “Taxing Power”] the mandate imposes a tax on people who do not buy health insurance, and that tax is something that Congress can impose using its constitutional taxing power. He acknowledged that the mandate (and its accompanying penalty) is primarily intended to get people to buy insurance, rather than to raise money, but it is, he explained, still a tax. If someone who does not want to buy health insurance is willing to pay the tax, that’s the end of the matter…. [On #3, “Medicaid Coercion”] even if [the Federal Government] can’t take away all of the funding for states that don’t comply with the new eligibility requirements [as the ACA contemplated], it can still withhold the new Medicaid funds if states don’t comply. So although the Obama Administration lost on this issue, it’s probably a loss that it is willing to live with for now, as few states (if any) are ultimately expected to turn down the new Medicaid money, even with the strings.” But see below. (See also SCOTUSblog’s excellent “Reader’s Guide.”)

#1, Commerce Clause: “Charles Fried, a constitutional law professor at Harvard: ‘The limitation of the commerce clause runs counter to 75 years of Supreme Court jurisprudence. It is a complete capitulation to the bogus logic of the broccoli argument and its proponents in the Tea Party.'”

#2, Taxing Power. Obama D, 2009: The mandate is “absolutely not a tax increase.” Mitch McConnell R, 2012: “The president of the United States himself promised up and down that this bill was not a tax. This was one of the D’s top selling points, because they knew it would never have passed if they said it was a tax. Well, the Supreme Court has spoken. This law is a tax. The bill was sold to the American people on a deception.” McConnell is right, but will that help him? Neal Katyal, a former Obama acting solicitor general: “The chief justice looked at the Affordable Care Act and said, if it walks like a tax, sounds like a tax, and quacks like a tax, it is a tax.” Timothy Jost: The decision “does not make failure to purchase insurance illegal, it merely imposes a tax on the failure to do so.” Plum line: “They can’t make you eat broccoli, but they can tax you for not eating it.” Robert Reich: “By this bizarre logic, the federal government can pass all sorts of unconstitutional laws — requiring people to sell themselves into slavery, for example — as long as the penalty for failing to do so is considered to be a tax.” Reich say that like it’s a bad thing!

#3, Medicaid Coercion. Roberts, from the opinion: “Congress may not simply conscript state agencies into the national bureaucratic army [!!] and that is what it is attempting to do with the Medicaid expansion.” Guardian: “The Medicaid expansion would have offered health insurance coverage to 16 million people. Now states apparently can make up their own minds whether or not to accept the expansion — and that means if FL, TX and other big states knock it back, then there will be millions of Americans who will miss out on the benefits of the healthcare [sic] reforms.” (No. Health insurance is not health care.) David Kopel, Cato: “Today (and from now on!), states do not need to provide Medicaid to able-bodied childless adults.” WI, Bobby Peterson, ABC for Health: “The state could go its merry way and have all those people remain uninsured.”

Above, SCOTUSblog writes that “few states (if any) are ultimately expected to turn down the new Medicaid money.” Maybe. OH: State Rs “have already risked OH’s receipt of federal funds as part of the (failed) effort to defund Planned Parenthood.” WI: “[W]ill turn down $37 million from the federal government that had been awarded to help implement health care exchanges … Walker said Wednesday.” “Walker said the state will not move forward on implementing the law until after the November elections to gauge the likelihood the law will be repealed.” TN, newspaper coverage: “A nod toward states rights within the U.S. Supreme Court’s health care decision Thursday raises the possibility that TN’s state government may not need multiple millions of dollars stashed away in the state budget to cover potential costs of implementing the federal health care law.”

If a state doesn’t expand Medicaid, would the poor be forced to pay a tax penalty to the federal government for not having insurance?

Politics and optics: Nate Silver: “Obama got the good headline here, and that is likely to be most of what the public reacts to.” Nancy Pelosi called Vicki Kennedy following SCOTUS ruling and said “Now, Teddy can rest.” (Pelosi, in shocker, is lying: Kennedy was a sponsor of S1218, the Senate companion to HR676, a single payer bill.) Career “progressives,” in shocker, pop own single payer boomlet. Rahm: “That Roberts, an R appointee, tipped the balance was ‘rich with irony.’” Laurence Tribe, who taught Roberts and Obama: Pleased Roberts “saved the day,” not just on ObamaCare but “perhaps [for] the court, whose place as a legal institution had begun to fall into dangerous disrepute.” Geography of the uninsured. Mostly blue states (except for CA) subsidize red states (unless the Red States reject “Medicaid Coercion”).

The conservative fever swamp: Bloggers: “I hear from our ambassador to the netherworld of the Freeperati, Tommy T, that they’re going batshit and blaming Dubya. I cannot wait for Monday.” IA, R State Senator Kent Sorenson, tweeting: “Our supreme court chose to walk and urinate on our constitutional freedoms today. It is time to control-alt-delete the judicial system.” He doesn’t mean “walk.” He means “trample.” You’re gonna have to learn your clichés. MI, R Lansing-based activist Matthew Davis in mail: “Is Armed Rebellion Now Justified?”

Media critique. AP editor deprecates online “taunting” of CNN (q.v.). Prediction is hard: “Fun fact: InTrade put “mandate will be overturned” at 73% yesterday. Another fun fact: InTrade is useless.” Meta-spin: “The president has three separate speeches prepared.”

Fast & Furious flap. “For the first time in history, the House today held a sitting AG in contempt of Congress. The final vote, 255-67, reflected the absence of scores of Democrats who walked off the floor in protest.” Funny this is blowing up, like, today. “We’ve compared the lose-lose dynamic of this vote to what happened in the aftermath of the debt ceiling vote last summer — albeit it in a much smaller and more politically limited context.” “There is a general term for collective, strategic nonvoting: a disappearing quorum.”

Green Party. “[JILL STEIN:] As a physician, I’ve seen Romneycare in action in my home state of MA. Forty percent of the people who need health coverage find that it’s still too expensive for them. And a quarter of the people who seek payments get denied by their private insurers. It has failed to control costs, and as a result they are raising co-pays and attacking public employee health plans. It’s a fiscal and administrative nightmare which has gutted public services in MA. Schemes developed by health industry lobbyists to enrich themselves will never take care of our real needs.”

Robama vs. Obomney. “Obamacare Comes Full Circle”: a gavotte between Romney and Obama. Teh bipartisan! And not a slime’s worth of difference….

Romney. 2006: “I was very pleased that the compromise between the two houses includes the personal responsibility mandate.” Bipartisan!

Obama. 2012; “[OBAMA: The mandate:] has enjoyed support from members of both parties, including the current Republican nominee for president.” Bipartisan!

