Links 12/5/12

Omaha apartment linking doo to pooches Journal Star

Cruel new fact of crustacean life: lobster cannibalism Reuters. Eat more lobster to prevent it! Seriously. Lobster prices were super low in Maine last summer.

Elisabeth Murdoch reveals family rifts over MacTaggart Lecture Telegraph

Welcome to Japan-style crisis management John Plender, Financial Times

Ex-HBOS head was ‘dishonest’ or ‘delusional Financial Times. I am eagerly awaiting transcripts.

Swiss spy agency warns U.S., Britain about huge data leak Reuters

Egyptian forces clash with anti-Morsi protesters Guardian

Bradley Manning lawyer: soldier’s treatment a blemish on nation’s history Guardian

US Energy Independence: Let’s not get too Carried Away Oil Price

Congress Arrested On Manslaughter Charges Onion (Valissa)

Catfood watch:

Three-Card Budget Monte Paul Krugman

Republican “fiscal cliff” proposal Linda Beale

Republicans in capital gains tax fight Financial Times

In Tax Fight, G.O.P. Seeks a Position to Fall Back On New York Times

Matt Stoller on Talk Action News. Starts out on the Walmart strike, but gets to the Great Betrayal. Starts at 52 mins here, continues at the top of the hour here.

Unionizing the Bottom of the Pay Scale New York Times

Zombie Apocalypse Singled Out In Tom Coburn Report On Homeland Security Waste Huffington Post

Undercover Videos Are Fine, Except When They’re About Animal Abuse. Then They’re Terrorism. Leighton Woodhouse, Firedoglake. Depressing.

After Sandy, NYC pins housing hope on repairs Associated Press. Better headline: Bloomberg flounders, but it’s poor people, so who cares?

The homeless man and the NYPD cop’s boots: how a warm tale turns cold Guardian

It’s not profit that is destroying our health; it’s the private insurance business model healthcareforall, Firedoglake

Paul Krugman Will Like These Figures Cullen Roche

Goldman cuts US Q4 GDP forecast to 1% (annualized) Walter Kurtz

The Affordable Housing Crisis New York Times. Editorial.

The Recession’s Toll: How Middle Class Wealth Collapsed to a 40-Year Low Atlantic (Carol B)

It’s A Sad Comment On The State Of America That Words Like ‘Fair’ And ‘Share’ Are Now Insults Henry Blodget, Clusterstock. Good for Blodget.

Lincoln Against the Radicals Jacobin. This is a great piece. BTW I saw the movie without knowing of its propaganda message (and you’d never connect this Lincoln fable with Obama’s tactics unless you’d been primed to make the link). While the acting is terrific (I particularly liked Sally Fields and Tommy Lee Jones), I was so taken aback by the utterly implausible opening scene was that I didn’t trust the movie at all.

Antidote du jour (furzy mouse):

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  1. JTFaraday

    re: It’s A Sad Comment On The State Of America That Words Like ‘Fair’ And ‘Share’ Are Now Insults Henry Blodget, Clusterstock. Good for Blodget.

    Yes, good for him. But, I also feel like I’ve read this article about a thousand times already.

    Is it the case that articles like this one–similar in content to the one at “Reformed Broker” the other day, although he also asserted that “fairness” is not the way the world works using “attractiveness” as an example– are now appearing in new, perhaps more “mainstream” publication outlets where new audiences might read them -OR- are the already converted mostly just preaching to each other?

    This is a real question, not mere snark.

      1. dearieme

        I know that the received account of American history is largely malarkey, but the business about Ford paying enough to let his employees buy the cars they made must be one of the malarkiest bits of all.

        1. JTFaraday

          Well, I don’t know the real truth status of that factoid, but via google I did discover this article at the Telegraph (UK) promoting the idea that it is a “lefty myth” and which proposes to disabuse us of the myth in order to dismiss living wage campaigns.

          “No, he didn’t simply raise wages. He made sure that he was paying more than everyone else. That was the point, to make those who had jobs at Ford more loyal, to have lower staff turnover, to enable him to pick and choose and get the cream of the crop. It’s entirely likely that his total labour costs went down even as he was paying each individual worker more.

          This is the effect that those paying the Living Wage are reporting. Because they are indeed paying more for their cleaning contractors (or whatever) than other people are, they’re gaining the loyalty of those cleaning staff. Less turnover, less training needed – all is as Ford found it to be. I’m all in favour of employers doing this if that’s what they want to do. However, as Paul Krugman has pointed out, there’s a problem with trying to extend this to all employers, as the LW campaigners desire.

