Links 2/10/13

Revealed: the secret that makes flying squid faster than Usain Bolt Independent

Mars Rover Curiosity Completes First Full Drill National Geographic

Lines of beauty: British Library’s medieval manuscripts go digital FT

Live Blog for Historic Nor’easter Hitting New England Weather Underground

HHS Delays Basic Health Plan Option Until 2015 Kaiser Health News (JW). ObamaCare shaping up to be a policy clusterfuck of epic proportions. Nobody could have predicted…

Obamacare: A Deception Paul Craig Roberts, Counterpunch. Interesting detail if true.

Obama ‘likes’ first draft of State of the Union The Hill

Groundhog Day Atrios. Exactly.

How do you explain drone killings? With post-Orwellian “Newspeak” Salon

Support grows for U.S. “drone court” to review lethal strikes Reuters. From The Department of How Stupid Do They Think We Are?

US Air Force veteran, finally allowed to fly into US, is now banned from flying back home Glenn Greenwald. Will Josef K please pick up the white courtesy phone? We have The Castle on the line.

False Memories of Fabricated Political Events SSRN (chx). PDF download of complete paper is free.

The New Reality Of ‘Economic Recovery’ For American Workers Testosterone Pit

UK Recovery The Center of The Universe

Amazon unpacked FT

U.S. Postal Service Victimized by GOP Privatization Scheme Bradblog

Protest’s last stand? FT

Occupy Directory. Impressive.

Northern lights Economist. Please, sir, may I have some more neoliberalism?

Interdealer Brokers Emerge as Key Enablers in Libor Scandal Bloomberg (FM)

Barclays closes controversial tax avoidance unit Guardian (RS)

Is this the year Wall Street completes its purchase of Florida’s Court System? Bankruptcy Law Journal (LE)

A breakthrough speech on monetary policy Reuters (MR) But see e.g.

Horse meat scandal: ‘More contaminated food likely to be found’ Telegraph. Sausage inna bun!

Horsemeat scandal blamed on international fraud by mafia gangs Guardian

Youngest American Woman Billionaire Found With In-N-Out Bloomberg. “Hidden billionaires.”

Indiana soybean farmer sees Monsanto lawsuit reach US supreme court Guardian

And Now Let Us Praise, and Consider the Absurd Luck of, Famous Men The Atlantic

Pancreatic Cancer Cure Econintersect (TED video). This is the kind of research you should do if you’re a teenager, bright, and don’t want the government to drive you to suicide.

From Cold War to the ‘Tor Chor Dor’ Bangkok Post. Desmond Ball interview.

Sexual Harassment of Women is State Sponsored Say Egyptian Women Real News Network

Conspiracy theorists harassing, impersonating Aurora theater shooting victims McClatchy

A Short Lesson in Perspective Linus Redding

Antidote du jour (Furzy Mouse):

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. Jessica

    A question about Obamacare. Does anyone know if American citizens residing overseas will also be required to purchase health insurance in the US? The expats I know all get their insurance outside the US, of course at much lower rates with much better coverage.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I’m sure there are many who would like to know that. It would be like ObamaCare to screw people out of the currency arbitrage of locating abroad for health care reasons.

      1. Ms G

        How ironic, isn’t it, that when Hayek came to the United States (invited by the Koch brothers to propagate the ideological underpinnings of monstrosities like ObamaUnCare) he only did so once it was confirmed that he could sign up for Medicare! The *only* reason he had hesitated to take up the Koch invite was the fear of pricey health insurance! And Hayek went on Medicare and proceeded to do, write and say s**t that has brought on the forces bent on the destruction of Medicare.

        F**k Hayek and all the tools in Economics Departments and Think Tanks and PR Shops who have brought us to this point.

    2. bob

      Good question. I had a friend who was eligable for US citizenship and advised him to look into this. I never heard the outcome.

      A slightly different question- is the US going to tax foreign health insurance as “income”? At what price, the US “value” or the foreign “cost”?

      What would similar, all inclusive health insurance cost in the US? Is that “income”? Would a northern European health care system fall into the “cadillac plan” category?

    3. JGordon

      Not sure about that, but I do know one thing though: as a disabled veteran with VA care I’m exempt from Obamacare. It’s something I’ll be highlighting on future resumes for sure: “no need to ever have Obamacare government insurance subsidies”. Hehe. Imagine that: someone who finds the current system to be utterly vile and looks forward to its impending collapse has a huge leg up for employment compared to those who work hard for the system and believe(d) in it.

        1. JGordon

          I don’t doubt it; but at least I’m arranging contingencies-something most passive sheep can’t even conceive of doing.