* 72 days ’til the Democratic National Convention ends with land crab on the floor of the Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC. George McGovern and Europe 72…

Antidote du jour:

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  1. Dennis

    The 9 billion dollar loss was from their own internal valuations for ‘worst case’ scenario.

  2. Jim Haygood

    From Zarathustra’s MacroBusiness post on China:

    Because China is under increasing pressure of capital outflow, the selling pressure on the yuan is increasing. However, it has always been dangerous for any central bank with an existing currency peg to signal to the market that it is allowing its currency to weaken because that tends to exacerbate the problem of capital outflow.

    For how many years did we endure the tiresome din from D.C. know-nothings, led by New York’s ineducable Chuck-the-Schmuck Schumer, claiming that if China would just stop the currency manipulation, the yuan would rise? Zarathustra offers evidence that China is actually supporting the yuan at its daily fixings. A general decline in BRICs currencies, detailed in an article posted here yesterday, offered more evidence of a global phenomenon of capital migration from periphery to core.

    And woe to the ‘dirty float’ manipulators, who resist the trend! For instance, in attempting to support its peso at an unrealistically high level, Argentina is bleeding foreign exchange and dollar deposits. Instead of floating the peso (which it eventually will be forced to do), the Black Widow president Kristina Kircher has virtually shut down imports — ‘FOG IN RIO PLATA, WORLD CUT OFF,’ to paraphrase an old British headline about a Channel fog.

    Yesterday a friend in Buenos Aires was told that she had purchased the LAST imported printer cartridge in an office supply store. Bring it in next time, and we’ll send it out to be refilled, she was told. And so the threadbare Peronist regime is reduced to printing its press releases using bootleg ink cartridges. Mark Weisbrot, please take note!

    1. Jim

      Yet, over the last decade, per/capita GDP growth in Argentina has been far higher than in any other country in South America and Mexico.

      Mexico, hewing to RightWing economic policies, has grown 0.5% a year, GDP/Capita, over the last 30 years.

      Mexicans would be so lucky as to have a Peronista-type leader during that stretch.

  3. Cap'n Magic

    Reuters reporter in Greece spied on by private security firm:

    ” A private security team was hired to follow and photograph a Reuters special correspondent who has written a series of articles exposing mismanagement in Greek banks.

    Stephen Grey, who was in Athens last week for further reporting, was followed to a meeting at a building in the city on June 20.

    The unidentified watcher waited for an hour and a half until Grey emerged. He then followed Grey to the Reuters office in Syntagma Square in the city centre, where the watcher was joined by a second man who arrived on a motorbike.

    The two men kept the office under observation for more than an hour, Reuters security staff said.

    That evening, Grey held a meeting in the garden of a hotel with two people, one of whom was Tassos Telloglou, a Greek investigative journalist.

    As they were talking, a man entered the hotel, made his way to the rear and attempted to take a picture of Grey and his companions through a window. Telloglou noticed the photographer and chased him through the hotel and foyer. When Telloglou caught up with him, the man said he had been paid to track Grey.”

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I know many are angry at them Germans, but is seems the Greek 1% bankers are not racially inferior to them 1% Aryan bankers when it comes to giving it to the Greek demos.

  4. Ned Ludd

    This made me laugh out loud:

    Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) said Thursday that the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care law means progressive lawmakers won’t be pushing for a single-payer option anymore, though the concept will live on in their minds.

    Progressives are so deep in their own spin, they have become self-satire. According to Chris Hayes, the mandate is not a tax, it is just “permissible under congress’ taxing authority.”. Joan McCarter, a front page writer at Daily Kos, linked to Hayes’ tweet, and then took the absurdity one step further:

    And what’s (way, way) more, most of the federal spending for the ACA is in tax credits for middle class people to help them afford insurance. Which is actually more like a tax cut.

    Forcing people to buy insurance, then giving them a pittance to pay for it, is progressives’ idea of a tax cut. And the penalty is like wave-particle duality. It is constitutional under taxing authority while, politically, not being a tax. It all depends on how you measure it.

    Also, pay no attention to “middle-class tax time bomb” in the ACA:

    But because of the steadily rising costs of health care in the U.S., more and more plans would reach the taxation threshold each year.

    Within three years of its implementation, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the [40 percent excise] tax would apply to nearly 20 percent of all workers with employer-provided health coverage in the country, affecting some 31 million people. Within six years, according to Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation, the tax would reach a fifth of all households earning between $50,000 and $75,000 annually. Those families can hardly be considered very wealthy.

    Keep spinning progressives. If you stop, you will all fall flat on your faces.

    1. proximity1

      Fine–just don’t call that “progressive.”

      President Obama isn’t a progressive and his policies and politics aren’t either, Ned.

      Obama is the pure creature of our wealth-corrupted political system. Obama, nominally a “Democrat” in a time when that term means simply nothing at all, is “Big, Organized Money”‘s man.

      and, your assertion that,

      “Forcing people to buy insurance, then giving them a pittance to pay for it, is progressives’ idea of a tax cut. And the penalty is like wave-particle duality. It is constitutional under taxing authority while, politically, not being a tax. It all depends on how you measure it.”

      leaves unmentioned the facts that the big pharmaceutical and health-insurace companies, i.e. huge, powerful private corporate interests, designed and wrote the law that was finally adopted and signed by Obama, and, against which he–no progressive–offered not even token opposition.

      Apparently, for you, what counts is the abuse of a now-empty term, not the facts behind another scandalous episode in an unending series of scandalous political botchery.

      Don’t like the flagrant sham that passes for an alternative to real single-payer univeral health-care coverage? Fine. Fight that, then, not the abused term “progressive,” which, of course, anyone may claim to be.

      1. Jim Haygood

        It’s hilarious how the always-wrong Mainstream Media is spinning this incoherent edict as a ‘victory’ for Obama. Righto — a pyrrhic victory!

        The Supreme Court’s craven punt inadvertently has turned the upcoming election into a national referendum on Obamacare. And it’s one he’s gonna lose. Not only is the economy punk, but also the Rasmussen poll has shown that a consistent majority has favored repealing Obamacare ever since it was frog-marched into law in 2010 with desperate parliamentary strong-arming.

        Since our house happens to be next door to a polling location, I’m thinking of hanging a big banner on our fence on Election Day — “BYE BYE BARKY!”

        Ain’t workin’ on Barky’s plantation no more …

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Day 1.

            I think, mathematically, we can speak of Day 0, Day -1, Day -100, etc., kind of like AD, BC.