          If everyone’s now paying the higher wage, then no one is paying higher wages than anyone else. So that effect in terms of loyalty, of lower training costs, lower staff turnover and recruitment costs, disappears. That’s because the effect depends not upon higher wages, but higher wages than others. If everyone is paying higher wages, the whole point of the exercise disappears up its own fundament.”

          If that kind of truth telling is more your cuppa tea, google only takes a minute of your time.

      2. Aquifer

        Good article until he gets to: “And now they’re doddering about in abject ignorance over why everyone turned on them this election cycle -”

        Ha, that’s the problem, that’s why the stupidity will continue – nobody (except 1.5%) “turned on them in this election cycle” ….

        Does this dude actually think voting Dem was “turning on them”???

        1. bob

          He’s the quintisential ‘merican. He defines words with his guts. His all american gut didn’t like that “fair” word, and he had to go through a very violent bout of verbal diarrhea to get over it. In the process, he redefined ‘fair’ as stupid.

          Something just didn’t smell right to him…

          1. JTFaraday

            I didn’t reread the “Reformed Broker” article this morning, but if I remember it correctly, he redefined “unfair” as “stupid.”

            ie., the point isn’t that it’s “unfair” that US employees aren’t getting raises and benefitting from increased profits and that corporate executives aren’t reinvesting in their businesses, rather it’s just “stupid.”

            I wasn’t in love with his spiel on “fairness” but I think his larger point is a fair one.

          2. bob

            Exactly, it was nothing new, just new words and meaning. He’s merican and no one is going to tell him what his words mean.

            What’s worse- being unfair as a nation or being stupid as a nation? His vote is for number two, fuck mens rea. How do you fix stupid? By his own ‘logic’, he falls into the second camp.

            Have it your way™

          3. JTFaraday

            “Redefining” unfairness as stupidity is the poiltical and educational essence of the strike tactic, for example. We see this in the recent “supply chain justice” actions at Walmart.

            I will grant this does not address all of a society’s unfairnesses, just as some employees within the chain have more deployable power than others and are important to buy off.

            In this case, in order to produce broader justice, some broader concept of “fairness” needs to kick in that produces a sense of solidarity in those who can deploy more power within the chain with those who have less.

            So, his preference has some limitations, but it’s not dogsh*t either. Particularly when faced with a wall of sound dictating that “fairness isn’t the point,” demonstrating that what’s “unfair” is ALSO “stupid” may be the only tool available to move the process forward.

            At the end of the day, it could be they’re “still stupid” but like he says, life isn’t necessarily fair.

            “He’s merican and no one is going to tell him what his words mean.”

            Well, I’m A-merican and from time to time people can’t tell me what words mean either. ;)

          4. bob

            This is turning into keyboard masterbation.

            He’s a fascist. It’s that simple. If it were up to him, fair and it’s counterpart “justice” would simply go away (proudly, “his kids can’t use the word”), giving room for smarts, intelligence and therefore prosperity to roll through town.

            Throw that all away and let’s “hope” that stupid fixes itself.

            Stupid indeed.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I believe the society, or at least the government, should be like a household and in my household, it’s about fairness – whatever I eat, my cat believes she should be able to eat it too and whatever room I go into, should I close the door, she insists that it be opened immediately.

      Fair and share – in a household and by the government.

      1. Aquifer

        Hmmm – I don’t know that i would want the gov’t to keep it’s bathroom door open – it seems that is carrying the open door policy a bit too far … a webcam, maybe …

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          I think that’s the way the Romans had it – no partitions, so as to encourage, eh, bonding, I guess.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            It’s all a matter of conditi…, sorry, education.

            Young Roman kids brought up the right way weren’t expected to have any problems at all.

      2. JTFaraday

        Yeah. This morning I was scheduled to babysit my 20mo niece, and she only wanted mommy and daddy. When it was time for me to go home, she only wanted me.

        Clearly, we should have asked her what her schedule looked like instead of going completly over her head like that, LOL.

        Fair is fair.

  2. wunsacon

    >> Bradley Manning lawyer: soldier’s treatment a blemish on nation’s history Guardian

    What if there are enough blemishes that it is simply our complexion?

  3. JB <— and everyone questions why some are so resistant to raising taxes? I personally don't believe taxes should be raised until waste is nearly-fully controlled. Hiking taxes will only magnify the waste this very story details. Yes, I believe that there are those that don't want taxes increased for their own selfish reasons. I personally am against it because I watch every dollar and am calculated when it comes to spending each dollar I have earned. To take what I've earned and send it to a place that is not calculated is extremely difficult to endure.