        2. JGordon

          I have been thinking about it just now, and I recalled this essay from Charles Hugh Smith from back in 2008:

          “When belief in the System Fades”:

          Rather than working hard and investing all your effort in a system that is failing, you ought to consider giving up and looking for alternatives. When you stop caring how corrupt the government is because it can no longer affect you, you’ll feel free and have peace of mind. That’s why I have to smile when I read about how awful Obamacare will be for people. It’ll make more and more come over to my side.

          1. Skippy

            I think you need to get the causation order sorted out… the BSD private sector is the well of fraud.

            The Government is an – institution – that is staffed with people, if the government is staffed with people on the take from the private sector, well…

            Skippy… libertarian individualistic sorts are akin to boys entering incarceration… they don’t know it yet… or are so self deluded… think they can fend off all the propositions… yet in the end… they always end up someones bitch.

        3. JGordon

          Frankly I’d point out now that you are the one who is delusional, but since you have said absoltely nothing of substance so far (that’s pretty common for you, isn’t it?) I can’t really comment on anything you have to say one way or another.

      1. JGordon

        I linked to the Obamacare article on my various social networking pages. I love Dr. Paul Craig Roberts and generally do that for most of his work though. That guy really knows what’s going on. Great link. You all should see some interviews with him (via youtube) with him On The Edge with Max Keiser and The Keiser Report. Awesome stuff.

  2. scott

    You heard it here first. The Dems will propose scrapping Obamacare befoer the 2014 election in exchange for single payer with a private option (like our schools today), and the middle class pays for both.

    Support for scrapping Obamacare will be the swing vote for the midterm election. Note to Dems: make the legislation fit on 10 pages and read it first..

      1. different clue

        If Vermont can forcibly and visibly achieve it, then it becomes a visible precedent. That means it could be legally achievable in other states if a Single Payerist Movement could Conquer and Occupy and Purge and Disinfect all its opponents from the state government of any state which a Single Payerist Movement could conquer.

        Canadian Single Payer began in one Province (Saskatchewan I believe) under the Social Credit Party (I am sure Canadians will correct my history), and the Social Credit Single Payerists had to conquer the rest of Canada one Province at a time, did they not?

        1. Ms G

          Interesting stuff re. visible precedents, and the start of Canadian single-payer in one province. Thanks for posting.

    1. different clue

      The Judas Horse Dog Shitobamacrats will do no such thing.
      The only party who would do such a thing is the Republican Party. And some wannabe third parties.

      The Judas Horse Dog Shitobamacrats work for the Czar. Czar Judas Horse Obama.

    1. frosty zoom

      i’ve heard they’re combining HHS with the CIA (hi guys!) to form the DEPARTMENT OF OBAMADRONECARE.

    2. Jagger

      I got a headache reading the “ObamaCare: A Deception” article. It was very comprehensive and depressing but left out one point. I read in another article that smokers can be charged somewhere around 5 times more, IIRC, than everyone else. I assume because they are only 20 percent of the population and typically the poorer 20 percent. I just don’t see how they are going to run this thing without impoverishing large numbers of people that are on the margins already.

      I think the solution is to go ahead and move under a bridge now. Stake out a good spot before the crowds arrive. Maybe donate the house to a non-profit or burn it down or something to prevent the asset recovery from confiscating it.

      The idea of my money going to the government to support wars of aggression was bad enough. And now to subsidize the insurance industry feels like a bridge to far.

      1. Susan the other

        I know. The only reason I looked at this article is because Paul Craig Roberts has put his name behind the source, but we don’t know who the source is. It is a little off-topic for PCR as well. I really couldn’t force myself to read it tho’. It was like some outrageous insurance policy with so many exceptions you go cross eyed. At some point they are gonna be too clever by half and begin to write up exceptions to the exceptions. God, I’d rather get sick and die than read any more of this shit. And one more note: at the end of the article PCR is credited and we are also told he has just published another book: Wirtschaft am Abgrund. Auf Deutsch? In English this is Economy in Collapse. So why is it cited in German? I’m wondering if the German’s have done the hard analysis of Obamacare here.

    3. Chris

      We are very lucky here in Oz with free hospital, albeit with queues for non urgent stuff, but I am also forced to buy an insurance product I don’t want and will never use to avoid a 1.5% levy on my tax. Still better than the fascist police state you people live in.

      What you guys are facing is frightening. The doctors, specialists and industry must have very black hearts. No wonder more people want to get out of the US than in it these days. Sheesh

      1. different clue

        I’m not sure it is the doctors, the specialists and the industry. I think the problem is very specifically the Insurance Bussiness and the Dog Shit Obamacrats who work for it.