        1. ambrit

          Now just wait a cotton pickin minute there.. I thought that it was really Romneycare rebranded, and done so by pesky RNC operatives at that. Either way, it’s a distraction from single payer medicine. Contrary to Miz Nancys’ take on it, poor old Ted Kennedy is spinning in his grave right now. Not flip flopping mind you, spinning. The Mitt and Barry Show has flip flopping down to a crowd pleasing performance art. Which way is up? Let’s see, what part of the election cycle is it?
          “Gadzooks Barry! Where did those Whigs come from?”
          “I don’t know Mitt. Where did those Whigs come from?”
          “I’m not sure B. Let’s call up the shades of Grover and Karl and ask them!”
          “You mean Cleveland and Marx?”
          “No silly! I mean REAL political operatives!”
          Drum roll, ker-plunk!

    2. alex

      “Within three years of its implementation, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the [40 percent excise] tax would apply to nearly 20 percent of all workers with employer-provided health coverage in the country, affecting some 31 million people.”

      And it would particularly hit small businesses, as the health insurance Mafia charges them _much_ higher rates than large businesses. Gosh, any contradiction with the desire to get more small companies to offer health insurance? Anybody who thinks the excise tax will mostly hit “Cadillac plans” doesn’t know squat about health insurance plans (calling Ezra Klein …). Until two years ago I was part of a very small (4 person) engineering consulting firm, and we were paying $1750/month for family plans that were anything but Cadillac (high deductible, lousy Rx coverage, etc.).

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        alex, just so. Re “lousy Rx coverage” — all such coverage is lousy, because ever since the BigPharmaMafia muscled the Puppet in Chief, the price of drugs,”pharmaceuticals,” over-the-counter “mass market” remedies, even generic aspirin has risen EXPONENTIALLY.

        This rampant “commodity” inflation profits the Private Mafia, guts the serfs.

    3. LeonovaBalletRusse

      NL, indeed, the “Dem spin” has reached the tipping point and is verging on chaos unmanageable. “Every farthing must be paid.” (W.H. Auden)

    4. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Are you a troll, or do you really think this is what “progressives” want? DailyK is a 1% PuppetBlog in “progressive/Dem” drag.

      Consult the Oracle, Roberto Unger, for the correct definition of “progressive.”

  5. proximity1

    LINKS “2.0”

    Tomatoes were once an amazingly delicious, flavorful, fruit.

    For decades, they’ve been genetically-designed to look beautiful and that change contributed to their now lacking flavor.

    Unless you’re in your 50s or older, or you grow or buy “heirloom” tomatoes– those saved from seed-stocks that haven’t been manipulated– you probably have no idea how good a natural tomato used to taste.

    This is just one, and a relatively “minor,” example of how blind obedience to narrow market efficiencies, technology, and malignant pop-psychology interests have combined to destroy a once-marvelous natural food, now made shitty in order look uniformly “pretty.”

    Flavor Is Price of Scarlet Hue of Tomatoes, Study Finds

    NYT report based on a study reported in the review, Science : Science 29 June 2012:
    Vol. 336 no. 6089 pp. 1711-1715
    DOI: 10.1126/science.1222218

    See also (cited in the NYT report, the webpage of Prof. Harry Klee, at University of Florida, Gainesville:

    His site’s selected links on tomatoes:

    But, for too many who slavishly place all interets and values behind the so-called advance of ‘technology’–which becomes, in practice, the debasement of everything to ethically-blind, market-driven, imperatives of commercial trade, the flavor of food they’ve never known is easily dismissed.

      1. proximity1

        However that may be true, it’s hard to blame people who’ve never tasted a real natural tomato to know what they’re missing.

        What I do find blame-worthy is that so many people react reflexively in defense of a system that they resign themselves to accepting so thoughtlessly, that, upon being told that their foods have been re-engineered into bland stuff for the benefit of mass-production’s profits, they just shrug it off, either making a virtue of necessity (though it’s not a real necessity) or apparently deciding that nothing trumps the imperatives of the technology juggernaut. Those people, and that thinking, yes, I blame, since such blindness harms not only them but all of us.

        It’s an interesting question: What would happen if lots of Americans were to get a taste of a real natural tomato?

        Selected Tomato Links :

        My guess–deep, deep resentment at what they’d so long been deprived of; & maybe some change in dietary habits?

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          How about the taste of “potable water” made from “treating” BigCorp swill?

    1. SR6719


      “The extreme degradation of nourishment is a banality that, in the manner of other banalities, is generally tolerated with resignation: as a fatality, a ransom paid for progress that one knows can’t be stopped because one is overwhelmed by it everyday. Everyone keeps quiet about it.

      “It is never agreeable to admit that one has been played for a fool…”

      [By contrast]

      “…In the period that immediately preceded the Revolution of 1789, tentative and moderate efforts to falsify bread caused large-scale riots. Many bold experimenters in corrupt bread were hung from streetlamps after being made to explain their reasons for doing so…”

      [But]…the authentic world has no place in current life and will end up in a museum. The pleasures once thought to be “simple” will soon disappear and thus become the objects of scholarly museography.”

        1. SR6719

          Good one.

          I have no idea whether or not anyone will read the article I linked to, but there are a number of hidden gems, such as this part where Debord mocks tourists by comparing them to voters (and keep in mind this was written in 1985):

          “Tourism plays a certain role here. On the spot, the tourist gets used to the misery of commodities, which have been polluted just for him; he comes to consume all that has deteriorated precisely because of his presence. In effect, the tourist is treated as badly everywhere as he is at home: he is the displaced voter.”

    2. Dave of Maryland

      So where did this tomato nonsense come from?

      Back in the 1970’s, if memory serves, vine ripened tomatoes were replaced by green tomatoes that had been gassed red. Made for easier transport and longer shelf life, i.e., cheaper prices. Presumably in the years since there have been hybrids developed to work with the gas, but it’s a gas problem and what you’re getting is still green.

      You want yummy delicious tomatoes, you buy them canned, or as paste or sauce. Canners and packers only use the genuine vine-ripened stuff. This is true of all frozen and canned goods.

      Every spring, every Home Depot, Lowe’s, Ace Hardware and most big grocers, sell tomato plants. By the hundred. Put them in a fair sized container on your deck, water them daily during the heat and by the end of July you, too, will have nice tomatoes. I’ve got cherries and plums on my deck at the moment.

      And while I’m here, you want better health, here’s a slick trick.

      Get marigolds, sage and lavender plants, put them in a sunny place and let them grow. When they’re big enough for clippings, go out five minutes after SUNRISE on SUNDAY (never mind why), take clippings from each, wrap them in a paper towel, tie it up with a string and wear it around your neck. On the breast-bone. Just try it. Especially you guys with weak hearts.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Science rears her ugly head again.

        Sunrise after Sunday… Got to remember next heart.