    1. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©

      Lest we forget:

      You know, Paul, Reagan proved that deficits don’t matter. We won the mid-term elections, this is our due.

      – Dick Cheney, re: The Bush-Cheney tax cuts

      Those tax cuts had to sunset in 8 years originally, because they were passed via reconciliation and they raised the deficit.

      But now we’re supposed to cut Medicare and Social Security, because people who have always wanted to cut those things suddenly claim to care very much indeed about the debt?


    1. Butch in Waukegan

      But . . . but, this story proves we are a compassionate and caring society. Or not.

      Arthur Silber: The Vicious Lie of Isolated Good Deeds

      Perhaps Officer DePrimo is a decent man, but we have no way of knowing based on the information publicly available. Whatever his virtue as an individual, that virtue is not automatically transferred to the NYPD, about which we know many extremely negative facts. As for what this story means about “us” in general, and about our society at this moment in time — well, it appears to me that we’re not so wonderful and compassionate after all.

        1. Aquifer

          Sure you can – in fact the best boosters of the market state are those wonderful gift giving times of the year …

  4. diptherio

    re: Zombie Apocalypse Training: more proof that they’re developing the zombie virus right now. I’ve known it for years. They are preparing to release their deadly disease on the 21st of December, that way everyone will blame the Mayans. Who are they? Oh, I think you know who they are…

    Be Prepared:

  5. jsmith

    Regarding Lincoln:

    Most Americans would be shocked to learn that old honest Abe – that commie pinko – actually fraternized with early socialists who had come to America before and after the failed revolution of 1848 in Germany.

    John Nichol’s book “The S Word” highlights some of these disturbing facts.

    Here’s an article by Nichols:

    Long before 1848, German radicals had begun to arrive in Illinois, where they quickly entered into the legal and political circles in which Lincoln traveled. One of them, Gustav Korner, was a student revolutionary at the University of Munich who had been imprisoned by German authorities in the early 1830s for organizing illegal demonstrations. After his release, Korner returned to his hometown of Frankfurt am Main where, according to historian Raymond Lohne, “he was one of about fifty conspirators involved in an attack upon the two main city guardhouses and the arsenal at the police facility and jail. This admixture of students and soldiers had planned to seize cannon, muskets, and ammunition; free political prisoners accused of breaking press-censorship laws, and begin ringing the great Sturmglocke (storm bell) of the Dom, the signal for the people to come in from the countryside. At that point, the democratic revolution would be announced…. Unfortunately, they were walking into a trap…. Betrayed by both a spy in their midst, and the reluctance of the common people to rise, nine students were killed, twenty-four were seriously wounded, and by August 3, 1833, Gustav Körner found himself riding into downtown Belleville, Illinois.”

    Within a decade, Korner would pass the Illinois bar, win election to the legislature and be appointed to the state Supreme Court. Korner and Lincoln formed an alliance that would become so close that the student revolutionary from Frankfurt would eventually be one of seven personal delegates-at-large named by Lincoln to serve at the critical Republican State Convention in May 1860, which propelled the Springfield lawyer into that year’s presidential race. Through Korner, Lincoln met and befriended many of the German radicals who, after the failure of the 1848 revolution, fled to Illinois and neighboring Wisconsin. Along with Korner on Lincoln’s list of personal delegates-at-large to the 1860 convention was Friedrich Karl Franz Hecker, a lawyer from Mannheim who had served as a liberal legislator in the lower chamber of the Baden State Assembly before leading an April 1848 uprising in the region—an uprising cheered on by the newspaper Marx briefly edited during that turbulent period, Neue Rheinische Zeitung—Organ der Demokratie.

    Are you saying, Spielberg didn’t mention all this?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      jsmith, some Koerners ended up in New Orleans, down the Mississippi from Illinois. Tough customers, with a veneer of gentility.

    2. Beppo

      It’s interesting how strong an undercurrent of socialism there was in America. And I think you could argue that America ended up with a sort of bosses socialism with all of the structure and planning, but with the profits going to the top. Even now big banks could be metaphorical planned government money product factories. Hahaha

    3. RanDomino

      A marvelous example of what happens when people try for radical change through electoral politics- their efforts are perverted, their successors are corrupt, and if they’re lucky they’re merely shot.

  6. Ed

    I thought Lincoln was a good movie, but would have been a better movie without the opening scene. There were enough clues in the rest of the movie that there was a civil war ongoing that the opening scene was not needed, and it felt like tacked on footage from another movie.