      2. Carla

        This is what happens when a society monetizes every fucking aspect of life. Let it be a cautionary tale for other countries.

        Of course, not all the doctors in the U.S. have black hearts. But they have received the message that they’re entitled to a very high income in this society, and only a few of them have managed to resist that message. You will find that almost all of them belong to

        The insurance industry is, of course, a criminal enterprise and a major villain in the U.S. non-healthcare industry. But it is joined in the medical-industrial complex by Big Pharma, huge for-profit and “non-profit” (hah!) hospital systems, and of course the very lucrative medical equipment industry. Let me not even mention Nursing Homes…you really don’t want to know.

        These corporations are, in turn, owned by the major banks.

        We do not have a situation where the medical-industrial complex controls the government; in many respects it IS the government.

        Please consult to fight back.

        1. Carla

          Sorry, I failed to provide an actual link to Physicians for a National Health Program, and they are heroic people:

          BTW, anyone can join PNHP…you don’t have to be a doctor. I have been a member ever since the US non-healthcare system killed my husband.

        2. LucyLulu

          No, “almost all physicians” are NOT for a national health plan. Not even most. The vast majority are very much opposed to taking healthcare out of the private sector, assuming it will lead to a loss in the large compensation level differentials they now enjoy over colleagues who practice in other countries. (To be fair, the increasing debt today’s doctors are graduating with are eating away at those differentials.)

  3. frosty zoom

    i can’t see why people are so worried about the horse meat. after all, the “meat” that’s coming from factory farms is from animals that are a,b,c..x,y,z of icky things.

    i imagine the horse meat would be of better quality.

    1. squiregeek

      We use chemicals in our horses’ pastures that render them inedible. Before eating horse you would be wise to make sure it was never a ‘companion animal.’ Especially from an area where fire ants are present.

    2. PQS

      Don’t forget that racehorses are routinely pumped through with all kinds of steriods, antibiotics, and all kinds of other medications to make them perform with less pain.

  4. Brindle

    Re: “How Do You Explain Drone Killings?”

    Al Qaida leaders are defined as nearly half-human, half programmed robots whose waking life and perhaps while sleeping are constantly looking for ways to attack the U.S.A.
    This is the basic dehumanization that goes along with the rationales for genocide and other atrocities.

    —“First, the condition that an operational leader present an ‘imminent’ threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons and interests will take place in the immediate future.”

    Well, OK then! Al-Qaida leaders, by definition, are “continually planning to kill Americans,” and the group “would engage in such attacks regularly to the extent it were able to do so.”
    Since “the U.S. government may not be aware of all al-Qaida plots as they are developing and thus cannot be confident that none is about to occur,” the threat demands “a broader concept of imminence,” which apparently resolves to the notion that “the nation may have a limited window of opportunity within which to strike.”—

  5. Cletus

    Obama is a Republican in Liberal clothing.

    The dems had better wise up.

    No competent executive would ever have signed this into law.

    Single payer is OBVIOUSLY the only way to go if healthcare costs and better outcomes are the goal.

    The ACA is the only way to go if you want to enrich corporations.

    1. frosty zoom

      it’s the reagan way!

      st. ronnie smiles on barry, his love child.

      “the dems better wise up”

      hahahahahahahaha! that’s funny.

      1. Brindle

        If a Dem hasn’t “wised up” by now it is because they choose to be willfully ignorant.
        For many of the liberal persuasion their information is derived mainly by reading the NYT, throw in a little “The Nation” and daily viewing PBS News Hour. Relying on those sources helps maintain the cocoon of unreality.

  6. Ned Ludd

    Regarding protests: a march through the streets is just a parade. In order to be effective, marches have to be part of a broader set of tactics that disrupt the status quo and make it impossible to continue business-as-usual.

    We decided to schedule our direct-action program for the Easter season, realizing that except for Christmas, this is the main shopping period of the year. Knowing that a strong economic-withdrawal program would be the by-product of direct action, we felt that this would be the best time to bring pressure to bear on the merchants for the needed change. […]

    The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation.

    Movements only work if people are willing to risk jail time and personal injury at the hands of the state. After all, Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his “Letter From Birmingham Jailfrom jail.