      2. craazyman

        UR correct sir.

        I like the ones in the cans from Italy with the red and green colors and drawing of a hot Sicilian babe from the year 1893 in an abstract farm-like atmosphere.

        Very good for pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce and chili. Not so hot to slice and put on burgers. Too mushy. But thaze vary flavorfill. U kin gettam hole in supie stuff or diced and sliced saws.

        I don’t know what those things are in the supermarket. They red baseballs and they taste like sweaty styrofoam. Even the red soft ones from the greenhouse are lacking something utterly essential to the being of a tomato. They are like tomatoes you’d have if you wanted something tomatoeee to photograph but not eat.

    3. enouf

      Seems some of these links are not allowed? (possibly blacklisted? for some reason?)

      — Also, i get an “Your Comment is awaiting Moderation” notice in that last post i’m replying to here;

      Here is what i had to cut from that post, in order for that post to even get to the “awaiting moderation” area. And i’ve removed the http:// prefixes;

      ————— cut ————-

      For a recent whole bunch more in general about GMO watch/activism;

      ———— end cut ———–


    4. enouf

      Apologies — Correction about that MP3 file runtime — it’s actually;
      “42:43” (42 minutes +).



  6. JTFaraday

    re: “Can a Dolphin Still Be Your ‘Friendly Neighborhood Dolphin’ If He Keeps Biting People? Gawker”

    Hm. I don’t know. Just look at all those teeth.

    1. evodevo

      They should be glad that’s all the dolphin is doing. DON’T jump in the water with it. A sexually mature male dolphin can be quite aggressive – I seem to recall a Carl Hiassen plot involving something like that.
      Never underestimate the stupidity of the average American when it comes to wild animals:
      “Oh, look, Bobby, here feed this to the cute bear ….”

      1. JTFaraday

        Oh. Because I’ve always heard you catch more bears with honey.

        So it’s not true then? :(

  7. El Snarko

    re Taibbi:Friedman is poster ad for how money makes you stupid. And it does, just listen to Dimon, if you think he is serious.

    But this LIBOR thing. Really ?? Is nothing sacred? Where are the men of breeding and their dark suits eh? Ok forget that, how about professional pride? No ? How about a moreal compass, community service, basic humanity,? No? How about…

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      re “breeding and their dark suits” – “Snakes in Suits”/”Bred in the bone.”

  8. LeonovaBalletRusse

    Lambert, re “States can make up their own minds” about Medicaid largesse: What do you think we can expect from NeoConfederates in every State, as a re-boot of the “Southern Strategy?’ Isn’t this a huge Confederate LOOPHOLE? What does history indicate is the LIKELY outcome that will be called “unintended consequences” in some quarters?

    Lambert, will Johnny Reb marry Jim Crow in 2012 for a “Peculiar Issue” — that the “expanded” Medicaid “provision” will lead to the “export of the poor” to the more merciful States of the UnionNot?

    Is this a bug or a feature?

    1. Walter Wit Man

      Both Red and Blue states will cut. Like most things in American politics, the fighting between the Ds and the Rs will be fake and serve corporate interests.

      Here’s what “liberal” Governor Jery Brown has in store of Medicaid in California:

      “Hit with a soaring state budget shortfall of $15.7 billion – up from $9.2 billion as recently as January – Governor Brown announced proposals Monday to make $8.3 billion in painful, cross-the-board cuts that quickly elicited outcries from those affected.

      Most telling of his predicament, and his strategy, Brown admonished California voters that if they don’t pass his tax-hike initiative in November, $6 billion more will have to come out of budgets for public schools and higher education.”

      1. Walter Wit Man

        “Brown said he wants to cut Medi-Cal, California’s Medicaid program, by $1.2 billion and keep another $1.2 billion in cuts to welfare and child-care that he proposed in January.”

        1. Walter Wit Man

          From the L.A. Times:

          “Health programs

          The budget includes more than $1 billion in cuts to Medi-Cal — the insurance program for the poor — and other state health programs. The bulk of the savings, $663 million, would come from a plan to move 1.4 million low-income seniors and people with disabilities who receive benefits from both Medicare and Medi-Cal into managed care. The budget also is banking on an improving economy to lower the state’s healthcare costs. It assumes hundreds of thousands of people will go off Medi-Cal as they or family members return to work. Since 2008, Medi-Cal rolls have swelled to nearly 8 million people, up from about 6 million before the recession began. The budget also includes about $88 million in reduced reimbursements to private hospitals and nursing homes. Although the federal government has rejected most of the Brown administration’s requests to have the poor pay a share of their healthcare costs, the budget does include patient co-pays for a few services, including non-emergency visits to an emergency room and certain prescription drugs. It also calls for poor patients with AIDS to pay more for their medication. Lastly, the budget phases out the Healthy Families program for children, shifting them into Medi-Cal.”


          Okay, this is a little bit more of a description of the savings/cuts.

          1. ginnie nyc

            I got news: 15 states (including California AND New York) are participating in a federal “pilot” program to move all persons on Medicaid, or Medicare/Medicaid, into “managed care”. Except it’s not managed care, it’s HMOs. The sickest people, who naturally have to see ‘obscure’ specialists like endocrinologists and neurologists, will have to petition to see them. If rejected, they have to appeal through administrative courts. The HMOS will have, for instance, 2 neurologists per catchment.

  9. alex

    re: Thomas Friedman’s New State of Grace (Matt Taibbi)

    My first thought was that Rolling Stone should give Taibbi arduous duty pay for having to read Friedman. My second thought was just the opposite. Bashing Friedman is shooting fish in a barrel. It’s beneath Taibbi’s talent. To give him the benefit of the doubt, maybe he just had a bad cold or something and wanted to knock out an easy piece. Taibbi continues to bat 1.000, but it shouldn’t count when you’re up against a Little League pitcher.

    1. Valissa

      Shooting fish in a barrel…

      As social commentary, Part 1

      As social commentary, Part 2

      As simple political commentary

      As literate political commentary

      A different point of view

    2. craazyman

      This is amazing!

      Mr. Taibbi avers: “Americans love freaks – they love people who eat testicles or drop unexpected newborns in their sweatpants or get so awesomely obese they become fused to their chairs for years at a time, not even getting up to go to the bathroom.”

      I’m an American from Virginia and I don’t like any of that stuff. The last claim is hard to believe and I wouldn’t want to investigate its veracity. This concatenation of a ludicrous burlesque of never-ending distraction to fill the horror vacuii is a symptom of asphyxiation from nature.

      I read From Beirut to Jerusalem years ago and was impressed. Mr. Friedman would go anywhere in Lebanon and talk to anybody, even though heez un American Jew. No matter how crazy or homocidal they waz. And he somehow survived all of this. It taught me a lessson.