  7. ambrit

    What’s this about Elizabeth Warren getting on the Senate Banking Committee? If true, will she have any real power? Plus, what deals has she had to make to get there in the first place? Looks like we’re going to get the true measure of the woman sooner than we imagined.

    1. Lambert Strether

      Two tests for Elizabeth Warren:

      1. Pecora Commission

      2. Bankster CEOs to jail for accounting control fraud.

      It’s really not about more readable mortage forms with less fine print, Professor Warren!!

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          4. Separation of powers: Economics ≠ Politics. Separation of powers is the sine qua non of balanced government, Q.E.D.

        2. Hypothetical_Taxpayer

          4) Not having to use Google Maps to look for “fine print” in Wall Street “securitized” products.

          1. Aquifer

            Never fear – the “fine” print will now get bigger – after all why bother to hide it any more …

  8. ambrit

    My quote of the day, from Aleph Blog: “I say to all who hear me: Avoid promoted stocks. Buy only what you have analyzed.”
    If only people would apply this to politics.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        After ’00-’01, I haven’t had much to lose. That is not to say I can afford to lose whatever I have now.

  9. Butch in Waukegan

    As if the Justice Dept. needed another reason not to prosecute corporate criminals.

    From Bloomberg: U.S. Barred From Prosecuting Off-Label Sales of Drugs

    The U.S. has “repeatedly prosecuted” drug companies and sales representatives for off-label promotion, the appellate court said, citing multiple cases including one that resulted in a $3 billion settlement by GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK) earlier this year.

    The 2-1 decision by the appeals court may restrict such prosecutions in the future, U.S. Circuit Judge Debra Ann Livingston said in her dissent. “The majority calls into question the very foundations of our century-old system of drug regulation,” she wrote.

    1. psychohistorian

      We don’t need no stinkin drug regulation… least on the ones we call legal.

      Those legal folks are too busy anyway trying to figure out how to shut down recent Washington and Colorado legalization moves.

      Oh boy! A captured President, Congress AND Judiciary. A perfect trifecta of control by the global inherited rich.

  10. LeonovaBalletRusse

    See Photo Caption, followed by essay at link below:

    “A soldier of the 4-19th Agribusiness Development Team makes his way home through the Indianapolis International Airport from a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan, Sunday, June 10, 2012. (Photo: Sgt. John Crosby / The National Guard / flickr)”
    by William Rivers Pitt – 5 December 2012

  11. LeonovaBalletRusse
    //Psychopaths often appear normal, even charming. Underneath, they lack conscience and empathy, making them manipulative, volatile and often (but by no means always) criminal. The psychologist Kevin Dutton in his book, The Wisdom of Psychopaths, notes society, and especially Wall Street, admires and rewards many of the qualities of psychopaths – fearlessness, emotional sterility, supreme confidence, ruthlessness, lack of remorse, refusal to take responsibility, narcissism and delusions of grandeur. Who could argue that those characteristics virtually defined the Wall Street crowd responsible for blowing up the world’s economy in 2008? In fact, a recent study showed psychopaths were four times more common among business leaders than among the general population. [1]/ [Babiak]

    /A 2005 British study compared the psychological profiles of 39 senior business executives at leading British companies with those of mental patients in the UK’s Broadmoor Special Hospital. The business leaders scored a clear “victory” in the three traits normally used to identify the emotional dysfunction of psychopaths: histrionic personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, and compulsive personality disorder.//
    These “Corporate” guys now asserting their might in “fiscal cliff” talks.

  12. Gmarks

    That photo of a cuddly looking coyote is GARBAGE!

    In February and March, when they run out of rabbits and mice, they jump the fences in our area and shred our pets – not to eat, but because they see them as competition for food.

    I have no use for coyotes, they should be shot on sight.

    If you could only see photos of what’s left of a jack terrier or collie – it’s just so sad.

    1. ambrit

      Dear Gmarks;
      I agree. After seeing what was left of one of my father-in-laws calves after coyotes had been at it, I too shoot them on sight. They are smart and fearless. They will take down humans if given the chance. Thank heaven they don’t have 22-250s.

    2. smokethebarbecue

      More than quarter of a million Americans per year go to hospital emergency rooms because of dog bites. Coyotes and wolves are usually smart enough to be risk-averse and only attack when hungry or threatened.

    3. kevinearick

      those cute little rascals in cuyamaca had me surrounded on a rock one time…stayed up there all night.

      that stretch between pullman and spokane wasn’t real comfortable this last time either…

  13. emptyfull

    Re: Lincoln movie.