    You warmly commended the Birmingham police force for keeping “order” and “preventing violence.” I doubt that you would have so warmly commended the police force if you had seen its dogs sinking their teeth into unarmed, nonviolent Negroes. I doubt that you would so quickly commend the policemen if you were to observe their ugly and inhumane treatment of Negroes here in the city jail; if you were to watch them push and curse old Negro women and young Negro girls; if you were to see them slap and kick old Negro men and young boys; if you were to observe them, as they did on two occasions, refuse to give us food because we wanted to sing our grace together.

    In order to persist against the sustained violence of the state, you need organization, sympathetic press, leverage, ability to adapt, a coherent political philosophy, people educated about effective organizing tactics, and the resilience to survive attempts to sabotage the movement from within and crush the movement with state violence. The public, in the U.S., is authoritarian and hostile to social disruption. The press will quickly purge itself of any reporters sympathetic to protesters, as opera host Lisa Simeone found out. It is a dangerous and difficult time to be an effective protester.

    1. aletheia33

      cornel west repeated it at OWS in fall of 2011. he said we (meaning himself and the occupiers) have got to be “coffin ready” (a phrase from MLK).

      1. different clue

        The States (and State) that the SCLC and Dr. MLK challenged were in retreat on the racial justice issue, and could be forced into further retreat. SCLC/MLK were in a position of being able to conduct a long-term offensive without fear of mass extermination.

        The BizNazi GoverState Complex of today feels it has nowhere left to retreat to. It will have as many thousands of ready coffins as the “movement” has thousands of “coffin-ready” people. Since I am a physical coward, I will not be among those “coffin-ready” people. I will confine my activity to “leaderless mass economic resistance” of the kind which will have zero effect if I am the only one doing it, but will have massive effects if massive numbers of people do it.

        It has the psychological disadvantage of being unromantic
        and the stuff of no legends and no songs. What is so romantic and “daring” and “dangerous” about paying all your bills by mail so the USPS gets more survival money? But if millions of present-day electronic pre-payers went back to billpay-by-mail, they would be eFFECtively resisting, delaying, and denying the Privatization Conspiracy against the USPS. Now . . . how many of the brave young OWS protesters of today and tomorrow who are willing to risk their teeth, bones, hearing, and eyesight in megaviolent police anti-protest actions are willing to undertake the inconvenience in the meantime of cancelling their automatic payment systems and going back to billpay by USPS landmail?
        Not ten? Not five? Not even one? What’s the matter . . . not “romantic” enough? Not whiff-of-danger frisson-filled adrenalin-rushy enough?

        1. Carla

          @different clue: we need both, we need all, we need everyone.

          Right here in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, a 92-year old gentleman called me up and said “I knew your parents for many years, and I want to join your group.”

          What group? The Move to Amend the Constitution to say EXPLICITLY: Corporations Are Not People, and Money Is Not Speech.

          He’s coming to our next meeting, on Tuesday.

  7. Yellowrose

    Regarding the sexual harassment of women in Egypt – remember more than 4,000 women each year are raped and murdered in the U.S. too. Women are no safer in the U.S. Violence (physical/emotional/economic/social) against women and children by men is a worldwide sickness – patriarchy – with its transfer of unearned wealth and power from women and children to men, by men.

  8. Jennifer

    The problems of the post office are COMPLETELY Congress’s fault, even if they just did not have to prepay the pensions they’d be just about in the black. It’s really shameful that there can’t be a coalition of Democrats and, say, rural Republicans, to do the right thing.

    1. different clue

      What’s even more shameful is that not one single solitary Democrat will suggest it and then invite Rural Republicans to join in.

      (Here is the Democrats’ big chance to prove me wrong by suggesting it and inviting the Rural Republicans to join in).

      1. Kim Kaufman

        Henry Waxman was on board for the original legislation of this and last year I heard Waxman at a Town Hall here in L.A. say the post office is broke and post offices must be closed. To add even more idiocy to this, unions, at least in L.A., have been pushing vote by mail.

  9. ScottW

    It has be often stated, but the only folks who like their health insurance are people who get it through work and never have to use it. I went to an ER lately and was told by my BCBS insurer that certain physician charges were not covered because they were classified as observational, not emergency room services. A totally conjured up term to extract more money from patients and avoid insurance coverage. Apparently it was created to avoid medicare resrictions on ER payments. You know a healthcare system is broken when you can receive an advanced degree in medical billing and coding.

    1. craazyman

      Holy Smokes that’s amazing. If the doctor was only “observing” then there shouldn’t be any bill in the first place.

      I’m terrified of doctors, hospitals and especially emergency rooms. I don’t think I could bring myself to go to one. I’d rather just take about 2 mg of xanax and half a bottle of wine so I can pass out and hope somehow whatever it is goes away by the time I wake up.