      If yewer enuf of a nutjob and project enough soul power, you can basically create your own reality field and bend things to your will. This is a very strange and subtle observation and it is not something science has figured out. People will be entranced by ewer consciousness vibrations and you will put them under your hypnosis. This is a law of the youniverse.

      The only problem arises when physical objects, like meteors, hit your head. If that happens, it may be you just shift vibrational realms and possess control. But even the meteors may sometimes be bent to ure universal law and strike the ground beside you. If so, it would only be amusing. It doesn’t always work though.

      I am not sure if this trait is learned or possessed. I suspect there’s a gradation.

      Mr. Friedman must be having fun with all the attention. It must be good for his book sales. Why anyone needs instruction in these issues though is another symptom.

  10. Bill the Psychologist

    Many Thanks for posting the Ode to Joy, it was magnificent, truly joyful.

    The conductor was every bit as expressive as Leonard Bernstein in his prime, and the 4 principals were excellent, among whom the Tenor was outstanding.

    All those singing and listening must have felt the sound into their bones.

    Music helps me with so many of life’s slings and arrows, it’s the true antidote to grimness, along with my two doggies.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Great music that “stirs the soul” is the MOTIVE device at the core of all religious theatre by any name.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I heard the most heavenly music today during my lunch break – birds singing, or maybe they were debating their own monetary issues, but I thought they sounded lovely.

  11. Hugh

    I found the Bloomberg article on the euro-summit confusing. The BBC had a somewhat better article.

    But the best is simply to look at the summit statement which is very short. So every word counts. Note in particular how the “flexibility” of the EFSF/ESM is heavily conditioned, that is made less flexible.

    We affirm that it is imperative to break the vicious circle between banks and sovereigns. The Commission will present Proposals on the basis of Article 127(6) for a single supervisory mechanism shortly. We ask the Council to consider these Proposals as a matter of urgency by the end of 2012. When an effective single supervisory mechanism is established, involving the ECB, for banks in the euro area the ESM could, following a regular decision, have the possibility to recapitalize banks directly. This would rely on appropriate conditionality, including compliance with state aid rules, which should be institutionspecific, sector-specific or economy-wide and would be formalised in a Memorandum of Understanding. The Eurogroup will examine the situation of the Irish financial sector with the view of further improving the sustainability of the well performing adjustment programme. Similar cases will be treated equally.

    • We urge the rapid conclusion of the Memorandum of Understanding attached to the financial support to Spain for recapitalisation of its banking sector. We reaffirm that the financial assistance will be provided by the EFSF until the ESM becomes available, and that it will then be transferred to the ESM, without gaining seniority status.

    • We affirm our strong commitment to do what is necessary to ensure the financial stability of the euro area, in particular by using the existing EFSF/ESM instruments in a flexible and efficient manner in order to stabilise markets for Member States respecting their Country Specific Recommendations and their other commitments including their respective timelines, under the European Semester, the Stability and Growth Pact and the Macroeconomic Imbalances Procedure. These conditions should be reflected in a Memorandum of Understanding. We welcome that the ECB has agreed to serve as an agent to EFSF/ESM in conducting market operations in an effective and efficient manner.

    • We task the Eurogroup to implement these decisions by 9 July 2012.

  12. LeonovaBalletRusse

    NPR News at 11 AME: Colorado asks for Federal help! Huh? Will the Governor of Colorado be required to sign a statement saying that the citizens of Colorado have been fools to try to “shrink Government” in the past, and that they now admit this is a “Bad Idea?” Will Colorado dismantle its Neoconlib Anti-Government Propaganda Machine in exchange for “Federal help” out of this “Colorado Citizens” crisis? Will Colorado, in sum, change its tune?

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Can we give grades to election results?

      That was a B and this is a D. Can an election result be said to be wrong or incorrect?

      Do ‘winners’ of an incorrect election need to apologize?

  13. LeonovaBalletRusse

    re Antidote du jour: If you look hard into the dog’s face, you see obedience in distress, restrained tears in the eyes. Is he “begging” for a treat from a “handler?”

    1. craazyman

      That’s very ornate. Could be true.

      But it might be a simple case of rapt concentration on the question: “Is that a bacon smell coming from the kitchen?”

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      The green way of living means local, fresh produce and fruits, not something shipped from thousands of miles away.

      I assume the antidote is from Patagonia or some such locale. That’s not green. If the antidote was from here but 6 months ago, it cant be that fresh.

      Let’s use local, fresh antidotes, please.

  14. JTFaraday

    “Laurence Tribe, who taught Roberts and Obama: Pleased Roberts “saved the day,” not just on ObamaCare but “perhaps [for] the court, whose place as a legal institution had begun to fall into dangerous disrepute.””

    Interesting how both Tribe and Robert Reich are promoting the framework that the Court is suffering from disrepute due to its alleged partisanship and not its corporatism.

    What is it going to take to shift these alleged intellectuals into a more accurate framing of contemporary reality?

    1. SR6719

      I’m not sure but hanging them from streetlamps might work.

      At least according to Samuel Johnson: “When a man knows he is to be hanged…it concentrates his mind wonderfully.”

    2. Ms G

      Harvard pays veddy veddy well. As do free-lance gigs writing 1st Amendment briefs on behalf of the free speech and personhood rights of corporations represented by certain white-shoe law firms.

      Short answer: nevah.

  15. Eureka Springs

    Thanks for the Dr. Jill Stein link. A breath of fresh air from a Green in an otherwise D vs R nosh pit…

    Now easier and even more imperative that as many as possible abandon the two corrupt parties.

  16. Geoffrey Nicoletti

    Yves, please read…

    Even if we had no laissez-faire at a national level, we have laissez-faire internationally…it is like my sister saying go to bed at 8 p.m. and my parents come along and say go to bed when you want. The real bankers today are PARENTS (like me)paying their married children’s bills because they are working full-time and CAN”T. Do an article…do the research…how many fifty and sixty years olds are keeping their married children off the streets? Our level of international trade requires a world government to REGULATE it, or (not wanting that) a highly reduced level of international trade so that Greece or Spain can’t hurt us. And the capitalists don’t want that.
    (Even the MAFIA doesn’t blow up the neighborhood when taking out the individual they are after). So why am I paying my son’s bills when he is working full time? I really feel it is alot like Russia in 1905…

  17. LeonovaBalletRusse

    re “Crown dependencies: the Loophole Islands” in the Guardian: These islands are but “Crown Colonies” on the Victorian Reich 18th century Financial Lebensraum model.