    Thankfully, I was warned about the opening scene. If I hadn’t known, I might have walked out and missed some great performances…

  14. CLAJR

    Re Lincoln: I didn’t need to be primed to make the link to Obama, but I was glad the Jacobin piece articulated the connection–and expanded the entire context.

  15. rich

    Then we look into the role of Senator Feinstein’s husband Richard Blum, the head of the world’s largest commercial real estate company, who has an exclusive contract with the U.S. Postal Service to list and sell its valuable and historic public property as the Congress deliberately bankrupts the Post Office in the name free enterprise. U.C. Berkeley professor of Geography, Gray Brechin joins us to discuss the theft of our national heritage which the press is ignoring while only reporting that the Postal Service is in default, but not why, and who is profiting from its deliberate destruction.

    1. Aquifer

      Yo! This is amazing in it’s out and out brazenness – I hope Yves does a post or something on this …

      Every would be prog blogger should do something with this ….

      1. Aquifer

        This really ties it ALL together in one neat package ….corruption, greed, privitization, the 1%, all at the highest levels ….

    2. ginnie nyc

      This is incredible.

      Today I was riding in the cripple van to an appointment, and we passed the newly-inaugurated Hudson Yards project, a final Bloomberg-era real estate pyramid on the West Side of Manhattan. It will mow over at least 6 city blocks and replace them, in effect, with a private city.

      As we passed the HY site, I looked at the adjacent USPO Morgan Sorting Facility, a New Deal-era Graeco-Roman temple, and thought, too bad they can’t get their hands on that plot, ha ha. Then it struck me like lightning – that’s the whole point of driving under the USPO – so the rentier class can get it’s hands on the PO’s vast real estate holdings nationwide.

      And now your cited article proves my intuition. In spades.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        And don’t forget the Globalized S.E.C.!
        //Forget the perfectly anticipated Greek (selective) default. This is the real deal. The FT just released a blockbuster that Europe’s most important and significant bank, Deutsche Bank, hid $12 billion in losses during the financial crisis, helping the bank avoid a government bail-out, according to three former bank employees who filed complaints to US regulators. US regulators, whose chief of enforcement currently was none other than the General Counsel of Deutsche Bank at the time!/
        . . .
        /SEC enforcement attorneys eh? Because this is where it gets really fun: the person who was in charge of DB’s legal compliance at the time was none other than Robert Khuzami. The same Robert Khuzami who just happens to be the chief of enforcement at the SEC!/

        /Robert Khuzami, head of enforcement at the SEC, has recused himself from all Deutsche Bank investigations because he was Deutsche’s general counsel for the Americas from 2004 to 2009. Dick Walker, Deutsche’s general counsel, is a former head of enforcement at the SEC. The SEC declined to comment on the investigation.//

  16. kevinearick

    regardless of all the BS you ever read, it is the price of labor that clears the market. One of these days soon, it’s going to be Oh my God, we need an army of whatevers. build your price model/feedback signal with some care. let the queue of queues do the work for you.

    you know what’s going to happen after the new year…

  17. LeonovaBalletRusse

    SCATHING TRUTH from a Mensch in America:
    //Liberty consists of government being ruled by law and citizens having control over law. This was the way our founding fathers set up the US Constitution. It is the Constitution that defines the United States. Every member of the government and the armed forces swears allegiance to the Constitution–not to the government or to the president or to a political party or to an ideology–to defend the Constitution against enemies foreign and domestic./

    /Today the emphasis needs to be on the Constitution’s domestic enemies in “our own” government. America’s foreign enemies are miniscule. But the domestic enemies are legion. . . ./
    . . .
    /Bradley Manning, a member of the US military, complied with his oath of office, with the US Military Code, with the Nuremberg standards set by the US government, with the strictures expressed by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the George W, Bush administration, and with his own conscience./
    . . .
    /The window into America’s political soul reveals total evil. The US government constitutes Satan’s Chosen People. Nothing else can be said for those who rule and oppress us.//
    PIECE BEST READ IN ENTIRETY. Explore the website of Paul Craig Roberts

  18. LeonovaBalletRusse

    Yves, HOT:
    “Schauble: Go Slow on Banking Union”
    December 5th, 2012
    in econ_news, syndication
    //Econintersect: German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble has thrown a big bucket of cold water on the flickering flame of movement toward a Eurozone banking union. He suggested that a revision of EU treaties would be required to bring all of Europe’s banks under a single supervisor. If his view were to prevail it would provide more than a slowdown; it would be a dead stop.//
    MORE at linked site, Video included.

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