      If not, I’ll just ascend from a narcotized delerium in the comfort of my own home. Now I have a $99 electric fireplace with a fake flame that looks real from 5 feet away. I don’t know who thought of it, but it’s brilliant, and relaxing.

      I wonder how long it’ll be before this virtual warfare opens up into live ammunition, with Americans shooting each other in the streets like they do in Syria. I guess this is why people want their guns, just in case they can’t take it any more.

    2. different clue

      Hmmm . . . I was bitten by a dog once and my workplace insurance payed all admittedly modest ER costs. (There was a copay on the antibiotic though).

      Of course I work at a mighty MidWest Academic University Hospital. Those places are some of the last vestiges of feudalism now existing. Insurance from one of the purely dog eat cat eat mouse eat cheese capitalist corporations or other bussinesses might not be so good.

    3. Carla

      Tacking on to the reference above to “observational fees” in the E.R., the Cleveland Clinic Foundation ( a NON-profit organization if you pleeze) charges a “facility fee” if you go to, uhm, their facility. I am not making this up.

  10. briansays

    a public option was i believe included in the bill that passed the house or pelosi had the votes

    it was gutted because a handful of democratic senator sold us out–blanche lincoln, ben nelson, joe lieberman and max baucus–they would not fight for it and obama true to form will take anything he thinks he can spin and sell to the base as a so called improvement—hey it worked he got reelected and will be gone when the proverbial sh#t hits the fan

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Please do not confuse the “public option” with single payer. See here and here. The “public option” was ginned up by career “progressives” running interference for Obama to suck all the oxygen out of single payer advocacy. Which it did, very successfully.

      The “public option” is and was a zombie sparkle pony and somebody should dismember and bury it, or whatever one does with zomebies. However, I have no doubt that the same career “progressives” will deploy it all over again, whenever single payer looms again (which it will, since not only can it be shown to work, it’s really a centrist solution, by world standards).

    2. different clue

      Various House Members had a few opportunities to defeat the whole bill ( and destroy Obama’s Presidency as the cherry on top) but they were afraid or unwilling to do so.

      Kucinich in particular was afraid to do so. Was he threatened or extorted? Did Obama describe in detail some of the reach-out-and-touch-someone capabilities that drones offer . . . on that famous plane ride? Did he suffer from “McGovern’s Disease”? (Hunter S. Thompson wrote somewhere in Fear And Loathing On The Campaign Trail 1972 that McGovern’s weakness is that “when the big whistle blows, he is still a Good Party Man”.)

        1. different clue

          I have so little computer time ( not owning my own computer and all) that I can’t find any such links. But I can suggest where to start. I believe that several CongressWomen declared themselves to be offended by the Stupak Ammendment. They could have voted down the whole bill over that. But they did not.

          There was an Al Giordano blogpost about how Obama the Masterful Community Organizer was able to maneuver and back Kucinich into a no-way-out corner such that Kucinich was left with no choice but to vote to pass the bill in the House on its final vote before going over to the Senate. He could have voted “no” if he had understood that the Obama Presidency needed and deserved to be destroyed right there at that moment. But Kucinich is/was a Good Democrat who has “McGovern’s Disease” just like so many Good Democrats do. Find the date of that vote, and the date of Kucinich’s arrival in Cleveland after the “fateful plane ride on Air Force One” and you will be able to find the relevant Al Giordan article. (Al Giordano articles can be found under the name Al Giordano or NarcoNews or Al Giordano The Field).

  11. Klassy!

    re: Paul Craig Roberts– was the “interesting detail” referred to the part about “estate recovery”?
    Does anyone know the truth of this claim?

    1. PQS

      I don’t know about all the particulars he referenced, but having had elderly relatives go through decline and death, I do know that if you get Medicaid, the state/feds will make you spend ALL your money prior to giving you any access to Medicaid services.

      And they will go back through five years of your records, just to make sure you haven’t given some of your money to your kids and then gone to the state for “free” care. It is Orwellian how it works, and, like every other “welfare” program in American, is punitively designed to only serve (in the most basic of meanings) the very, very poor.

      Anyone with assets and a relatively simple elderly condition (i.e., not Alzheimer’s or dementia) would probably be better off staying with family so they would have some money to pass onto their heirs.

      1. Carla

        “like every other “welfare” program in American, is punitively designed to only serve (in the most basic of meanings) the very, very poor.”

        Excusez-moi! Every effective welfare program in this country serves the very, very wealthy: BANKS, INSURANCE COMPANIES, BIG PHARMA, MILITARY CONTRACTORS, AGRICULTURAL CONGLOMERATES (think Ethanol), BIG COAL, BIG OIL…ETC.