    Truly, what on earth would the “British Empire” be without its current colonies for exploitation by the .01% Victorian Reich DNA Monopoly via tax-avoidance “Finance” regimes from island to island, while stripping We the People of the U.S. through their .99% Agents in “banking” and “government?” Is our nation-state but one more “island” on which “the Victorian Sun never sets?”

    Did the American Revolution never happen? Institutionalized “tax-havens” are at the very heart of Organized Crime by “Banker” Agents of the Global .01% and their .99% Agents running their gravy train.

    if any leader in the U.S. is serious about our getting out from under The Iron Heel of Imperial Europe (esp. of intercontinental Victorian Reich DNA), we should SLAM the door to tax evasion/avoidance via UK/EU “tax havens” immediately, and JAIL whatever tax dodger fails to cooperate with this program to bring our nation-state to financial ORDER.

    The Supranational Global State experiment has failed. Beyond the nation-state is the tipping point into chaos, for beyond the nation-state no coherent management of any Real Economy is possible. The best that the Land Lords of the World can hope for is the networking of nation-states in an ever-evolving status of fluid cooperation, in a world where nation-state tax evasion and/or “tax arbitrage” is FORBIDDEN, i.e., MADE IMPOSSIBLE through fundamental cooperation, at both nation-state and Global levels.

    As has been demonstrated: You cannot eat your cake and have it also. We cannot let the 1% devour the world and hope to have a world remain.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Moreover, IF America recalls the Spirit of 1776, and DARES to oppose the asset-stripping of nation-states through the contemptible “offshoring” Organized Crime Subsets of “The British Empire”–the Victorian Holy Roman Reich, the Global “Nobility” .01%–by LEADING the world in the Universal Real Economic Reform suggested above, THEN the whole world will rejoice that “Leviathan” has lost its grip on us, and will be laid very, very low for a long, long time.

      Can America come clean? What have we got to lose but our enslavement to evil?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Cap’n, thanks for the … reference to excellent summary of our nation-state’s rule by the Old Plantation Elite, including the Yankee Bush Dynasty that found its heart in Old Confederate Texas. The author of the Alternet article rightly gives credit to Michael Lind, who was perhaps the first to realize what was really going on. Other writers followed in his footsteps, exposing the Bush Dynasty exploitation of Texas and its Old Confederate, Jim Crow Might Makes Right, especially because of its “Evangelical Christian” Confederate contingent. The use of these “Christians” to ramp the Elite Southern Strategy helped to realize the 1% Dream: “The South shall rise again.”

      This “Ultra-Conservative” Movement was facilitated by the M-I-Complex + Research Triangle Park + New Finance in the Carolinas; by the Yankee Dollar immigration to Atlanta’s “New South,” enhanced by its CNN center of 1% NewSouthNews (esp. glamor of Bush Wars), which compounded the commercial 1% power of Atlanta’s Coca Cola Imperialists; by growth of NewSouthNazi State of Alabama; by the continuation of Talmadge’s Georgia in M-I country; by NASA wealth in Mississippi, Florida, and Texas; by the “shock and awe” of Hurricane Katrina and the Army Corps Flood of 2005 in Louisiana and Mississippi, followed by The Shock Doctrine imposed by Blackwater for Bush tyranny in formerly Democratic New Orleans, followed by NewEducation Reform “Chicago-Style” ramped through Bobby Jindal of 1% Indian heritage in allegiance to the Pope. Add to this the Giant Pincer Movement of Bush Dynasty Domination of the Old Confederacy from bases in Texas and Florida.

      The NeoMeinKampf of Correa de Oliveira, with Foreword by Morton C. Blackwell, minister of education in Confederate Nobility Authoritarian Ultra-conservativism–entitled: “NOBILITY and Analogous Traditional Elites in the Allocutions of Pius XII: A Theme Illuminating American Social History” announced to the world the Right’s earnest intention to square the circle of “Righteous Tyranny.” This brings us back to Square One, as shown in:

      “FRUITS OF MERCHANT CAPITAL: Slavery and Bourgeois Property in the Rise and Expansion of Capitalism,” AND “THE MIND OF THE MASTER CLASS: History and Faith in the Southern Slaveholder’s World View” by Elizabeth Fox-Genovese and Eugene D. Genovese.

      This is the Global 1% Fourth Reich, “perfected” from the 18th Century unto 2012. “Global War for .01% Imperial Lebensraum via the Armed Forces of Hi-Tech “MonopolyFinance” has been won. Clausewitz expanded unto perfection.

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          My LINK above is incorrect, even in short form. Do-over:

 … Long form follows:

          Article is by Sara Robinson. The “brutal strain” continues from centuries ago (likely the same DNA greed/sadism “brutality” strains that pertained in the Fox-Genovese and Genovese books, “locally” in “THE MIND OF THE MASTER CLASS.”

          When Sara Robinson says: from Charleston, SC to New Orleans, she ignores the French Colonial Rentier Class that still profit from SUGAR; but it is true that French New Orleans Aristocrats were outgunned by NATCHEZ, MS Deep South Cotton Plantation/Factor/Broker Power. A tidbit: This power of the British Empire was brought by the Anglo-German Masonic destruction (or grave enfeeblement) of the French Masonic Order of the “Metropole”–called “L’Etoile Polaire” (a meeting-place for “L’Etoile Polaire still existed before Katrina in the “French sector” of New Orleans. Bobby Jindal represents the “American Sector” Anglo triumph over their now-servile Franco-Anglo co-conspirators in Republican Crime in New Orleans.

          1. LeonovaBalletRusse

            Moreover, “Mormon Utah” is “Southern Confederate” in every shared respect above. Exact same self-righteous justification of the Mormon Bishop Master Class: contempt for women except as help-mates and MC .01%DNA breeders to male .01% rulers of the System; contempt for Jews, contempt for African-Americans (esp. descendants of slaves); will to dominate others with keen sense of self-entitlement; sadistic, clueless in the World at Large.

          2. LeonovaBalletRusse

            So now the High Security States of Virginia and Utah book-end the Confederacy.

  18. Mike


    Please fine some alternative form to present your daily title wave of stories/links below the standard list of links. I value its content, but it’s hard on the eyes.

    Use a bold dark font to emphasize the titles to each section. Possible a thicker font.

    Maybe generate a small icon for each section (i.e a picture of the state of California, for a story about California).

  19. jsmith

    Regarding asteroids:

    Ah, yes the next stage in the play-acting of the elite to keep the world awash in militarism as purportedly predicted/disclosed by Nazi/NASA scientist Werner Van Braun on this deathbed to his long-time confidant Carol Rosin.

    According to the story, the elite will fabricate a number of scenarios by which the world will be forced to succumb to ever-increasing levels of militarization just so that the MIC can keep going.