        But the international banking cartel owns major stakes in all of these.

        Yes, it may be a shame that middle-class people can’t get Medicaid when they are aged and ill, so their adult children are denied any inheritance, but PQS, you’d better figure out who is really denying them, and who is benefitting.

        It’s easy to scapegoat poor people, and it’s JUST WHAT THE POWERS THAT BE WANT YOU TO DO. Look a little deeper, please.

    2. Ms G

      I haven’t read any of the 174,989 pages. But it seems that if this “estate clawback” mechanism is an invention, the PR machine in D.C. would have gone into over-drive by now to call it out as such. Or is this too paranoid and foily?

      1. LucyLulu

        There are currently, pre-Obamacare, clawback provisions to Medicaid. Medicaid eligibility is managed by the states and some states allow people to keep more assets than others. For example, in my state, your home and vehicle are exempt from being counted as assets used for Medicaid ineligibility. Other assets must total less than $2000. However, once you die, certain Medicaid expenses incurred will be taken out of your estate, which includes your home (and there is some sort of provision forbidding transfer of title to keep people from giving the house to the kids to escape the clawbacks).

  12. ohmyheck

    Re–oversight court for Drone Kill List–
    Senator Angus King, a Maine independent, said during the hearing that he envisioned a scenario in which executive branch officials would go before a drone court…and at least that would be … some check on the activities of the executive…King suggested that only drone attacks on U.S. citizens would need court approval; other proposals leave open the possibility that such a court could also rule regarding drone strikes on non-Americans.”

    Yup, It’s just jim-dandy to murder non-Americans, though, cuz they aren’t real human beings or anything.

    But, but, but…
    “Geoffrey Robertson, one of Britain’s most prominent human rights lawyers, described the current U.S. drone-strike policy as “execution without trial” and “international killing (which) … violates the right to life.”

    Robertson said that in his interpretation of international law, any court set up to review candidates for possible drone attacks would have to publish target lists, so that those listed would have an opportunity either to give themselves up or be able to have friends or relatives petition for their removal from the lists.”This should be an open process,” Robertson said.”

    Um, no, The Kill List is illegal, internationally, period.end.of.story. This just validates allowing for the very existence of List and the actions of the US Government. You don’t argue about who is ON the List, you argue that is morally, ethically and legally against the law. What kind of human-rights-activist-speak is this?

    1. Brindle

      As Cokie would say, The List is “out there” so no need to debate the validity or legality of having any list. I’m sure most Dem legislators support The List.

    2. AbyNormal

      “What happens now is that not many people go to funerals because funerals have been struck by drones. Many people are scared… People go to help, and then a drone strikes them.” — Firoz Ali Khan (anonymized name)

      “[The drones] make such a noise that everyone is scared. Everybody is mentally disturbed. They are scared.” — Firoz Ali Khan (anonymized name)

      “They’re there twenty-four hours. Three or four drones in the sky, twenty-four hours, they don’t even stop for a minute.” — Dawood Ishaq (anonymized name

      “The children are crying and they don’t go to school. They fear that their schools will be targeted by the drones.” — Ismail Hussain (anonymized name)

  13. Eureka Springs

    The fact government allows its funds to enforce various caste (gold, silver, bronze, sub-bronze, etc.) standards at all, says so much.

      1. Ms G

        Well, it’s important to keep the klepto-systems consistent. We want to make sure that only people with gold credit cards get gold policies, silver/silver, bronze (nothing)/bronze, etc.

        Otherwise these giga databases where they’re consolidating all information about every one of us will have to have new fields and additional query-capability to filter additional categories … this way, the credit card and the insurance policy profiles will be connected and thus simpler to deal with … from the database’s point of view.


  14. davidgmills

    Obamacare is just like being given another private school to choose from when every experience you have had with private schools has been a bad one.

    Those who wanted a public option are not surprised by the devilish details of Obamacare — we pretty much expected such.

      1. different clue

        Well . . . if someone runs on/ tries to get passed a fixed shape shift-proof straight-up medicare buy-in access to all who want it at current medicare rates; I will still go for it/ support it.
        If Big Insura opposed it for real and not just for show, I would tend to think that Big Insura was afraid of it, and that would make me suspect it might really be what it would really claim to be . . . straight up medicaire buy-in for all who want it.

  15. PQS

    Re: “New Reality” from Test Pit:

    I’ve been putting that meme out there for a while….that this is the “New Normal” – people who are vastly overworked, doing the jobs of more than one person, stressed out, and with no end in sight.

    I keep hoping that everyone will wake up!

  16. different clue

    Now, about farmer Bowman versus Monsanto . . . if he wins his suit, then that just opens the door to yet more use of Roundup Ready soybeans on yet more acres. And Roundup Ready soybeans are a standing permission to use Roundup on all that land. And that poses problems of its own. Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology at Purdue University Don Huber has begun outlining some of those problems.

    This lawsuit addresses a totally different issue that farmer Percy Schmeiser’s lawsuit addressed. Schmeiser was suing about Monsanto contaminating Schmeiser’s own fty-years-in-the-breeding line of canola seed with Monsanto’s dirty filthy GMO xeno-frankengenes. And then seeking to extort payment from Schmeiser on the basis of the presence of those genes even though for Schmeiser those Monsanto genes were a Bug, NOT a Feature. Whereas Farmer Bowman is deliberately using the Monsanto genes AS a feature so he can keep using Roundup on his land despite what is being learned more and more about Roundup.

    So if Bowman wins, we will suffer yet more xeno-frankenGMO contamination and aggression throughOUT the agricultural system, with its attendant steady rise in the rate of Roundup use, abuse, and perma-contamination of soils and food. So I sincerely hope in the strongest possible terms that Farmer Bowman loses this suit.

  17. dearieme

    It’s rather odd that a headline refers to “cancer cure” but the article is about a detection test.

  18. jo6pac

    0bummer care I thought I would just take the buy out then read the buy out is per month not per yr but still cheaper than the bronze prize package. Then again since don’t own a home and have very little items I do own well lets just say I’ll pass on the whole bad plan and when the irs gets the house I rent they can take the furiture few other items making it easier on my brother to clean.

    Plenty of cash for war and dod vendors but nothing for Main Street.

    I was wondering if anyone is watching this how they think it will play out here in Amerika.

    1. Hypothetical_Taxpayer

      Well, every country in the world is gonna print up enough money to either buy or take over the world. What could go wrong with that?

  19. Chauncey Gardiner

    The “Occupy Directory” is indeed impressive and causes me to to consider whether it provides a framework for a broadly based, “big tent” global political party movement to address issues caused by the global banking-corporate cartel?

    In a related vein, as a result of clear existing monetary policy failure, it appears to me that MMT may be gaining traction among policy makers in government. What is the probable fate of currently ongoing huge transfers of Fed-BoE-ECB QE Cash to the “Primary Dealers” if such a proposal becomes policy?:

    (Of interest to me was the near-hysterical reaction to Adair Turner’s policy proposal by a couple of the respondents in the comments section of that article.)

  20. Ms G

    Paul Craig Roberts.

    It is a terrifying hallucination to read through the “clarifications” about some of the poisons buried in the FrankenCare law. And what do you want to bet that at least some of these “kinks” that are being “ironed out” in the regulations are just (in truth) add ons that the Insurance Industry Dracula Machine had been promised.

    If there’s this many vials of arsenic (for us people) in that law at *this* early stage of people actually starting to read it (Pelosi: “Can’t know what’s in there until we pass it”) I can only imagine how many more are going to surface (or not) in the coming months.

    The only escape from the steel manacles and castor oil I can see based on the piece published by PCR is to stay the h**l away from these “exchanges.”

    Also, as somebody mentioned, it seems quite insidious that the way all of these hideous mechanisms cut is that they affect not just the very poor (though Medicaid has long been a type of poisoned shower stall), but anyone who does not have employer-based health policies — ergo, anyone who is now in the “free lance” economy. So inherent in the design is the exploitation of the divided and conquered, which of course allows the spineless people in Congress to claim cover for not demanding Single Payer. They can always say — oh, but Obama Care is so great for the [X%] who aren’t affected by it.

    I am distributing the PCG article to as many people as I can. Short of sending in armed Ninjas to the WSJ and NYT editorial rooms to force them to publish it on their front pages, I don’t know how else we get the word to the 99%.

  21. Ms G

    Has anyone heard from Elizabeth Warren since concrete details about ACA have started coming out into public view, starting 2 weeks ago?

    I am just curious, because she wrote the book (not too long ago) about how a huge percentage (75%?) of Americans who had to declare personal bankruptcy had to do so because of medical costs that wiped them out. And how a huge percentage of that 75% were people *with “health” insurance.”

    As it is increasingly apparent that the ACA (whether by design or not) is about to increase medical bankruptcies casused by “health” insurance policies by stratospheric orders of magnitude (close to or equal the number of Americans who will buy insurance policies on the “exchanges”) I just figured Warren might be chiming in about now.