    Those staged scenarios according to Braun are:

    1) The Cold War
    2) The War on Terrorism
    3) An asteroid hurtling towards Earth
    4) An alien invasion

    Given the absurd and laughable official explanations of the 9/11 attacks and the rest of the farcical War on Terror, I’m sure it won’t be long before we’ll soon be regaled with shots of an evil Terror-oid(trademark) itching to crash into our planet.

    And to think that “leftish” people everywhere were recently laughing how stupid those Conservatives were for still believing in the Iraqi WMDs, huh?

    It sure seems to me there are many risible beliefs even among the savviest of today’s “leftists”.

    Hit it with the mantra, boys!!!

    19 hijackers….

      1. F. Beard

        I heard that V2’s hit so fast that the detonator did not have time to work before the explosives were scattered. A bit of von Braun or other German scientist sabotage?

      2. Cap'n Magic

        Ah-Another Tom Lehrer fan. Maybe someone should re-purpose ‘New Math’ to represent today’s high-finance-or the MLF Lullabye for the Eurozone.

          1. Cap'n Magic

            It would be rather interesting to see what he would come up with these days-I remember that he wasn’t all that keen on Kennedy’s Moon landing mandate (“…put some clown on the moon”).

            Since I still have that on vinyl (!) I’ll give it a spin and see if I can’t come up with a suitably poor re-purposing.

          2. Cap'n Magic

            I know how I’d end a the “new Math” parody…

            “Next time we’ll talk about–derivatives!”

      3. Ms G

        Ok, now you are definitely a fellow traveler. An hour ago I was musing: Where is Tom Lehrer today? I’m sure he is not fiddling with a rosary, but is he still living around Santa Cruz?

        Wikipedia has a nice quote. “Lehrer has said of his musical career, “If, after hearing my songs, just one human being is inspired to say something nasty to a friend, or perhaps to strike a loved one, it will all have been worth the while.” ”

        We could substitute “friend” or “loved one” with former brothers and sisters of the DNC persuasion. :(

        1. Cap'n Magic

          And here’s the ultimate kicker-I was introduced to that subversive Prof. Lehrer by my geometry teacher in high school! (raises Guiness in a toast to public education)

        1. Cap'n Magic

          I know his first album cold-the original 10″ release on Lehrer Records – which I had. Where it went to is a mystery to this day.

          1. Ms G

            All now available on CDs. I was a latecomer to the great TL and quickly stocked up (hoarded?) everything I could find.

    1. jsmith

      A quick review of Operation Paperclip – by which Braun and other Nazi scientists became employed in the U.S. – might also be in order, just to warm any patriotic American hearts as we approach the 4th.

      “To circumvent President Truman’s anti-Nazi order, and the Allied Potsdam and Yalta agreements, the JIOA worked independently to create false employment and political biographies for the scientists. The JIOA also expunged from the public record the scientists’ Nazi Party memberships and régime affiliations.

      Throughout its operations to 1990, Operation Paperclip imported 1,600 men, as part of the intellectual reparations owed to the US and the UK, some $10 billion in patents and industrial processes.[16][20]”

      But just like the government’s employment of Mafia hitmen and the banks laundering of drug cartel money, it’s all just bidness, right?

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        jsmith, like I said: seamless transition of Third to Fourth Reich in the Homeland.

        E.g.: Confederate Nobility ALABAMA — Mobile’s von Mises Institute, Huntsville’s Space Program (von Braun et al.), Greater Birmingham’s GermanAuto and BigHealth (esp. tailored to BigAthletics) — quite happy to join the Reich in America.

  20. K Ackermann

    Someday, I hope videos and TV include metadata specifying field of view, distance markers, etc. for each frame.

    Watching Jon Stuart interview Marco Rubio, I realized with that metadata, I could write a special effect that would allow me to choke Rubio until his face turns black. No matter which way the camera aimed, I could still see his tongue pop out.

    A couch that pulls a couple of g’s is another thing I’d like to make.

  21. Brent Musburger, Jr (news anchor)

    Breaking News! This Just In!

    The Schneiderman Mortgage Task Force will be hosting a Mary Kay Makeover Party this coming Saturday in an effort to raise funds for office space in a 25 sq ft Jack Rabbit self-storage unit, in Portsmouth, Virginia, only a 200 mile commute from DC.

    Eric Schneiderman (named by American Prospect as the man the bankers fear most) said that if the Makeover Party is successful, the task force might have an office by next week, and from there, as soon as he hires a staff, they might start to indict banking executives.

    Story developing…

    1. Valissa

      Well played Brent!

      Ya know, I thought it would be easy to find Mary Kay cartoons… so instead, here are some snarky political cartoons that I found that have nothing at all to do with Mary Kay (not sure why the search engine included them, but I enjoyed the serendipity) …

      I’ll catch you next time

      Hard won wisdom

      Family dinner chat

      Just say no

      1. Brent Musburger, Jr (news anchor)

        Thanks for the cartoons, the frog is my favorite.

        And I looked, er, I mean, I had my staff look, for a humorous 30-sec Mary Kay makeover video to go with the news release, but they couldn’t find one.

    1. F. Beard

      Steve Keen says giving money to the banks is “1/3 as effective as just giving it to the population.”

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Is “universal” not universal?

        I hope “universal” means some are excluded, like bankers.

        1. F. Beard

          Follow the math if you can:

          Assume A has $10,000,000.
          Assume B has $1,000.

          A/B = 10,000 to 1.

          Now give both A and B $100,000 (a universal bailout).

          A now has $10,100,000.
          B now has $101,000.

          A/B now is only 100 to 1.

          And the beauty is that A can’t complain since he received and equal amount!

          So away with you and your divisive tactics. As usual, you attempt to obstruct a solution.

          1. F. Beard

            Steve Keen and I are on the same page as far as a universal bailout. Where we differ is how to prevent the problem from reoccurring. Keen would limit credit creation whereas I would totally abolish it or at least remove all government privileges for credit creation.

            Banking needs to be destroyed completely, imo, or it will once again rise to threaten human existence.

          2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            No obstruction

            Only clarification

            Concrete numbers would help.

            How much will each one get? Are corporations, partnerships, municipalities included or excluded?

          3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Leonova, maybe you can lend a hand.

            If we give B $10,000,000 instead of $100,000, what is the new A/B ratio?

            Why should the 0.01% DNA retain their domination with a still overwhelming 100 to one advantage?

          4. F. Beard

            The money would be given to adult individuals only – real people – not corporations, cities or anything else.

            As for the amount, I guesstimate it would be around $500/mo initially, declining over time till all credit debt is paid off.

          5. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Why don’t we give $10,000,000 to B and nothing to A, so that A/B = 1?

            Better yet, make it $20,000,000 to B and nothing to A so that A/B = 0.5.

            Here is another question.

            Person A (not a corporation) owes $200,000.

            Person B (not a corporation) owes $15,000.

            Person C (not a corporation) owes $1,000,000.

            What should the universal bailout amount be?

            Should we aim to bailout all? Everyone gets $1,000,000?

            If so, the question becomes, what is the highest debt currently owed by an individual in America? Maybe some movie star owes $100,000,000.

          6. F. Beard

            Why don’t we give $10,000,000 to B and nothing to A, so that A/B = 1?

            Because that would not fly politically and you know it. Thus you are trying to poison pill the idea.

            Thus you are an obstructionist – as usual.

            Some people are trying to end this Depression. And you?

          7. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Let’s see.

            Anything challenging the current domination of the 0.01% DNA is divisive.

            By the way, for people a few days short of becoming adult invidividuals, they won’t qualify for the bailout? Is that correct?

          8. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            $500/month initially, declining over time…

            Will that work, as jobs continue to be outsourced and robot-sourced?

            You seem energetic. Why don’t you channel your energy to work on something more fundamental, longer lasting, like the way the world is organizied? Maybe on Homo Not-So-Sapiens Not-So-Sapiens’, sorry, some people don’t like that term, Man’s pride or arrogance? If you are religious, maybe you want to work on people’s spirituality?

          9. craazyman

            Mathematically, it’s the same thing as a wealth tax and transfer payment from the very rich to everybody else.

            I think the end result would be price inflation that offsets most of the apparent benefit of the money received. But it would probably do some good anyway.

          10. F. Beard

            I think the end result would be price inflation that offsets most of the apparent benefit of the money received. crazyperson

            That depends. If the bailout was combined with a ban on further credit creation, then it (the bailout) could be metered to just replace existing credit as it is paid off for NO CHANGE IN THE TOTAL MONEY SUPPLY (reserves + credit). Thus neither price inflation nor price deflation should be expected.

            How many times do I have to repeat this?

        2. enouf

          You asked an elusive question pertaining to “The Elect” and the “Universality” of Salvation, in another thread here (not too long ago); thought i’d try and respond ..

          The ‘universality’ and ‘saving grace’ available to ALL of us through Jesus Christ is indeed “Universal”. One just has to define to oneself what “Freewill” is. F. Beard will recall a question (from yet a different thread(?) i asked him about defining the term “Church” .. it literally means ‘Universal’, IIRC.

          ..and .. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance shows that ‘church’ and ‘churches’ is ONLY used in the New Testament), ergo Christ’s teachings of accepting the gentiles into the promise and glory of Salvation applies to all. .. all whom are willing to receive!

          Someone also asked recently some RC things, which again, i wanted to respond to, in a checklist; “a) Yes b) No” format .. but i decided not to.

          If you would like to discuss Calvin v. Luther v. Augustine … v. RC v. Morman v. … this obviously is NOT the place.

          I’m trying to say this;
          (a) All men/women ‘Sin’ (miss the mark), some/many succumb to it, nay,.. they start to lavish in it — ‘Forgiveness’ is required, yet never contemplated.
          (b) Salvation only comes through Saving Grace (the Christos, the Annointed One, the Messiah)
          (c) Dogma (Religiousity) is most detrimental to true spiritual salvation.
          (d) … i could go on a ‘l o n g’ time, but i shall refrain.


          p.s. There! i’ve added myself to the blacklist of liberal/LGBT pondscum derisiveness. Do i care?, heh, not on iota. If one is so blind, so as not to see the sheer unalderated beauty and forbearance before our own eyes (Nature), then one will never ‘free-willingly’ understand their own human (yet spiritual) limitations to effect real change, i.e., LOVE (let alone their own share of guilt/shame which requires Forgiveness — see SIN definition above).

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      N.B – connect with Mexico: Drug Cartel Money – U.S. Bank Money Laundering – Mexican “family connections” of Romney and Bush Dynasties, Romney and Morgan Stanley, etc.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        Connect scope of Mormon Missionary Global Empire, Hotels, Banks with the HUGE Security Complex in Utah. “Keepers of Secrets” par excellence.

  22. LeonovaBalletRusse

    YVES, on Bloomberg today re Wachovia et a. Money Laudering of Mexican Drug Cartel cash and deposits via an army of small grifters, please read between the lines. Do you think that MERS Racket was/is a two-fer: title and land record destruction combined with “complex” money-laundering?

  23. LeonovaBalletRusse

    To further expand NC discussion of moral issues, see Chris scathing review of Jonathan Haidt’s new book by Chris Hedges at Haidt comes off as a “born again” 1% oppressor in India, a worshiper at the altar of Football.

  24. Westcoastliberal

    Regarding the horrors of GM food, IMHO it will take a well-reported event of massive food poisoning of Humans to even begin to apply the brakes to this freight train.
    Like so many other ELEs (extinction level events) we face (Nuclear Radiation/Fukishima, Global Warming, Solar Flares/CME’s, Asteroids, Seismic, etc.) GM foods is another to add to the list, however like Nukes, this is something we Humans can do something about.

  25. Cap'n Magic

    CJR: Insufferable in Aspen:

    CNBC’s John Carney finally heard an idea that intrigued him at the Aspen Ideas Festival: Ending universal suffrage:

    His argument had two parts. The first was that some people simply are not ready for democracy. They have no functional conception of the state in their minds, much less an understanding of representative, deliberative democracy. Some are so poor that they can be bribed to vote this way or that for “five dollars,” he said. The application of the principle of universal suffrage was not a recipe for successful government in these circumstances, the speaker argued…

    This pretty much runs against the grain of everything decent and serious people think. In fact, in a place like Aspen — which is dominated by progressives of various sorts — it felt like he was standing athwart history yelling “Go back!”

    There’s something truly gross about the elite gathering in Aspen, of all places, at the behest of The Atlantic, of all institutions, to talk about how some people are too stupid to vote (a notion advanced by the Wall Street Journal editorial pages last week).

    Because what the world needs now is more power concentrated in the hands of Aspen Ideas Festival elites like Alan Greenspan, Pervez Musharraf, and Larry Summers.
    Gaah. Never trust anyone with a Ph.D.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Cap’n, “Aspen Elite” – It’s that “Blue Light” of Leni Riefenstahl’s German Romance! Research the FOUNDERS of the Aspen Festival, the Aspen Institute. “Beautiful Dreamers” abound in Colorado. The crystalline Alpine Air feeds “High Minds.”

  26. Roland

    So now they want to shift the “Overton Window” to getting rid of universal suffrage.

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