    But I haven’t heard a thing and I’m assuming it *must* be because I just haven’t been following the right news outlets.

    One thing seems clear about the policies that will be on offer at ACA “exchanges” — anybody who buys them will be “self-executing.”

      1. Ms G

        Skippy, the youtube you linked to (seems it’s an excerpt from Brazil) is blocked because owned by … rentier Movie Production Companies. How very apt!

        1. Skippy

          Yes the end scene… the chair… his old chum as inquisitor… lambasting him for a lack of discreteness and yes…. the soft word from the guard… confess… your bank account can’t take much more… never mind the metal probing your flesh…

          The film was produced by Arnon Milchan’s company Embassy International Pictures (not to be confused with Joseph E. Levine’s Embassy Pictures). Gilliam’s original cut of the film is 142 minutes long and ends on a dark note. This version was released internationally outside the US by 20th Century Fox.

          US distribution was handled by Universal. Universal executives thought the ending tested poorly, and Universal chairman Sid Sheinberg insisted on dramatically re-editing the film to give it a happy ending, a decision that Gilliam resisted vigorously.[23]

          As with the cult science fiction film Blade Runner (1982), which had been released three years earlier, a version of Brazil was created by the movie studio with a more consumer-friendly ending. After a lengthy delay with no sign of the film being released, Gilliam took out a full-page ad in the trade magazine Variety urging Sheinberg to release Brazil in its intended version.

          Eventually, after Gilliam conducted private screenings (without the studio’s approval), Brazil was awarded the Los Angeles Film Critics Association award for “Best Picture”, which prompted Universal to finally agree to release a modified 132-minute version supervised by Gilliam, in 1985.[3][24] – snip

          Chicago Sun Times film critic Roger Ebert gave the film 2 out of 4 stars, claiming the film was “hard to follow”, but displayed an affinity to being “reminded of a Chaplin film, Modern Times, and reminded, too, that in Chaplin economy and simplicity were virtues, not the enemy.”[28] – Stick sharps in eyes snip

          Skippy… best for last thingy… The film was nominated for two Academy Awards; for Original Screenplay and Best Art Direction (Norman Garwood, Maggie Gray)[34] According to Gilliam in an interview with Clive James in his online programme Talking in the Library, to his surprise Brazil is apparently a – favorite film – of the ***far Right in America***. – my emphases

  22. JTFaraday

    re: Obamacare: A Deception Paul Craig Roberts, Counterpunch. Interesting detail if true.

    “Obamacare…was cloaked in ideological slogans such as “shared responsibility,” “no free riders” and “ownership society.”

    Nevertheless, despite indiscreetly exposing its true nature in this manner, at the end of the day this essentially punitive policy was sold on the liberal side of the political ledger under the rubric of “universal health care.”

    I do take great comfort, however, in knowing that the next time a conservative policy agenda gets fluffed with some similar liberal rhetoric and reappears “on the left,” absolutely no one is going to fall for it.

    1. Ms G

      ” … absolutely no one is going to fall for it.”

      Let’s hope. And here’s to your being right about this. Because if it does, then we will be witnessing some kind of Great Awakening. Not a moment too soon.

  23. Chris

    Story on muslim man not allowed to fly home to Qatar.

    US Authorities treatment of muslim faith, bit like how the jews were treated by the Nazis 70 years ago. What next camps and confiscation of their assets?

    Diff now between Nazis though is you join the master race not through your genes, but through your wallet.

  24. ambrit

    Just got back home from work, the DIY Boxxstore. Had to take the back roads. Trees down everywhere. We heard the tornado go past, about a half mile or so to the South of the Boxxstore. Unconfirmed reports from a relative of one of the cashiers that there are fatalities in a trailer park mainly inhabited by working class, Latinos and Anglos. Trailer park in Lamar County South of the Boxxstore. The sirens went off four times during the afternoon. The tornado was a long track type. It pretty much stayed on the ground for seven counties, or about nearly an hour. Campus of USM is trashed. City of Petal, to the Northeast of Hattiesburg, is missing chunks of its’ downtown. Flash flooding all over the place. Rain was intense and long lasting. Thunderstorms entrained in a line from Southwest to Northeast passing over Hattiesburg and Petal. At one point, about 4:30 PM, a group of Boxxstore workers went out into the parking lot and watched the clouds visibly circle around the immediate vicinity. Air was very still, and quiet. The locals remark that tornados in early February are a sign that global warming is the ‘real deal.’
    Good luck with your blizzard folks.
    Mother Nature’s trying to tell us something.

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